Glenn Michael Oliver was born in Birmingham, Alabama on June 28, 1950 to Kenneth and Connie Oliver. As an Air Force family the Olivers lived many places before settling in Harbor Springs, Michigan when Glenn was a young teen. In 1968 he graduated high school in Harbor Springs and went on to attend Western Michigan University, where he received a bachelor's degree in geology and secondary education. He began his teaching career in Ionia, Michigan, and later attended Michigan State University where he studied elementary education. In 1976 he began a 3 year course of summer studies at the University of Michigan's Biological Field Station that led to a master's degree in biology. It is there that he met Valerie Smith, who would later become his wife and draw him to Alaska.
Glenn moved to Alaska in 1981 and began his teaching career at Dimond-Mears Secondary School. In 1985 the new Mears Jr. High was built and Glenn headed the science department of that new school, where he remained as a teacher until 1996. His final teaching assignment was as a teacher of gifted and talented students at Kincaid Elementary. At Kincaid School Glenn found a receptive community that supported and encouraged his activity oriented teaching and thrived on the opportunity to teach enthusiastic students. There he built a greenhouse and an apple orchard to support his hands on approach to teaching and involved the entire school in gardening projects over the years.
Glenn's sense of adventure and curiosity of the natural world defined who he was. Whether he was kayaking, fishing, or gardening he was always planning his next adventure. He is survived by his son Nolan Oliver, age 23, of Anchorage Alaska as well as his former wife Valerie Oliver, his sisters Susan (Phil Manke) Oliver, Karen (Tom) Fett, Wendy (Bob Tinker) Oliver, and niece Natalie Fett. A celebration of his life will take place Friday March 2nd, 6pm at Tanglewood Lake Club House.
Published in adn.com from Mar. 1 to Mar. 2, 2012