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Former University of Oregon President Dave Frohnmayer has passed away at 74



Dave Frohnmayer, former University of Oregon president died on Monday night, family spokesperson and friend Marla Rae confirmed with the Emerald.

The family released this statement, provided to the Emerald by UO spokesperson Julie Brown:

“Dave Frohnmayer passed away quietly in his sleep last night. He was 74. Dave had bravely dealt with his quiet battle against prostate cancer for 5 1/2 years. We are devastated by his passing but we are grateful that his passing was peaceful.

Much of Dave’s life was devoted to fighting devastating health crises that enveloped his family. These battles were complicated by the intense public attention that inevitably accompanied his lifelong commitment to public service. He was adamant that his own health issues would remain private. Except for the immediate family and Dave’s closest friends, he was able to accomplish this and continue a full public schedule to the end.

The family will hold a celebration of Dave’s remarkable life at a time to be announced.

Dave is survived by his wife Lynn, his sons Mark and Jonathan, his daughter Amy, his sister Mira and brother John. His daughters Kirsten and Katie and his brother Phil predeceased him. Frohnmayer was president of the UO from 1994 to 2009 and continued teaching at the university after retiring from presidency.”

He was attorney general for the state of Oregon from 1981 to 1991 and during his tenure he won six of seven cases before the Supreme Court. Frohnmayer was the Republican candidate for governor in 1990, losing to Democrat Barbara Roberts.

Frohnmayer also served the UO as the dean of students for the School of Law, law professor and legal counsel to the university.

Along with his wife Lynn, Frohnmayer founded the Fanconi Anemia Research Fund, Inc. Fanconi anemia is a rare blood disorder that two of his daughters passed from and his 28-year-old daughter currently lives with.

In 2009, when the university was facing a particularly difficult fiscal situation, Frohnmayer offered to take six unpaid days off to help the deficit.

Scott Coltrane, interim president of UO e-mailed the student body expressing his sadness for Frohnmayer’s passing.

“Dave was a friend, a former colleague and a valued advisor. I am honored to have witnessed how his profound collaboration and insightful vision built the University of Oregon into the top research university it is today.”

Former ASUO President Sam Dotters-Katz also commented on Frohnmayer’s passing.

“It is truly remarkable that, even though he was the most successful state attorney general in modern history and the greatest president the University of Oregon has ever known, all of that pales in comparison to the man he was to his family. His loss is an incalculable tragedy, and I will miss him dearly,” he said.

Frohnmayer was a member of Delta Upsilon at Harvard University. During his presidency he created the fraternity and sorority endorsement program and provided scholarships to three men and three women.

The stipend was between $250 to $1,000, and was disbursed during fall and winter terms.


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Alexandria Cremer

Alexandria Cremer