The National Association of Scholars mourns the passing of Foster S. Friess.
Foster was a first-generation college graduate, born in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. He was valedictorian, class president, student council president, and captain of the basketball, track, golf, and baseball teams. At the University of Wisconsin, Foster earned a degree in business administration, served as president of his fraternity, was named one of the “ten most outstanding senior men,” and won the heart of Lynnette Estes, whom he married in 1962. Foster and Lynn had two sons and two daughters, and fifteen grandchildren.
Foster was a generous supporter of the NAS’s work, as he was generous to the numerous charities that he supported. He and Lynn were guided by their commitment to Galatians 6:2 “Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
His philanthropic activities were responses to real-world problems and included providing water purification units in Sri Lanka, Malawi, and Haiti; funding mobile medical vans that serve thousands of people in poor areas of the United States; and funding businesses for widows in Haiti alongside the launch of the Haiti Renewal Fund after that country’s 2010 earthquake.
Foster often said that his number-one mentor is Jesus. “He was the greatest role model of all. His treatment of people, his forgiveness, and his universal love are inspirational. Jesus spoke about the importance of reaching out to the poor. His words taught me that our money, our health, our family—they aren’t ours but his. We are not the owners—we are the stewards.”
The NAS mourns the passing of Foster: a committed father and husband, generous friend, and fervent follower of Christ.