University News

Former WIU Professor, State Prison Board Member, Passes Away

March 3, 2010

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MACOMB, IL - - David A. Frier Jr., 78, a former political science professor at Western Illinois University and a member of the Illinois Prisoner Review Board, passed away Feb. 27 in Springfield (IL).

A service is scheduled for 2 p.m. today (March 3) at Hobbs-Johnson Funeral Home in Benton, Frier's hometown. Interment will be in Masonic and Odd Fellows Cemetery, Benton. Visit to sign the memorial guestbook.

In 1971, Frier was among 18 WIU faculty members who were named Outstanding Educators of America, based on civic and professional achievements. Several of his students – including Mary Matalin and Illinois Sen. Kirk Dillard, a Republican candidate for Governor of Illinois – went on to political careers. He also authored the book, "Conflict of Interest in the Eisenhower Administration" (Iowa State University Press, 1969).

Frier joined the WIU faculty in September 1966, following 10 years as a lecturer in the government department at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, where he earned his bachelor's (1954) and master's (1957) degrees and his Ph.D. (1966). He retired from Western in 1986. An avid antique collector and dealer, Frier set up an antique shop in Macomb. He was known for painting Illinois River duck decoys, and he would exhibit at shows throughout the Midwest.

In 2002, then Gov. George Ryan appointed Frier to the Illinois Prison Review Board. He was later reappointed by then Gov. Rod Blagojevich, and was a member of the board at the time of his death.

Frier is survived by his wife, Yasna, five sons and one daughter.

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