Clinton Clair Glenn, Jr., former pastor of First
Presbyterian Church in Mount Vernon dead at 75
Clinton Clair Glenn Jr., a former pastor of
Brown Memorial Presbyterian Church in
whose activism resulted in the establishment of
several educational facilities and housing for
the needy, died Feb. 4 of cancer at his
Lutherville home. He was 75.
Mr. Glenn, the son of a laborer, was born and
New Castle, Pa. After dropping out of
Pennsylvania State University,
he enlisted in the Navy.
After being discharged in 1956, Mr. Glenn worked
in sales and service for the elevator division
of Westinghouse Electric Corp.
After earning a bachelor's degree in history
University of Maryland in 1964, he
enrolled at the
Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.
Ordained a Presbyterian minister in 1967, Mr.
Glenn began his career at First Presbyterian
Church in Omaha, Neb.
After being named pastor of Brown Memorial the
next year, Mr. Glenn launched
In 1969, Mr. Glenn was joined by the Rev. F.
Lyman "Barney" Farnham, then rector of
Bolton Street's Memorial Episcopal Church,
in founding Bolton Hill Ecumenical School.
Also that year, Mr. Glenn befriended
civil rights activists the Rev. Marion C.
Bascom, who was minister of Douglas Memorial
Community Church; the Rev. Vernon C. Dobson,
pastor of Union Baptist Church; and the Rev.
Forrest C. Stith, pastor of Sharp
Street Memorial United Methodist Church.
They coordinated ecumenical interests, community
programs and political activities, and
established an ecumenical Lenten series in 1969.
They then turned their attention to the Upton
neighborhood near Douglas Memorial, and with the
assistance of Lena Boone, head of the Upton
Citizens Council, formulated a renewal plan and
a corporation. The clergymen named it the
Greenwillow Corp., with Mr. Glenn serving as its
"The name Greenwillow was jokingly suggested,
the joke being that it was the street noted for
its red-light district," said Phyllis B.
McIntosh, an old friend and Mr. Glenn's
companion of six years. "However, Marion Bascom
said, 'Wait a minute. Let's do that. I think we
should name it Greenwillow to make a bad name
They were successful in raising millions of
federal dollars to build the low-cost housing
"The Greenwillow project is still very active,"
said Mr. Bascom. "He gave a whole lot of effort
and life to Greenwillow."
Mr. Glenn then took on an abandoned building
behind his church, which he transformed into the
Bolton Center, a neighborhood recreation center.
Mr. Glenn also was the driving force behind the
establishment of the Brown Memorial tutoring
program, Bolton Hill Nursery and a
Meals on Wheels program that operated out
of the church's kitchen.
In 1973, he founded
The Learning Place, a program for
selected children from Eutaw Marshburn
Elementary School on Eutaw Place.
Bernard J. "Bernie" Wulff, a retired Baltimore
architect, was a longtime active member of Brown
Memorial and a friend of Mr. Glenn's.
"He was a very strong individual who didn't pull
any punches," recalled Mr. Wulff. "His preaching
style was very intellectual and scholarly. It
gave meaning to what was recorded in the Bible."
In 1975, Mr. Glenn was called to be pastor of
First Presbyterian Church of
From 1978 to 1984, Mr. Glenn struggled with a
gradual loss of faith and entered a two-year
pastoral counseling program at Blanton
Peale Psychoanalytic Program in Manhattan.
"I thought it would energize my ministerial life
and at the same time equip me to be a better
counselor," he wrote in his recently completed
Mr. Glenn retired from First Presbyterian Church
of Mount Vernon in 1990 and established a
psychotherapy practice in
In addition, he became associated with the
Redford Group, later BellRedfordGlenn, where he
did psychometrics and
After BellRedfordGlenn dissolved, Mr. Glenn and
his wife established the International Center
for Management Education Inc., which they
operated until 1999.
After Mr. Glenn's wife of 47 years, the former
Lucille Nott, died in 2001, he remained in
New York City until moving to his
daughter's home in Bethesda. The next year, he
moved into Ms. McIntosh's Lutherville home.
Her husband, Francis Eugene "Gene" Belt, who
died in 2001, had been Brown Memorial's organist
for many years.
Mr. Glenn enjoyed reading, listening to jazz and
traveling to New York City and Tuscany, where he
lived several months each year.
A memorial service for Mr. Glenn will be held at
2 p.m. March 7 at his former church, Park and
Also surviving are a son, David J. Glenn of
Hawks, Mich.; a daughter, Cynthia D. Souza of
Bethesda; two brothers, David Glenn of Conneaut,
Pa., and Jim Glenn of Fort Wayne, Ind.; four
grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.