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Thu, April 18

Book Review: 'Six Who Came to Serve'

A few months ago, a customer asked if we had a book called "Six Who Came To Serve," which he said was about several people who came here to serve the Prescott community, but he did not know who had written it. Then another customer asked about the book. I couldn't find such a book through our normal distributors, but continued to pursue the search since not much has been written about that side of Prescott's history. I finally located the author, Prescott Daily Courier columnist Tom Cantlon, who was able to provide the books and to come to the store to talk about it and about his other book of columns, "Early Essays."

The six, Kathleen Murphy, Brad Newman, Max Bell, Gordon Glau, Don Ostendorf, and John Allen, all began work in the Prescott organizations they were to grow and direct for 30 years in the early 1960s. Cantlon weaves each of their stories together, beginning with their early histories and the effect that had in shaping their passionate desires to help the people in the Prescott community. Then he has each of them tell their stories, recounting just what they were able to accomplish and how they went about doing it.

According to Cantlon, for Brad Newman, putting his exceptional employees into immediate and practical work contributed greatly to success. John Allen, too, found success in putting his staff into immediate practical action, even if it entailed moving into a new building without heat in late November to get the job done. "Today you can't do that," Allen said.

For Kathleen Murphy, among other things, it took pluck, as when she gift-wrapped her dress as a consolation prize for a sexist high-up she had triumphed over.

Working well with other local agencies and innovation were other methods that brought success mentioned by Murphy as well as by Don Ostendorf, Greg Glau and Max Bell.

This review only touches on a few of the things it took for these six dedicated people to have such a profound impact on the Prescott community. Tom Cantlon can tell you about whole a lot more at 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15, at the Peregrine Book Company.

- by Susan Lang, Peregrine Book Company event coordinator

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