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Community Services Director With “Can-Do” Attitude Dies
Story by Taashi Rowe
Ron Wylie, executive director of Potomac Conference’s Adventist Community Services of Greater Washington (ACSGW), passed away last Tuesday. Wylie became part-time executive director of ACSGW in 2004, and led the not-for-profit coalition of seven churches doing community services and development in Silver Spring and Takoma Park, Md., “with vision and enthusiasm,” says Les Pitton, ACSGW chairman.
Describing Wylie’s passing as a “tragic loss,” Pitton says, “Ron’s enthusiasm, can-do attitude and unique ability to see the forest beyond the trees, is what made him such a special person. He will truly be missed.”
Pitton marveled at Wylie’s ability to connect with community leaders, politicians and other agencies and associations. He also speaks highly of Wylie’s work at ACSGW. “It was under Ron’s administration that the cash drain was stopped, partial debt was paid and creative revenue programs were created,” Pitton recalls. “During Ron’s time leading the organization, he strengthened governance; established new board committees, committee charters, board self-evaluation surveys and term limits; and revised bylaws.”
However, he was most impressed by Wylie’s generosity. “Often, he would pay someone’s rent out of his own pocket just to help them get on their feet again. He assisted an employee’s grandchild with tuition so she could attend a [Seventh-day] Adventist school. That was Ron,” Pitton says.
“Ron Wylie was the epitome of the word ‘commitment’,” says Charles Tapp, senior pastor of the Sligo church [LINK sligochurch.org] in Takoma Park, Md., one of ACSGW’s founding churches. “He wasn’t about just talking. He lived his commitment to others.”
A trained lawyer who spent many years in federal service, Wylie went into private practice in 1987 and specialized in healthcare law and government relations. He was also active in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He served on the boards of Washington Adventist Hospital in Takoma Park, Md.; Highland View Academy in Hagerstown, Md.; Spencerville Adventist Academy in Spencerville, Md.; Miracle Meadows School in Salem, W.Va.; the Adventist World Radio in Silver Spring, Md.; and many others.
He was the first president of the Columbia Union Adventist Attorney’s Association, now known as the Adventist Lawyers Association of Greater Washington. He also served as president of the Columbia Union chapter of the Adventist-laymen’s Services & Industries (ASI) for several years, and served as a vice president of the national ASI.
Wylie leaves behind his wife, Junamae Wegner; son, Rod and his wife, Nicole, and two grandsons Jacob and Brayden. Margaret Pascoe, his first wife, preceded him in death.
Wylie’s funeral was held Monday, May 21 near his home in Marriottsville, Md. There will also be a memorial service at Chesapeake Conference’s Spencerville church in Silver Spring, Md., where he was a member. The service will be Wednesday, May 30 at 11 a.m.
Click here to view a recent video of Wylie talking about his work with ACSGW.
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