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Frank Harrison

June 5, 2009 -

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Frank Harrison, former associate professor of speech and drama and director of Trinity University’s debate program. Professor Harrison died earlier this week at his home in Galveston. He was 69.

Professor Harrison had a remarkable career in several fields during his lifetime, serving in academia, law, the military, and government. His favorite field, however, was forensics and he was the driving force in reestablishing Trinity’s debate program when he came to the University in 1988.

He taught several courses in the speech and drama department, and was very active in the life of the University, serving as chair of the Publications Board, the Committee on Scholarships and Financial Aid, and the First Year Seminar Steering Committee. He was also presiding judge of the University Court and parliamentarian of the Faculty Assembly.

Outside Trinity, Professor Harrison was deeply involved with several academic organizations related to speech and debate including serving as president of the American Debate Association. He presented numerous publications at academic conferences on free speech and debate.

After he retired from Trinity in 2006, Professor Harrison volunteered as an adviser to the debate program, traveling with Trinity teams to offer instruction or help as a judge.

He was elected to the United States House of Representatives from Pennsylvania’s 11th Congressional District in 1982 and served one term, and was a member of the Committee on Education and Labor and the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. After leaving Congress, Professor Harrison became the city attorney for Wilkes-Barre before coming to Trinity.

He received a bachelor’s degree from King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. and a juris doctor from Harvard Law School. He was admitted to the Pennsylvania bar in 1965 and practiced law for several years in Wilkes-Barre.

Donations may be made in memory of Professor Harrison to the Trinity University debate program.

© 2009 Trinity University