by Anthony DeMarco
| September 18, 2014
The cost estimating community mourns the loss of a true pioneer this week. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family. Frank Freiman has a special place in the history of PRICE Systems as his innovative work is directly responsible for the company’s existence today. This is a classic case of where one man can truly made a difference. Thousands of estimators across the world have benefited and continue to benefit from his accomplishments.
Frank began studying the applications of statistical quality control as an officer in the US Army during World War II. It was this experience that led him to pursue graduate studies at NYU where he began examining cost estimating relationships or CERs. It was during this time that Frank began early development of his weight based production model, which would later serve as the fundamental assumption for the first commercial parametric cost estimating model, PRICE H.
After graduation Frank was employed at Federal Manufacturing and Engineering in Brooklyn, NY. It was here that Frank analyzed the cost and physical parameters of more than 700 products. From this analysis he developed a method for "normalizing" the effects of production, schedule, organizational experience, and product staging. His study also included the effects of differing production schedules on cost as well as the impact that mature technology had on reducing manufacturing costs.
In 1957, Frank was hired by RCA Missile & Surface Radar Division in Moorestown, NJ to lead its cost estimating department. His main responsibility was to review cost proposals. In 1969, Frank began to integrate his database of CER’s into a basic time-share computer (BTSS) which was connected by a phone line. This was the origin of the first PRICE model.
In 1975, Frank became the first Director of the newly developed PRICE Systems business unit. Frank would also later be instrumental in the establishment of ISPA, the International Society of Parametric Analysts. The Frank Freiman award is the society’s highest honor given to individuals recognized for exceptional achievement in the area of parametric cost estimation.
Frank had retired to Pompona Beach, FL and passed away on December 13, 2009.
A special thanks to Hank Apgar, much of the bio information came from his article "Who is Frank Freiman" published in Parametric World. Please add any remembrances to our comments section.