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Hoag to establish Gen. William Lyon Leadership Center after real estate magnate

A picture of Gen. William Lyon and construction helmets.
Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian announced in November that it would be establishing the Gen. William Lyon Leadership Center after receiving an unspecified amount as a gift.
(Courtesy of Kevin Warn)

Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian announced in November that it would be establishing the Gen. William Lyon Leadership Center after receiving a gift from Lyon’s family.

The center will renovate and expand upon the James Irvine Surgical Center at the main entrance of the Newport Beach campus. Demolition began in November, and the project is expected to be completed in 2022. It is expected to include board and conference rooms, executive offices and large open spaces for meetings.

Hospital officials said the center is expected to be a “state of the art” space for collaboration for clinical and hospital leadership.

A portion of the center will also be dedicated for a lounge, fitness room and sleeping areas for physicians to rest during shifts.

Hospital officials did not confirm the total amount of the gift given to Hoag by the family nor did it confirm the total estimated cost of the center Friday, but they did say the family has donated to Hoag for at least 35 years. Lyon, a real estate magnate and former command pilot for the U.S. Air Force, died in 2020.

O.C. Model Engineers, recovering from recent vandalism to their train depot at Costa Mesa’s Fairview Park, were touched Thursday to see an inhumane act remediated by an even bigger act of kindness.

Lyon’s wife, Willa Dean, said that the center will align with what she felt her husband valued. Their son, Bill, agreed, adding that he felt it was important that those in healthcare collaborated to innovate and that the center, hopefully, would provide a space for that to happen.

“He knew the importance of being a leader who looked to the future to improve the lives of others,” Willa Dean Lyon said in a statement. “Hoag physicians are also looking ahead for the next best treatment or procedure to help patients, and my wish is for this space to inspire them as they do that.”

Flynn Andrizzi, president of the Hoag Hospital Foundation, thanked the family for its donation and described William Lyon’s influence on business and the community as “transformative.”

“I had the distinct honor of personally knowing Gen. Lyon as a community leader and homebuilder,” said Daniel Young, who sits on the Hoag Hospital Foundation’s board of directors and is the chair of Hoag’s board of directors, in a statement.

“He was a man of boundless energy, integrity and compassion. He saw a need in our community and gave his all to meet it. He was generous with his time, his money and his incredible connections,” said Young. “To have such a great leader’s name on our leadership center is a fitting tribute to him and an inspiration to all of us at Hoag.”

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