Longtime West Hills College booster Ted Frame passes away

From West Hills College
Longtime West Hills College booster Ted Frame passes away

Ted Frame, a staunch advocate and supporter of the West Hills Community College District, has passed away at age 86. Frame served the WHCCD for over 50 years. His service included being a member of the West Hills Community College Foundation Board for several terms and serving as that board’s vice president for a time.

He was also one of the original proponents for the building of a college in Coalinga. Over the years, he was a trusted source of advice, support and assistance.

“We were all very surprised and saddened after hearing of Ted’s passing,” said WHCCD Chancellor Dr. Frank Gornick. “He was a wonderful supporter of the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, of the city of Coalinga—which he called home for many years— and of West Hills College. All of us will miss Ted greatly.”

In addition to his work with the Foundation, Frame was also one of the leaders of the campaign for the bond measure that originally funded the building of the West Hills College Coalinga campus. The then Coalinga College opened in 1956. 

Born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on June 27, 1929, Frame was a practicing lawyer and alumnus of Stanford University and UCLA. Frame humbly described himself as a “poor kid who lucked out with scholarships and working” in getting to attend the prestigious schools.

Frances Squire, executive director of the West Hills Community College Foundation, remembers Frame as one of the district’s great backers.

“West Hills College and the Coalinga community have lost a great friend and champion with the passing of Ted Frame,” she said. “It was my great privilege and honor to have known him.”

Arriving in Coalinga around 1953, Frame had said that he only intended to stay a year or two. However, he has left a lasting impression.

He was well known in Coalinga as part of the law practice of Frame and Matsumoto and has also left a physical mark on the community: Frame Park in downtown Coalinga.

Throughout his life, he valued education and saw the WHCCD as a way for the community members it serves to excel academically and get job training. 

“Not everyone has the opportunity to go to Stanford,” Frame said in an article written about him during his time as a Foundation board member. “It’s critical to have a college to provide educational opportunity for local residents. It’s hard to get anywhere in our society without formal education. We’re going in the right direction.”

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