Frederick W. M. Janney, 59, director of personnel at the Central Intelligence Agency, died yesterday after collapsing while playing squash at the Metropolitan Club.

Mr. Janney was pronounced dead of cardiac arrest at George Washington University Hospital at 4:11 p.m. after unsuccessful attempts at resuscitation.

A decorated Navy flier in World War II, Mr. Janney "had been in intelligence for many years, and made a very important contribution." according to William E. Colby, a former director of the CIA.

Another former agency official said that during the 1950s, Mr. Janney established a reputation as a highly effective analyst of Soviet affairs.

In those years, he was attached to the Office of Current Intelligence, which provided daily and weekly analyses on unfolding events.

In this office, according to the official, Mr. Janney was "one of the stars."

As an analyst in a highly sensitive area of great interest to officials at the top levels of government, Mr. Janney was a "totally nonpolitical person," who was "dedicated to objectivity," the former agency official said.

The holder of a bachelor of arts degree from Princeton University, Mr. Janney received a master of arts degree from Yale in 1948 before coming here to join the CIA.

In the mid-1960s, Mr. Janney, who had held several special assignments aiding in disarmament negotiations, spent about a year in the Pentagon's office of international security affairs. He returned to the CIA as special assistant to the agency's executive director.

Before becoming chief of personnel in 1973, he had served for several years as executive officer of CIA's Directorate of Science and Technology.

In the personnel post, according to one retired CIA veteran, Mr. Janney was "low-key... thoughtful... sensitive," while quickly mastering the intricate details of the job.

During World War II, he was a naval officer who piloted a torpedo bomber in major engagements in the Pacific theater. He won the Navy Cross.

He was known as an avid yachtsman and a golf and tennis enthusiast.

In addition to his wife, Mary, of the home in Northwest Washington, survivors include two sons, Chris and Peter.