Frederic Sterling Lee
1949 - 2014
Lee, Frederic Sterling (known to his family as Fritz) died October 23, 2014 in Webster Groves, Missouri. He was a Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City since 2000. He fought his whole life for social and economic justice for all people. Dr. Lee was internationally known for his work on alternative microeconomic theory. His approach to economics was always grounded in the real world which kept him outside the mainstream of orthodox economics. He authored two books: Post Keynesian Price Theory and A History of Heterodox Economics. He authored, co-authored and edited numerous other books and articles, including: Oxford Economics & Oxford Economists with Warren Young; Radical Economics and Labor with Jon Bekken; The Heterodox Economics of Gardiner C. Means with Warren Samuels; Evaluating Economic Research in a Contested Discipline with Wolfram Elsner; and Social Provisioning, Embeddedness and Modeling the Economy. He was also internationally recognized for his work to promote a community among alternative approaches to economic theory under the umbrella term of heterodox economics. He was founder of the Association for Heterodox Economics in England and the international Heterodox Economics Newsletter. He was active in many other economic associations and served as editor of the American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 2009-2013. Dr. Lee previously taught at the University of California-Riverside in Riverside, CA, 1981-1984; Roosevelt University in Chicago, IL, 1984-1990; Staffordshire Polytechnic in Stokeon-Trent, England, 1990-1991; and DeMontfort University in Leicester, England, 1991-2000. He was a proud, card-carrying member of the Industrial Workers of the World (known as Wobblies) since 1985. While living in Chicago he was President of the IWW General Executive Board. In that role, he was instrumental in retrieving for the IWW a remnant of the ashes of Joe Hill, which had found its way into the National Archives in Washington, DC. While living in Leicester, England, he was active in the Leicester Secular Society, which works for an inclusive and plural society free from religious privilege, prejudice and discrimination. He served as President of the Secular Society from 1994 to 2000, promoting their activities and preserving their 130 year-old Victorian building. Born in Nyack, NY on November 24, 1949, Dr. Lee grew up in Fairfax County Virginia with his father Sterling Lee, a lawyer with the National Labor Relations Board and his mother Marian Burks Keddy who was active with the League of Women Voters. He earned a BA in History from Frostburg State College in Maryland in 1972 and a PhD in Economics from Rutgers University in New Jersey in 1983. At Frostburg he met his wife, Ruth (nee Buschman) on a hayride. Happily married for 41 years, they enjoyed living and traveling all over the US and the world. Places they lived include: New York City; Riyadh, Saudia Arabia; Edinburgh, Scotland; New Jersey; Riverside, CA; Chicago, IL; Stoke-on-Trent and Leicester, England. They also traveled in India, China, Australia, Pakistan, Lebanon, Iran, Mexico, Canada and throughout Europe and the United States. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his beloved daughter, Sally Sterling Anderson who is married to Michael Scott Anderson and two beautiful granddaughters, Molly Ruth Anderson and Chloe Viola Anderson. He is also survived by his stepmother Patricia Lee; sister, Kathryn Lee Wilson; brother John Keddy Lee; stepbrothers Mark Crawford, John Crawford, and Peter Crawford; and stepsisters Jane Webster, Maura Blomquist, Anne Collins, and Suzanne Crawford. Tragically, he died of lung cancer despite having never smoked. Services: A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, November 8th, 1:00pm at the Ethical Society of St. Louis, 9001 Clayton Road, St. Louis, Missouri. His ashes will be scattered at a later date at the Haymarket Martyrs Monument in Chicago, IL. Memorial contributions can be made to the Frederic S. Lee Heterodox Economics Scholarship Fund which is housed at the Kansas City Community Foundation. Donations can be made at
Published by St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Oct. 29, 2014.
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Memorial service
Ethical Society of St. Louis
9001 Clayton Road, St. Louis, MO
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3 Entries
Professor Lee opened my mind to many new perspectives. I am very greatfull I could meet him. All the best on your way.
November 24, 2014
I will always have fond memories of Dr. Lee from my days at the University of MO-Kansas City. He always kept in touch with former students near and far and was interested in our lives beyond UMKC. He will be missed.

Michelle Freeman
Michelle Freeman
November 7, 2014
Fred was everything a true academic should be. Our department misses him every day. There is no way to replace someone who put students ahead of self.
Peter Eaton
November 5, 2014
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