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Charles Edward “Mike” Swisher
Class of 2014

Mike Swisher was born in 1945 at Lebanon, Pennsylvania. He was introduced to golf as a caddy at the Fairview Golf & Country Club. At Fairview he worked as a club cleaner for the golf professionals; Harlan Will and Glen Ziegler, who both had an influence on his career and his golf game. Swisher turned pro in 1963 and attained PGA membership in 1966. He began his professional career as an assistant at Fairview working for Ziegler. A year later Ziegler moved to the Coatesville Country Club and Swisher went with him. He moved back to Lebanon in 1965 as the assistant at the Lebanon Country Club for three years. He then worked for Philadelphia Section Hall of Fame member Jay Weitzel at the Hershey Country Club for one year. At Hershey he ran the Hershey Park Course, which was open to the public. A year later the Lebanon C.C. was looking for a head professional and Swisher was hired. When he was hired he told the board of directors that their club would have the best ladies and junior golf programs in the state of Pennsylvania. Swisher spent the next 42 years doing just that. Always a solid player he held the Lebanon C.C. course record with a 63 but he was more interested in developing young golfers. Four of his most successful protégés who won numerous tournaments were Stu Ingraham, Greg Lesher, Blaine Peffley and Jennifer Johnson. He produced so many solid players there was a waiting list of applicants to work for him, even as bag room employees. Swisher founded the Lebanon County Junior Golf Program which grew to the point where there were 250 children receiving golf instruction each year. There was a small charge but the juniors were able to play all of the golf courses in Lebanon County. A “Mike Swisher Scholarship” was established which gave financial aid for college to a young Lebanon County golfer. For more that forty years he was a force behind the Central Counties Chapter of the Philadelphia PGA. Swisher was president from 1982 to 1984 and won its championship in 1973. At Lebanon Country Club he hosted many tournaments for the PGA and was always ready to assist various charities with fund raising. He received many honors. Twice he was the Harrisburg Golf Association “Man of the Year” and he was inducted into the Central Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 1994. He was the Philadelphia Section’s “Junior Golf Leader” in 1999. In 1990 he was the Central Counties PGA “Golf Professional of the Year” and he was the 1985 Philadelphia PGA “Golf Professional of the Year”. In 2014 Swisher was inducted into the Philadelphia Section PGA Hall of Fame.
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