Remembering Frank Fisher

Remembering Frank Fisher

It is with great sadness that we let you know that our colleague and friend, Frank Fisher, has died. Frank was a towering force in the field of antitrust economics, microeconomics, and industrial organization, and his accomplishments are many, including a distinguished teaching career at MIT and as a John Bates Clark Medal recipient.

CRA was fortunate to have Frank as a colleague since 1967. Frank served as a Senior Consultant and member of our Board for more than 40 years, including a tenure as Chairman and Vice Chairman. He left an indelible mark on CRA with his intellect, collegiality, and compassion. Among his many notable cases with us, he was the chief economic witness for IBM in US v. IBM and for the Department of Justice in US v. Microsoft. He also authored or co-authored numerous well-known articles and books, including some with CRA colleagues, Folded, Spindled and Mutilated: Economic Analysis and US vs. IBM (1983, with John McGowan and Joen Greenwood) and “Janis Joplin’s Yearbook and the Theory of Damages” (with Craig Romaine, Journal of Accounting, Auditing and Finance, winter/spring 1990).

Jim Burrows shared these thoughts, which perfectly sum up what many of his colleagues, clients, and those of us fortunate enough to have encountered him remember about Frank:

“Anyone who knew Frank Fisher would agree that he was a brilliant and creative thinker, and his colleagues in the economics profession would all agree that he was one of the greatest economists of his generation.

We at CRA appreciated these qualities. But what set Frank apart was his humanity and his generosity. He knew he was brilliant—how could he not—but he was also humble and respected the opinions of everyone with whom he came in contact. He was generous with his time with all staff at CRA, and he solicited ideas from everyone with whom he worked. He was always quick to compliment the people with whom he worked and to recognize—to clients, to supervisors, and to other staff--the contributions of each individual to the work product. I learned over time that in his evaluations of staff, Frank never had any negative views even when they might have been well-earned. Working with Frank was always fun and intellectually rewarding. And it didn’t hurt that he was quick-witted and could find humor in anything.

Frank set the tone of CRA’s culture, and his influence survives to the present day.  He also put CRA on the map in the litigation world and it is safe to say that CRA would not be the same, or possibly even exist, without him.”

Over the coming weeks and months, we will find ways to celebrate Frank’s many contributions and legacy at CRA; I welcome your remembrances and reflections.


Paul Maleh