Paul F. Glenn, a successful commodities trader whose foundation invested more than $100 million into research related to aging and longevity, has died in Montecito at age 89.
He was a native of Pennsylvania who attended Princeton and Harvard Law School before embarking on a career as a commodities trader. Much of his success came after moving from Wall Street to Chicago, where he helped found several firms. He later owned stakes in oil and gas companies and co-founded Cycad Group, a venture capital firm based in Santa Barbara.
Glenn was an early adopter of the Pacific Coast Business Times, and helped launch the newspaper by hosting a lunch in the fall of 1999 that introduced founder Henry Dubroff to community and business leaders. An avid gardener, he devoted many hours to maintaining four acres of natural landscape at his home.
Glenn was an avid golfer famed for a vast collection of putters and for playing Valley Club of Montecito and Birnam Wood at a very fast pace.
According to a statement from Cycad Group, Glenn was the only grandson of aging grandparents, which gave him an early taste of aging-related health problems. “The experience left an imprint that formed the basis of his future philanthropic focus,” the firm’s statement said.
In 1965 he founded the Glenn Foundation for Medical Research, and in subsequent years it funded the Paul F. Glenn Centers for the Biology of Aging Research at Harvard, Stanford, MIT, the Salk Institute, the Mayo Clinic, Princeton, the Einstein College of Medicine, University of Michigan and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato. The Glenn Foundation has funded more than $100 million in research, the statement said.
He served on the advisory council of the National Institute on Aging and was a board member of the American Aging Association and the American Federation for Aging Research, and a founding trustee of the Buck Institute. He was a resident of Casa Dorinda when he passed away on Sept. 29.
A memorial will be held when the COVID-19 pandemic is sufficiently under control to allow large gatherings, the statement said.