Russ College Academy of Distinguished Graduates
Samuel D. Greiner, '55. With the aid of Sam Greiner, the Ohio University football team won the MAC Championship in 1953. He was drafted by the Bobcats on an athletic scholarship. Greiner, along with fellow engineers Ron Foliano and Tom Lee, played a leading role in the team’s victory. He was a distinguished military graduate and a member of both Tau Beta Pi and Omicron Delta Kappa. In addition, he was president of Theta Chi and served on the Interfraternity Council. During Greiner’s senior year, President Baker invited him to a tea at Cutler Hall where he met his future wife, Dorothy. Greiner says his experience in engineering education, athletics, and extracurricular activities at Ohio University prepared him to be a leader.
After serving two years as a lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers, Greiner was employed with Cooper Industries. One of his many duties with the company was to recruit graduate engineers from Midwest universities. This allowed Greiner the opportunity and privilege to return to Ohio University and to speak to young students about careers in engineering. As a result of his outstanding work as a marketing engineer and recruiter, Greiner would be promoted several times, eventually to the position of division president.
The following year, he combined two machinery divisions in Pennsylvania and formed Cooper Penjax. He calls this merger his most fulfilling and satisfying accomplishment. His new company produced small process and oil field compressors as well as engines and pumps. In four years, Greiner would triple sales and increase profits seven fold. He speaks of this feat as his "little-engine-that-could" period. Prior to Greiner’s leadership, Cooper Penjax’s highest-rated product was a two-cylinder, 230 horsepower, integral engine-compressor. He recalls, "With a touch more of Brake Mean Effective Pressure (BMEP) here, a bit more RPM there, and a larger power cylinder for more displacement, this two-cylinder engine grew to 400 HP, an increase of 75 percent. Thermodynamics, strength of materials, machine design, economics, experience, and a team effort made it happen!"
Greiner served as chair of the Diesel Engine Manufacturer’s Association, was a member of the Compressed Air & Gas Institute, and completed Stanford’s Executive Program. In 1980, he joined the Board of Visitors of the Russ College of Engineering and Technology and remained active until 1996. He was a member of Ohio University’s National Alumni Committee and chair of Project ‘85. Through this fund drive, $4.5 million was raised to provide the latest equipment and technology to the new Stocker Center. In 1986, Greiner received the Medal of Merit from the Alumni Association before becoming active in the Third Century Campaign Committee. He and Dorothy are members of the University’s Trustees Academy.
Greiner’s last ten working years were a period of self-employment as an energy management consultant. The Greiners have two children—their son is an attorney in Hong Kong; their daughter is a hydro-geologist in Maryland.