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CSU Remembers Trustee Emeritus Bob Allen

Published January 29, 2018 in News

Clarks Summit University extends deep condolences to the family of Bob Allen, who passed away Saturday, January 27, 2018. Allen was an accomplished professional, long-serving member of the CSU Board of Trustees and trustee emeritus who also served as interim president of the university.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held at Heritage Baptist Church in Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania on Tuesday, January 30 at 6:30 p.m. Guests may greet the family  at a light reception following the service in the Heritage Family Room. In lieu of flowers, donations in his name can be sent to The Scranton School for Deaf & Hard of Hearing Children, 537 Venard Road, Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, 18411.

Mr. Bob Allen: Serving with a Smile

Bob Allen working on the phoneAllen was a gifted businessman from the time he was a young man. While still a senior in high school, he worked at one of the biggest John Deere factories in the nation, located in his hometown of Moline, Illinois. There, he worked alongside his former Boy Scout leader as he began honing his abilities. After a year in college, Allen began a training program with J.C. Penney CO, Inc. (He shares more about his professional journey in this CSU video from early 2017).

In 1965, after many years of promotions, Allen relocated to the J.C. Penney company headquarters in New York City, where he served as sales plan marketing manager until he retired. Allen served the J.C. Penney company for 35 years.

Allen became a member of the CSU Board of Trustees in 1970 and was named trustee emeritus in 2015. After his retirement from J.C. Penney in the late ’80s, he came to CSU to serve as the president’s assistant to Dr. Milo Thomson, helping with the administration of the school.

After more than 30 years of service on the Board, Allen became interim president during the 2000-2001 academic year. Allen was adored by students and always had a big smile and cheerful greeting. Many remember him standing before the student body every week in chapel, saying with cheerful inflection, “Good Monday morning to you!” His work ethic and dedication carried CSU through a major transition, encouraging students and faculty alike.

Mr. Russell Phelps, CSU Trustee Emeritus and friend of Allen for 70 years, admitted, “As we worked together at CSU, he impressed me as a very good leader. When he was chairman of the board, he got people to work together and accomplish things. As a president everyone liked him—that’s pretty difficult for a president to do! He’s always been an even-minded type of person, thoughtful in helping to solve problems and willing to do things that need to get done. We looked to the leadership of Bob Allen with very high esteem.”

A Treasured Legacy

Bob Allen with Datapipe golf teamDr. Jim Lytle, CSU president, describes, “Bob was a man of God in every way that you might want to define it—his godliness, his love for Gloy and his kids, his dedication to his church, his belief that his work was ministry. He gave countless hours of assistance to CSU over 45 years, even moving here after he retired to assist president Thompson and then assuming the presidency for a year. My mind is filled with memories of Bob’s assistance and encouragement.”

Bob Allen spent his life using his passions and abilities for the Kingdom of God. Behind him, he leaves Gloy, his wife of nearly 70 years; children Lisa (Allen) Konzelman and Robb Allen, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Bob and Gloy AllenJohn Greening is a CSU trustee and national representative of General Association of Regular Baptist Churches. He notes, “My wife and I have known Bob and Gloy for years to be one of the finest, godly, sweet-natured, happy, wise and encouraging couples we have ever met. It is impossible to talk of the one without the other. In our estimation, they were the perfect combination of what makes a Christlike marriage team.” Greening describes Allen as “the quintessential board member for the school,” recognizing the energy and resources he invested in CSU. “His handwritten personal notes of appreciation after a challenging meeting were treasured.” Greening recalls, “His smile always lifted spirits. I benefited from observing his business insights, not to mention his sartorial taste. I thank the Lord for this gentleman.”

“Bob Allen left an indelible mark on my life,” admits former chairman of CSU’s Board of Trustees, Don Shirk. In addition to all his professional roles, Allen’s impact was personal. “It was his friendship, thoughtfulness and, most importantly, his prayer for my family when we were going through a very difficult season that made an imprint on my life…Bob was a godly gentleman.”

Shirk continues, “He was a rare, choice servant that one only has the privilege to know a few times in a lifetime. Bob had two families—biological and CSU—both of which have been blessed by knowing a man who showed us what it looks like to love God. He leaves behind him a treasured legacy.”

Jessica Eddy is a junior in CSU’s Communications-Writing program. She is from Worthington, Pennsylvania.

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