Russ Spray Named CEO of Southern Tennessee Regional Health System Winchester-Sewanee

February 19, 2018

Southern Tennessee Regional Health System Winchester-Sewanee (STRHS Winchester-Sewanee) today announced that William R. (Russ) Spray has been named chief executive officer (CEO), a role he previously held from 1999 to 2008. He has served as the hospital’s interim CEO since November 2017.   

“From his organizational leadership skills and infectious enthusiasm to his commitment to ensuring high-quality care, Russ has proven to be a vital asset to STRHS Winchester-Sewanee and its community,” said Cherie Sibley, chief operating officer (COO) of LifePoint Health’s Central Group. “We are thrilled to welcome him back to Winchester. His history here and love for this region combined with his tremendous depth of healthcare experience make him the ideal person to lead the hospital into the future.”

With nearly 40 years of healthcare experience, Spray is well-versed in hospital operations, including physician recruitment and retention, community relations, and quality and patient safety. During his first tenure as CEO of STRHS Winchester-Sewanee he initiated a major hospital and medical office building expansion, developed an abundance of new services for the community, and recruited an exceptional team of physicians to serve on the medical staff.

Following his years of service at STRHS Winchester-Sewanee and prior to his start as interim CEO in November, Spray served as CEO of Lincoln County Health System in Fayetteville, Tennessee, where he brought the county-owned health system to its most profitable fiscal year in a decade, increased cardiology coverage, and established a hospitalist program. He went on to serve as CEO of Harton Regional Medical Center, a 135-bed facility in Tullahoma, Tennessee.

“Not only is Russ a dynamic leader with a passion for quality care, he is a devoted champion for and friend of the Winchester community,” said Eric Hartman, chairman of the STRHS board of directors. “We look forward to working with him to explore new ways that STRHS Winchester-Sewanee and the entire STRHS network can enhance the many ways we work to achieve our vital mission of Making Communities Healthier.” 

Spray earned a Master of Business Administration degree, with an emphasis on Healthcare Administration, from Southeastern Institute of Technology in Huntsville, Alabama and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville, Tennessee. He also completed the Health Services Administrator Development Program at the University of Alabama in Birmingham, Alabama.

“I know from experience that STRHS Winchester-Sewanee is a phenomenal hospital, and I am delighted to return to the STRHS family,” said Spray. “I look forward to further strengthening existing relationships and fostering new ones with the incredible physicians and staff here to improve the health of our region. Thank you to everyone in Winchester for welcoming me back home.”

About Southern Tennessee Regional Health System

Part of LifePoint Health, Southern Tennessee Regional Health System (STRHS) is a regional network of hospitals and health care services serving the healthcare needs of communities in the southern Tennessee region with facilities in Winchester, Sewanee, Pulaski, and Lawrenceburg. The system has 382 licensed beds, more than 300 affiliated physicians, 1,250 employees, and serves more than 160,000 people in rural communities in the region.  For more information, visit