b.7 October 1876 d.22 October 1938
CMG CBE MRCS FRCP(1908)
Leonard Dudgeon, son of John Hepburn Dudgeon of Haddington, East Lothian, was educated at University College School in London. He studied medicine at St. Thomas’s Hospital, and, after qualifying in 1899, held junior appointments there and at the Park Fever Hospital, the Hospital for Sick Children, the East London Hospital for Children and the West London Hospital. Having decided to devote his career to pathology, he was made superintendent of the clinical laboratory at St. Thomas’s in 1903 and director of the pathological laboratories and bacteriologist in 1905. He lectured on pathology at St. Thomas’s and the London School of Medicine for Women, and later held a London University chair in the subject. His growing reputation was marked by invitations to deliver the Erasmus Wilson lecture at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1905 and again in 1908, and the Horace Dobell and Croonian Lectures at the Royal College of Physicians in 1908 and 1912 respectively. During the War of 1914-1918 he served as consulting bacteriologist with the rank of colonel, in Salonika and the Eastern Mediterranean; for his services he received the C.M.G. and C.B.E. and the Serbian Order of St. Sava (third class). In 1928 he succeeded Sir Cuthbert Wallace as dean of St. Thomas’s Medical School, and in the next ten years revealed talents as an administrator that rivalled his abilities as a pathologist. Under his supervision, new buildings were erected and others renovated, close co-operation with other schools and with the L.C.C. was established, and the prestige of St. Thomas’s was raised to the highest level. Dudgeon was a painstaking and exacting worker who demanded the highest standard of precision from his subordinates, but his brusque, outspoken manner was largely a pose. Golf was his favourite recreation. He married Norah, daughter of Richard Orpen of Kenmare, County Kerry, and had a daughter and two sons.
G H Brown
[Lancet, 1938; B.M.J., 1938; St. Thomas's Hospital Gazette, 1937-38, xxxvi, 545]
(Volume IV, page 489)
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