Frederick M Clement, a descendant of United Empire Loyalists, was born in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, and received degrees in Agriculture at the Ontario Agricultural College (1911) and the University of Wisconsin (1922). After serving two years as a Lecturer in Horticulture at Macdonald College and two years as Director of the Vineland Experimental Station, Ontario, he came to UBC as Professor of Horticulture in 1916 and became Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture in 1919. In addition he served as Professor and Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics in 1940.

For thirty years he led the Faculty, making it a powerful force in the agricultural life of the Province. In the appointment of faculty, he sought high qualities of research and teaching and he insisted upon a willingness to participate in a program of extension that took the Faculty throughout the province. Within the Faculty, he constructed a flexible curriculum allowing students flexibility in designing their undergraduate program. In a five-year program (1918 to 1923) he was responsible for 33 courses, many of them short-term, off – campus courses involving 2555 students.

The Faculty of Agriculture thus became known to the growers and producers and Frederick became their respected friend. He served on Royal Commissions to investigate the problems of marketing and labour-disputes; his reports becoming the basis for legislation.

In recognition of his accomplishments and special interests, Frederick was appointed Professor and Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics in 1940. It is not an exaggeration to state that he built Agricultural Economics as a subject of advanced study in Western Canada. As Dean, he continued to teach. Throughout Canada, his former students occupied significant positions.

At his retirement in 1949 the University conferred upon him the Honorary Degree of DSc. The citation read as follows: “Mr. Chancellor, in presenting Frederick Moore Clement, Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of British Columbia, I feel that we are in his person offering a just and due tribute to the vital role of agriculture in the economy of our province and our country, at the same time that we honour one who has zealously promoted the welfare of the Faculty of Agriculture in the University of which he is one of the pioneers. His record of achievement in education and scholarship, in public service and administration, has indeed been beyond the ordinary in more than one province of the Dominion, and his influence has never been restricted to the professor’s classroom or the administrator’s office: there is no district in British Columbia which has not felt the benefit of his expert and affectionate interest. We believe that it is of importance that a University maintain close touch with the community it serves; there are many hundreds of our fellow-citizens who can bear witness to the energy, the intelligence, and the friendliness which he has displayed in carrying out this vital part of the University’s work. His acknowledged and unusual gifts as a teacher, his patient and many-sided skill as an administrator, his understanding of the relationship between true learning and practical affairs are the outcome of his experience not only as Professor and Head of the Department of Agricultural Economics during the last ten years, but also as Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture in this University for the past thirty. Yet his arduous duties have not prevented him from undertaking, on many occasions, special duties of major importance to the University and to the province. To one who has successfully piled Pelion upon Ossa, and Ossa upon Olympus, we are happy to award the degree of Doctor of Science, honoris causa.”

In retirement he was a frequent visitor to the campus and, when the Department of Extension celebrated its twenty-fifth year of existence, Dean Clement was a central figure, for he had been one of the founders. In May 1974, at a gathering that marked the 60th year of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Dean Clement was a clear and fascinating speaker.

Frederick Moore Clement died June 10, 1974, in his 90th year. His outstanding contributions to UBC make him one of its most notable pioneers.

R Blair and CR Nichols 2008