Excela CEO and Ohio Entrepreneur Join Honored Greensburg Salem Alumni; late coach gets new award

A hospital executive and an entrepreneur with an engineering background will join prominent alumni honorees at the Greensburg Salem School District this year.

John Sphon of Greensburg, a member of the class of 1975, and Bill Lendl, a graduate of 1980 who lives in West Chester, Ohio, will be recognized April 21 at a dinner hosted by the Greensburg Salem Education Foundation.

Sphon, who is expected to retire at the end of March as CEO of Westmoreland County-based Excela Health, plans to continue as administrator of the recently combined Excela and Butler healthcare systems. Lendl began his career as a process engineer at Procter & Gamble and now runs a wealth management firm and a real estate company, ventures he started after retiring from a corporate career.

Steven Snider, cross-country and track and field coach of the late Greensburg Salem, will posthumously receive the foundation’s first distinguished service award.

According to the foundation, the Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes district graduates for “dedication to their profession, to public service and to the community and, most importantly, for being a role model for young people.”

Sphon has 37 years of experience as a healthcare executive. Previously, he served as Vice President of Excela Health Diversified Services and the Health System’s Physician Practice Network.

Previously, he was president of Excela’s MedCare equipment company and a board member of Westmoreland County Economic Growth Connection.

Lendl holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Penn State and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Notre Dame.

His career took him to Europe, California, Maine, Texas and Indiana. He was a site manager at a Merck pharmaceutical site that became the third largest private employer in Butler County, Ohio.

Lendl sits on the Miami University Business Technology Education Board. He was recognized as Citizen of the Year in 2014 in West Chester, where he was appointed to local government and events committees.

He is one of the founders of Flags Over West Chester. The program raises money for local Boy Scouts, who place American flags on nearly 600 participating properties during six patriotic holidays.

Snider died last year, aged 72, after a long battle with heart complications. He taught physical education and health at Greensburg Salem for 36 years and also coached middle and high school wrestling teams and cross country teams. He coached the women’s cross country team to a PIAA championship in 1993.

He also coached at Saint Vincent College.

He is remembered by his former players as an effective motivator who boosted his teams with year-round conditioning and pithy pre-game sayings while young coaches valued him as a mentor.

The Greensburg Salem Athletic Complex was named in his honor.

Snider’s sons, Nathan and Matthew, also became coaches.

Nathan Snider noted that one of his father’s favorite sayings was, “It’s a beautiful day.”

“He touched a lot of people,” Nathan Snider said.

Dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at Ferrante’s Lakeview restaurant in Hempfield, after cocktails from 5:30 p.m.

The cost to attend is $30 per person. Visit gsedfound.com to register for the event. Email [email protected] for more information.

Jeff Himler is an editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Jeff by email at [email protected] or via Twitter.


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