Memorial Service Planned for Prof. Melvin Friedlander

Posted: August 25, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Melvin Friedlander, associate professor of public and international affairs at George Mason for more than 20 years, died on Sunday, Aug. 20, while traveling in Portugal. The cause of death was identified as heart failure.

A memorial service is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 27, at the Judea Memorial Gardens located at 16225 Bachelors Forest Road in Olney, Md.

Robert Dudley, chair of the Public and International Affairs Department, described Friedlander’s passing as a shock and “real loss” to the department and the university.

“Mel had been at the university for many years and had developed many good friendships,” said Dudley. “He was also a solid member of our department and someone who generated a great deal of affection from many of his students. The essential thing about Mel is that he loved teaching and he loved his students.”

Dudley also praised Friedlander for the active role he played in the department’s study abroad courses.

Friedlander joined Mason’s faculty in 1984 following a career in the Defense Intelligence Agency where he served as an analyst.

While at Mason, he published two books: “Sadat and Begin: The Domestic Politics of Peacemaking” and “Conviction and Credence: U.S. Policymaking in the Middle East.” The second book was highly regarded and was nominated for the Grawemeyer Award given to the “best idea promoting improved relations between nations published or presented between 1987 – 1992.”

Friedlander is survived by his wife, Sandra, their four children, Ellen, Marcy, Sharon and Danny, and their four grandchildren, Avi, Adam, Michael and Hanna.

Dudley said plans are currently under way to schedule a memorial service at George Mason. Details will be shared with the campus community as they become available.

Write to at