Christopher J.W.B. Leggett, MD
Interventional Cardiologist and Entrepreneur
Dr. Christopher JWB Leggett is a clinical academic interventional cardiologist. He received his board certifications in internal medicine, general cardiology and interventional cardiology through the American Board of Internal Medicine. He presents to us with a lifetime of stellar achievement. At thirteen years of age, he was awarded a three year academic scholarship by the "A Better Chance" organization to attend Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. After graduation, he received a four year academic scholarship to attend Princeton University. He graduated as a pre-medical student with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology in 1982. He was a campus leader in many organizations and a member of the Princeton University basketball team.
His education continued at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine where he received his Doctorate of Medicine in 1986. He completed his internal medicine internship and residency at the world renowned Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He then completed his cardiology fellowship at Emory University School of Medicine. Immediately following his fellowship he remained on faculty at Emory as an attending physician in the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at the Veterans Administration Hospital of Atlanta. Dr. Leggett was then offered a prestigious interventional cardiology fellowship at the University of Alabama at Birmingham under the tutelage of world leader and pioneer of cardiac stent technology, Dr. Gary Roubin. He was subsequently expertly trained in all aspects of coronary and peripheral endovascular interventions and technology.
Dr. Leggett has had the privilege of treating thousands of patients in the Atlanta metropolitan area and throughout the United States. He is a scholar who has authored book chapters, numerous scientific publications, participated regularly as a clinical investigator in national and international clinical research trials and collaborated in the development of innovative cardiovascular and neurologic lifesaving endovascular technologies. In addition to clinical patient care, Dr. Leggett has an extensive, thoughtful and careful history of evaluating and providing primary venture capital investment funding for fundamentally sound, promising biomedical and medical technology startup companies.
Despite managing a demanding patient schedule along with the rigors of evaluating biomedical and technology investment opportunities, Dr. Leggett has remained involved locally and nationally on the boards of numerous medical societies, civic groups and private healthcare foundations. Many of these board positions have allowed him to maintain a distinct focus on the elimination of healthcare barriers that often create disparities and limit access to quality care for rural, minority and underserved populations in America. He was principal investigator of the Cardiovascular Learning Partnership, a national community based initiative, funded by the Guidant Foundation, aimed at educating, increasing awareness and improving access to quality care for African American diabetics with cardiovascular disease. He is a founding board member of the "Close the Gap" campaign. This nationwide initiative, funded by Boston Scientific Corporation, primary goal is to decrease sudden cardiac death in women and underserved populations through improved patient survival via increased access to new, appropriate, emerging lifesaving cardiovascular technologies.
Most recently from 2010-2013 Dr. Leggett was intensely immersed in the task of improving and bringing top quality cardiovascular care to patients in rural America. In 2010 East Georgia Regional Medical Center recruited Dr. Leggett to become program Director of Interventional Cardiology. Prior to his arrival there was no existing program, trained personnel, operating suite or interventional cardiac technology in place to treat patients suffering from an acute myocardial infarction/heart attack. On the strength of Dr. Leggett’s outstanding reputation and agreement to serve as the new incoming program Director East Georgia Regional Medical Center applied for and received the State of Georgia's Certificate of Need (CON) approval to establish the first interventional cardiology program and service line in rural South Georgia. Over his 3 year term as Director Dr. Leggett built this program at East Georgia Regional Medical Center (EGRMC), in Statesboro, Georgia, from the ground up. He chose all the latest cardiac catheterization imaging equipment, coronary ultrasound and flow wire technology, catheters, wires, coronary balloons, coronary stent platforms and trained all the staff in the catheterization lab and coronary intensive care unit on how to care for patients during and after a routine or emergent coronary intervention. He raised expectations and consistently demonstrated that sustained clinical cardiovascular excellence under carefully developed circumstances with proper oversight can be transported from major large city academic centers to rural settings with excellent patient outcomes. This first class program succeeded not only in delivering superb care and bringing lifesaving cardiovascular technology to rural South Georgia but also and most importantly in saving countless lives. When established in January of 2010, East Georgia Regional Medical Center was the only cardiovascular program between Macon and Savannah, on interstate 16, where patients suffering from chest pain, progressive unstable angina or an acute heart attack could go to receive emergent lifesaving care with a cardiac stent procedure. During his 3 year tenure, Dr. Leggett personally successfully performed over 1500 cardiac catheterization, elective and emergent coronary stent procedures, in rural South Georgia, without a single complication or death.
Dr. Leggett was appointed by the Bush Administration/United States Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to serve on the National Practicing Physician Advisory Council in Washington, D.C. for a four year term that was completed in 2006. He was a member of the National Institute of Health-Expert Panel to Eliminate Disparities in Cardiovascular Care and Outcomes: Roadmap to 2010. He was a member of the Center for Disease Control Board of Visitors. He is a member of the Johns Hopkins Medical and Surgical Society, American Heart Association (AHA), Vice President of Association of Black Cardiologist, National Coalition for the Advancement of Cardiovascular Health, National Vascular Biology Working Group Faculty and
Fellow of the American College of Cardiology. He was a prior member of the Board of Directors of Saint Joseph's Cardiovascular Research Institute. He also served as President of the Southeastern Affiliate of the American Heart Association, member of the AHA National Professional Education Committee and National Board of Directors of the American Heart Association.
Dr. Leggett is a talented, dedicated and caring physician. He has been consistently recognized as one of America's leading physicians in the field of interventional cardiology. In 2000 and 2008 he was recognized by Black Enterprise magazine as one of America's Top Cardiologist. In 2006 he was listed in Who's Who in Atlanta. In 2007 he was the American Heart Association's Physician of the Year Honoree for the prestigious Atlanta Heart Ball. He was the youngest honoree and first African American physician ever so honored. The 2007 Heart Ball fundraiser raised nearly 1.5 million dollars making it the highest grossing event in the Heart Ball’s 37 year history. The American Heart Association utilized event proceeds to fund the developmental careers of young physician scientist as well as research grants for important lifesaving basic science and clinical cardiovascular research. In 2007 he received the Dream Builder's Award from Atlanta Metropolitan College for community service in education. In 2009 he was recognized as Father of the Year by the American Diabetes Association. This award acknowledged community leadership, career excellence and a dedication to family and fatherhood. In 2010 and 2012 he was the cover article for Statesboro Magazine: "The Heart of the Matter, Interventional Cardiology." In 2010 he was recognized by Black Enterprise Magazine with the "Intelligent Performers Honor". In 2012 he was selected to Atlanta Business League Men of Influence and The Heritage Registry of Who's Who in America for work in Interventional Cardiology. In 2012 he also received the Ford Motor Company, Ford Freedom Unsung Heroes Award for community service from the National Center for Civil & Human Rights. In 2014 he featured in Cover Article of Who's Who in Black Atlanta.
A native of Cleveland, Ohio Dr. Leggett was born the tenth of eleven children to Willie and Ethel Leggett. He readily acknowledges, however that his most valued and cherished honor has been having the privilege of sharing his life in marriage with his wife of 30 years, attorney Denise Cleveland Leggett. Her spiritual foundation is unflappable. Her moral fabric and self-sacrifice provides the unshakable footing upon which he stands daily. He is the proud father of Alexandria Nichol and Christopher James II.
Dr. Christopher JWB Leggett gives all the praise and glory to God who empowers and fortifies him daily. "Character is power. The silent witness of a true, unselfish Godly life carries an almost irresistible influence." E.G. White