Eldon Fredericks was born May 16, 1934, in Wakarusa, Indiana. He received a bachelor's degree in agriculture and a master's degree in extension communications, both from Purdue. He began his career as an information officer in the Army Ordinance Training Command in Maryland in 1956.
Following military service, he became publications editor at Purdue in 1958, serving until 1967, when he moved to the University of Minnesota as publications editor. He then served as acting head of the department of information and agricultural journalism at Minnesota from 1974 to 1977 before going to Michigan State to become manager of extension research information.
Fredericks worked for one year at the U. S. Department of Agriculture in Washington in 1980 with the Science and Education Administration. He returned to USDA in 1989 to work another year with the extension service on national computer networking. He was also a leader in the use of the Internet and World Wide Web technology.
He returned to Purdue in 1990 as an education technology specialist. Fredericks retired from Purdue June 30, 1997.