1.Ben French was one of my best teachers,
2. His article on " The Lemon cycle" motivated me to do further research while working on my MSc. and Ph.D.
3. Here's an anecdote: In 1965, on one of my first days in Davis, my wife and I had met Ben French for the first time while walking in an olive orchard and I asked him the following question:
' Why don't people harvest the olives instead of letting them rot on the ground?'
His reply was roughly as follows:
"In your country (Turkey) labor is cheap or maybe even free. Hence the benefit is much higher than the cost of picking olives. This is not the case here in California."
That was my first lesson in economics from Ben French.
As his students, we all admired and respected him.
Dr. Nazmi Demir, Ph.D., 1970
I was a student when Dr. French was chairman. He always treated us with respect and he commanded the same. He will be missed.
I have many fond memories of Ben. When I enrolled in the Ag Econ department graduate program in the fall of 1970, it was my intention to only pursue an MS degree. however, near the end of my first year, Ben suggested I consider a Ph.D. I followed his advice and have never regretted that decision. He was an excellent teacher and mentor. Although he was not on my committee, he was a source of advice and wisdom during my years at Davis. He was also a hunting companion; we hunted waterfowl together both during graduate school and after I left UCD. I value those
memories of the time we spent in the field.
Ben was a giant in the profession and one of the faculty who made the Ag Econ department into the nationally prominent program it is today.
Den French was my first contact with UC Davis. We met at the AAEA meetings in 1970. I then visited four other universities but enrolled in the Ph.D. program at Davis based primarily on that contact with Ben. At Davis he served on my committee and provided invaluable and MANY comments on my dissertation research. Ben was one of the greatest ag economists I ever met!!! He has had great impact on the profession as well as the department at Davis.
I was a graduate student during the 1980s and took Ben French's marketing class. He was always the consummate professional and expected the most from his students. He made us all better.