A descendent of John Alden, one of the original Pilgrims who came to America on the Mayflower, Greenough was born near Boston in 1917. After attending Harvard and the Columbia School of Journalism and fighting in World War II, he worked from 1940 to 1960 at The Plain Dealer, which his family owned until 1967, according to the Times. From 1961-69, he was a financial columnist for The Boston Globe. Thereafter, according to the AP, he looked after his family's affairs as Sills's international career took off.
After Sills retired from the stage in 1980, she began a second career as arts administrator, serving as chairman and/or chief executive of New York City Opera, the Metropolitan Opera and Lincoln Center. She stepped down as the Met's chairman in January 2005 in large part, it was rumored, due to her husband's failing health.