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                 Wayne Johnston                     John Zidansek

Wayne Johnston to retire from Sharon Regional after 36 years of service; new president and CEO named

Through high school and college, when Wayne Johnston first worked at Sharon General Hospital as a dietary aide, janitor, orderly, laboratory aide, and phlebotomist, he had a clear vision of wanting to become the president of the hospital. Now, after more than 36 years of service (18 of those as President and CEO), Johnston has announced his retirement plans. During Johnston’s career, Sharon General Hospital grew from a community hospital with 655 employees and a budget of less than $10 million, to Sharon Regional Health System, a large, multi-specialty health care provider with 17 satellite locations, 1776 employees, and a $138 million annual budget.

Johnston was responsible for the development of a number of advanced specialty services, including the Heart Institute (along with Mercer County’s only open-heart surgery and angioplasty program); construction of a free-standing Cancer Care Center and Outpatient Behavioral Health Services Center in Hermitage; development of satellite Family Medicine Centers in Brookfield and Mercer; expansion of the Emergency Care Center and addition of Express Care Services; establishment of a Women’s Center along with the Shenango Valley’s only Level II Nursery for newborns with special needs; an inpatient rehabilitation unit; expanded inpatient Behavioral Health Services including a Child & Adolescent Unit; Skilled Care Center; Advanced Wound Recovery Center; Ear/Nose/Throat and Hearing Center; and much more.

Johnston also played a major role in the significant growth of the Health System’s medical staff in both primary care and specialty care; plus the addition of numerous other specialty services that resulted in Sharon Regional becoming Mercer County’s largest employer.

James E. Feeney, Chairman of the Sharon Regional Board of Directors, praised Johnston for his years of dedicated service to both Sharon Regional and the community. “While many community hospitals have been absorbed by large hospital systems or have even closed, Mr. Johnston has remained steadfast in his dedication in seeing Sharon Regional succeed as a community hospital locally controlled by a voluntary, uncompensated, board of directors made up of community leaders with the goal of meeting local health care needs and priorities,” Feeney stated. “The Health System and Shenango Valley community have greatly benefited from his leadership.”

Sharon Regional’s Board of Directors has unanimously endorsed John A. Zidansek to succeed Johnston as Sharon Regional’s next President and CEO. Zidansek will begin his new position on August 1. Zidansek joined Sharon Regional in September of 1987 as Vice President for Patient Care Services, was promoted three years later to Senior Vice President, and in 1991 was appointed to his current position of Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. He has served a key role in the growth and development of the Health System with Johnston. Prior to joining Sharon Regional, Zidansek served as an Assistant Executive Director for Humana Hospitals, Inc. in their Florida region. He earned both his undergraduate degree and Master’s in Hospital Administration from the University of Pittsburgh.

Zidansek is actively involved in the community, serving as a board member of the Mercer County Behavioral Health Commission and Shenango Valley YMCA. He is also a member of the Shenango Valley Industrial Development Corporation and American College of Healthcare Executives. He and his wife, Cathy, reside in Hermitage with their three children, Jenna, Hannah, and Michael.

Feeney expressed the board’s confidence in selecting Zidansek to succeed Johnston as the new president and CEO of Sharon Regional. “We feel extremely fortunate to have someone of Mr. Zidansek’s caliber assume the leadership role at Sharon Regional,” Feeney said. “His years of health care experience and commitment to the community make him an ideal choice to lead Sharon Regional into the future.”

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