Paul Glenn Retires From LivingWell After 45 Years
Story by Tiffany Doss
Rosa Parks, Barry Black, Ben and Candy Carson and Johnny Johnson are just a handful of public figures and authors Paul Glenn has had the opportunity to meet. Glenn says his 45-year ministry at LivingWell (formerly Potomac Adventist Book Center) in Silver Spring, Md., has been a blessing as he’s been able to forge friendships through these interactions.
“Johnny Johnson was in the marines for 20 years, served as secretary of the navy and worked for the government in various capacities. I lined him up to do a signing for his autobiography,” says Glenn. “He and I kept in touch afterwards.” Johnny was a Baptist, but as time passed, he became more convicted to explore Adventism. He called Glenn to help him find an Adventist pastor. “It felt funny to find a pastor for him in Arizona, while I lived in Maryland, but I called around,” shares Glenn. “I was pleased to discover that my friend Martin Weber was a pastor in their town and he was able to study with Johnny and his wife. They later came into the church under profession of faith.” Eventually the Pacific Press Publishing Association published Johnson’s autobiography, and he included a page about the impact the Adventist Book Center had on his life.
“Rosa Parks was possibly the most notable person who came into the store,” recalls Glenn. “We had several thousand attend—the line extended out the door and down the street. Knowing that due to her age, she wouldn’t be able to sign everyone’s books, we made arrangements to have commemorative bookmarks with her signature printed on them for our customers. She personally autographed several books for our staff. It’s something I’ve cherished through the years.”
Now after 45 years, Glenn (pictured with Dale Galusha, president of Pacific Press Publishing Association) is retiring. He says, “I’ve worked for the same organization my entire career. Through the years, some people told me I should move around. I remember one publisher saying I could be the top manager in another store, so why don’t I leave? When I told him I liked where I was at, he said, ‘One day you’ll come to retirement and wished you’d moved around.’ All I thought was, ‘Well, when the time comes, I would wish I was still in Potomac.’ I have never regretted staying. I don’t think I would have been as happy anywhere else.” Glenn has worked for LivingWell in a number of management capacities and will retire as book department manager in March.