TUSCALOOSA | Eric Nicholas Baklanoff, age 88, of Tuscaloosa, died June 24, 2014 at home surrounded by family, followed by a brave struggle with cancer. Funeral liturgy will be conducted Saturday at 1 p.m. under the auspices of Tuscaloosa Memorial Chapel Funeral Home at Tuscaloosa Memorial Park with Reverend Fr. Paul Costopoulos, Dean, Holy Trinity-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral officiating.
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Dr. Baklanoff was preceded in death by his parents, Elizabeth F. Baklanoff and Nicholas W. Baklanoff (stepmother, Lucile) and his brother, Dr. John Grayson.
He is survived by wife, Dr. Joy Driskell Baklanoff; son Nicholas "Nick" Baklanoff of Burlington, California; daughters, Tanya A. Baklanoff (Mitch Kief) of Seattle, Washington and Ana-Maria Baklanoff; brother, Vladimir "Dimir" Baklanoff of Las Vegas, Nevada; and sister-in-law, Jan D. Lanier (James "Franke") of Brewton, Alabama.
Dr. Eric N, Baklanoff was born in Graz, Austria in 1925 and spent his boyhood in Montreux, Switzerland and Mexico City before immigrating to Ohio with his father. While in Yellow Springs, he lived and worked on Whitehall Farm and graduated from Bryan High School in 1943.
He attended Antioch College his freshman year, leaving to serve in the U.S. Navy during WWll where he spent his service in the SW Pacific and Philippines. After the war he attended The Ohio State University (OSU) on the GI Bill where he received his bachelor's and master's degrees. From 1950 to 1954 he was associated with the International Division of Chase National Bank, which included three years in Puerto Rican branches. In 1954 he returned to OSU to pursue doctoral studies; lived in Chile as that country's first Fulbright Scholar in 1957 and received his doctorate in economics in 1958. While in Chile, he learned to ski and barbeque goat, a local culinary specialty.
Dr. Baklanoff was Board of Visitors Research Professor Emeritus of Economics at UA where he was dean for International Program from 1969-1974. Before joining the faculty at UA, he directed LSU's Latin American Studies Institute and Vanderbilt University's Graduate Center for Latin American Studies. He has published 12 books. He was a Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences at Palo Alto, California and has been the recipient of eight other post-doctoral awards. He is also listed in "Who's Who in America" and "Who's Who in the World." He was one of 16 faculty members named outstanding scholars by the University of Alabama in 1980-81.
Since retiring in 1992, Dr. Baklanoff continued to teach economics part-time at UA, served as a consultant to the Library of Congress in both the Federal Research and Hispanic Divisions, was a founding member of the Emeritus Committee for International Strategic Studies, has been involved in promoting symposia both on the UA campus and in Spain and Chile with Alabama's sister universities. Dr. Baklanoff stated that his greatest academic pleasure was serving as faculty mentor for a young woman under the McNair Scholars Program. While retired, he advised UA's Orthodox Campus Fellowship (OCF) for three years.
He has been a member of the Tuscaloosa Exchange Club since December 1985 and served as a member of the Board of Directors between 1994-1995. He was a member of the LaMaistre Society.
Eric was proud to serve his country during WWII and later through teaching students who went to serve the nation in strategic positions to Washington, D.C., as well as abroad as ambassadors and other key embassy positions. Dr. Baklanoff devotedly and humbly served his church, Holy Trinity - Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Birmingham, Alabama. Eric was a most caring, devoted, and loving husband, and father of one son and two daughters.
In lieu of flowers, family members request memorial contributions be made to The University of Alabama, Box 870123, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487, to be added to The Dr. Eric N. Baklanoff Endowed Support Fund, or the International Orthodox Christian Charities at iocc.org.
Published in Tuscaloosa News on June 27, 2014