Glen Russell was born in Rensselaer County, New York, in 1925. Glen Russell received his B.S. (1947) and M.S. (1948) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Chemistry. He received a Doctor of Philosophy degree (1951) from Purdue University.
He worked as a Research Associate (1954-1961) in the General Electric Research Laboratory at Schenectady, New York. Russell served as an Associate Professor (1958-1961), and a Professor (1961-1998) in the Department of Chemistry at Iowa State University.
Russell received the American Chemical Society Award in Petroleum Chemistry (1965); the Iowa Award sponsored by the Iowa City section of the American Chemical Society (1972); the Midwest Award of the American Chemical Society sponsored by the St. Louis section (1974); the American Chemical Society’s James Flack Norris Award in Physical Organic Chemistry (1983); and the Iowa Governor’s Science Medal (1988).
Russell was an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow (1959-1961), a Fulbright Lecturer at the University of Wurzburg, Germany (1966), a Reilly Lecturer at the University of Notre Dame (1966), a John S. Guggenheim Foundation Fellow at the Centre d’Etude Nucleaires de Grenoble, France (1972), a Fellow of Japan Society for Promotion of Science (1983), and a Visiting Professor at the University of Grenoble, France (1985).
He served as a chairman of the Gordon Research Conferences on Hydrocarbon Chemistry and of Radical Ions; was on the Editorial Board of the Journal of the American Chemical Society (1966-1975), and for the Journal of Organic Chemistry (1986-1988). Russell authored over 275 research publications and presented over 350 invited lectures.
Russell died on January 1, 1998 and is buried in the Iowa State University Cemetery.
He was married to Martha E. Russell, an Adjunct Associate Professor of Chemistry at Iowa State University. She passed away in 2014.