Born in Winnipeg, Robert Ross received his Arts and Science degree from the University of Manitoba in 1943, and his M.D. degree in 1948 from the Faculty of Medicine. He pursued his medical and hospital training at the Winnipeg General Hospital and at the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases in London, England.
Currently Professor Emeritus of Medicine at the University, Dr. Ross has had a long and illustrious career as a physician and educator. A renowned neurologist, he has exemplified an outstanding career in Medicine, and has followed a course of philanthropy within the University of Manitoba and the broader community throughout his life.
Dr. Ross was a faculty member at the University from 1953-1999, a member of the Department of Neurology and served as Head of Neurology from 1977-1984. During his tenure as Head, he introduced many innovations and was responsible for developing and directing the graduate training program in neurology. An excellent teacher, his former residents noted the way he encouraged them to become good physicians.
Dr. Ross has published extensively and authored over fifty papers and articles. His book, How to Examine the Nervous System, a neurology textbook is on the recommended list of textbooks in medical schools. First published in 1973, the third edition of this textbook was published in 1999 and is very popular with medical students and residents. He founded the Canadian Journal of Neurological Sciences, the primary vehicle for dissemination of neurological research in Canada in 1974, and served as its editor and publisher from 1974 to 1981.
Throughout his life, Dr. Ross has been a strong supporter of the education and the arts. He established the Dr. R.T. Ross Medical Library Trust Fund and has contributed to it over a period spanning two decades, thus ensuring that funds were available to support teaching and research needs specific to students, researchers and teachers in the Faculty of Medicine. Reflective of his particular interest in technology, he donated funds to the Medical Library in the mid-eighties that allowed the creation of a computer laboratory used to teach medical intormatics to students. He has continued his support in the Neil John Maclean Health Sciences Library by once again providing funds for the computer equipment in the Ross Learning Resource Centre. The Faculty of Law has also benefited from Dr. Ross's broad interests by the establishment of the John L. Ross Q.C. Bursary for law students competing in national moot trial competitions.
Dr. Ross has an outstanding record of community service and has been a supporter of the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, National Gallery of Art and the Winnipeg Library Foundation.
Dr. Ross has received numerous awards for his scholarly and community work including the E.L Drewry Research Prize in Physiology, Canadian Centennial Medal, Queen Elizabeth Jubilee Medal and an honorary Life Membership in the Canadian Neurological Society. Dr. Ross was appointed to the Order of Canada in 1993.