Sad News for the Ithaca College Community: Frank Musgrave Has Passed Away


Contributed by William Kolberg

 It is with great sadness that we inform the campus community of the death of our colleague and friend, Frank Musgrave.  Frank passed away unexpectedly, Wednesday, January 2, after a brief illness. 


Frank joined the Economics Department in 1968. He retired in 2010 after 42 years of service to the college. 

Frank’s commitment to excellence in teaching was unwavering.  He saw humor as a critical means of engaging students.  He always found a way to mix his dry humor in with technically challenging economic theory and application. As a result, his students responded with genuine affection when recalling their time in Frank’s classes.

Outside the classroom, all of us who had the pleasure of knowing him will remember Frank’s stories and anecdotes, often employed to ease in to a difficult issue while making a point. One of Frank's enduring legacies is his interest in a free and unabashed debate where opinions may diverge. In a large diverse organization like Ithaca College, Frank showed by example, that we should continue to develop our ability to argue respectfully. 

Frank helped create Students in Free Enterprise at Ithaca College as a local chapter of the national organization. Each year this club put together presentations for local, regional and national competitions.  Over the years the club consistently brought home trophies and awards from competitions.

Frank served on the boards of a variety of organizations. These include the New York State Economics Association, New York State Council on Economic Education, the Southern Tier (NY) Center for Economic Education, and Cayuga Medical Center. He also served as director or president of each of these organizations. 

The long-time chair of the Department of Economics, Frank expressed faith in the abilities and devotion of his colleagues to their craft, and encouraged members to innovate along lines that worked best for their particular style in class. His influence had a profound effect on the character of the Economics Department, a legacy that we are building on today.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, January 5, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. at the Estey, Munroe & Fahey Funeral Home, 137 Main St., Candor, NY. The family will receive friends Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made in Frank Musgrave's memory to the Candor Emergency Squad, P.O. Box 141, Candor, NY 13743. Condolences may be made to Frank's family at