The Honorable Dennis B. Leiber was the second child born to Dr. and Mrs. Beryl H. Leiber on February 21, 1947, in Chicago, Illinois. He was baptized at Our Lady of Lourdes Church and attended parochial school there from kindergarten through the second grade.
In June, 1955, he, his parents, and sister moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, where the family was enrolled at the Cathedral of St. Andrew and he attended St. Andrew School, graduating from the eighth grade in 1961. Judge Leiber graduated from Grand Rapids Catholic Central High School in 1965. During this time the family moved, necessitating transfer to St. Alphonsus Parish, where his parents were members until their deaths and where he was a member from 1963 until approximately 1983 when he returned to the Cathedral of St. Andrew.
Judge Leiber attended Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He graduated in 1969 with a double major in political science and history. During the college years he was employed as a radio announcer for WXTO-FM, which at the time was the first and only diocesan owned and operated radio station in the United States.
Upon graduation, he enrolled at Wayne State University Law School from which he was awarded the degree of Juris Doctor in 1972. His post-degree work experience includes Grand Rapids, Michigan, Assistant City Attorney 1973-1975; sole practitioner 1975-1977; Assistant Kent County (Grand Rapids) Prosecutor 1977-1988. In 1988, Judge Leiber was elected to the 17th Judicial Circuit Court and was re-elected unopposed to the same position in 1994, 2000, and 2006.
Over the years, Judge Leiber’s community commitment included service on the Board of Directors of the Grand Rapids Museum Association; the Aquinas College Credit Union; member and past-president of the Aquinas College Alumni Association; Grand Rapids Circle Theatre; The Grand Rapids Center for Independent Living, and the Hugh Michael Beahan Foundation.
Judge Leiber is a life member of the National Eagle Scout Association and in 1978, he was awarded the “Citizens Recognition Award” by the Grand Rapids Police Department for “his willingness to get involved in community problems, but more notably, neighborhood problems”. In 1985 and 1986 he was the recipient of the Top Ten Volunteer Award bestowed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving in Kent County and in 1996, the highest honor which can be given to a volunteer the Silver Beaver Award, was granted to him by the Gerald R. Ford Council of the Boy Scouts of America.
Currently he serves on the Board of Directors of the Public Museum Collections Committee, the Dispute Resolution Center, the Alliance for Health, and the Gerald R. Ford Council of the Boy Scouts of America.
Professionally, Judge Leiber was Chief of Legal Instruction to the Grand Valley State University Policy Academy and Adjunct Professor of Law from 1985 to 1987; Instructor of Business Law, Aquinas College, 1986, and Instructor, Grand Rapids Junior College Police Academy, 1986. He attended the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada, in 1990 and completed their General Jurisdiction course and served as their faculty advisor in July, 1995. Currently, he has been called upon to serve as an instructor to various law enforcement agencies as well as judges through the Michigan Judicial Institute and as a faculty member of the National Judicial College.
For almost forty years Judge Leiber has served as a lector both at St. Alphonsus Church and presently at the Cathedral of St. Andrew. For the last thirty years he has been an active member of Serra International, serving in a variety of offices with the Serra Club of Grand Rapids, Michigan, including Club President from 1984-1986. During 1991 and 1992 he accepted the call to service as District Governor of District 15, comprising the lower peninsula of Michigan. Most recently, he was elected and served as International President of the global lay apostolate from 2005 to 2006.
In April, 1995, Judge Leiber was honored to become a member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. Over the past ten years, Judge Leiber has acknowledged his duty and responsibility as a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre to attend the annual meeting of the Order to renew his promises to the Order given at his investiture and has been absent only on rare occasions. He has paid his annual dues without fail and has contributed to Holy Land projects to the best of his ability. He has attempted to assist the state representative in new member initiative, subject to the desire of the Ordinary of his diocese. Most recently, he participated on behalf of the Order in the installation of the Most Rev. Walter A. Hurley, KC * HS as Bishop of Grand Rapids on August 4, 2005, at the Cathedral of St. Andrew.
Of all his accomplishments, Judge Leiber is proudest of his marriage on May 16, 1987, to the former Margaret J. Crookston. He and his wife are parents of a daughter, Catherine, born September 3, 1988, who is a graduate of John Carroll University.
Judge Dennis Leiber is the recipient of the Diocesan Bronze Pelican for his contributions to the development of Catholic youth.