Born in Glasgow (Scotland) on July 30, 1878, MacLean emigrated with his family to Ontario in 1887 and graduated in medicine at the University of Toronto in 1906. He practised in Lang, Saskatchewan, then trained in surgery in Chicago and New York in 1912–13 before returning to Regina. He was unsuccessful in the Regina federal constituency for the Progressives in 1921 and for the CCF in 1935. He retired to California because of ill health in 1938, but remained an “eminence grise” to the CCF party. His speech on “Medical Health Service” to the CCF provincial convention in Regina on July 13, 1944, was a precursor to the Sigerist report; MacLean supported Sigerist’s appointment. He was later described by T.C. Douglas as the “spiritual godfather” of both the University of Saskatchewan Medical School and the University Hospital. MacLean died in La Jolla, California on January 1, 1958.
C. Stuart Houston