Dr. John Douglas Leigh was born on the 22nd of August, 1955 in Windsor, Ontario. His parents were Cecil and Doreen (Skinner) Leigh. Dr. Leigh has an older brother William who has a PhD in Chemistry and is a professor at McMaster University. His younger sister Mary has retired from a career at Union Gas in Chatham and his younger brother Robert has a PhD in Theoretical Physics and is a professor at the University of Illinois.
Dr. Leigh’s family moved from Windsor to Toronto when he was 3 years old. He started school at Inglewood Heights Public School in Agincourt and moved to Chatham after completing grade 2 in 1962. Dr. Leigh attended Queen Elizabeth Public School from grade 3 to grade 8, with a short stint at Sprucedale Public School for grades 5 and 6. Dr. Leigh attended John McGregor Secondary School and graduated from grade 13 in 1973.
Dr. Leigh was accepted at the University of Western Ontario, in London and spent 2 years in a Chemistry program, before starting Medical School in 1975. He graduated M.D. in June of 1979. Dr. Leigh spent 1 year in a rotating internship at St. Joseph’s Hospital in London.
After completing his internship, Dr. Leigh opened his family practice at 44 Third Street in Chatham. (At the same location, in 1980 was Dr. McKay and Dr. MacWilliam.)
Dr. Leigh married Linda Sample on the 9th of May, 1975 at St. Andrew’s Church in Chatham. Mrs. Leigh is the daughter of Grant and Mavis (McGregor) and she grew up in Blenheim, Ontario. She is the youngest of 3 children. Mrs. Leigh has a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts. Before Dr. and Mrs. Leigh started their family Mrs. Leigh was a Recreational Therapist at the Public General Hospital in Chatham. Dr. and Mrs. Leigh have 4 children, Ben, Joel, Katherine and Josh. Mrs. Leigh is an accomplished artist in a variety of mediums and has her own pottery studio. Dr. and Mrs. Leigh have always lead and participated in activities to promote youth leadership. For over 40 years Dr. and Mrs. Leigh and their children have participated in Youth Leadership programs under the auspices of the United Church of Canada, St. Paul’s Congregational Church, Chatham and more recently, Adullam Camp Ministries.
Dr. Leigh built an office located at 197 St. Clair Street in Chatham and moved there in 1984. Mrs. Leigh works part-time in the office. Dr. Leigh has held a number of positions within the Chatham Kent Health Community including Chief of Family Practice at Public General Hospital and he was the first joint Director of Emergency Services when the Public General Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Sydenham District Hospital joined to become the Chatham Kent Health Alliance (CKHA) in 2004. Dr. Leigh was a member of the building committee when the Chatham Kent Health Alliance constructed the St Joseph’s campus on Grand Ave. He held the positions of Vice President and President of the Medical Staff during the lead up to and after the amalgamation of the CKHA. Dr. Leigh was Chief of Psychiatry for 7 years.
Dr. Leigh has enjoyed playing hockey since he was a child in Toronto. He has recently hung up his skates and goalie pads, but has picked up a number of gigs playing a variety of musical instruments in Community bands. In particular he has played in the Chatham Concert Band since 2000. And since the word has got out that he has musical talent he has been tapped to play in pit orchestras’ for Theater Kent and for various musical productions at Chatham Kent Secondary School. He is also a member of a Jazz band called Primitive Roots and a classic rock band, Niteflite.
Dr. and Mrs. Leigh are busy grandparents and enjoy spending time with their family.