Hugh McLean was born in Scotland. He was a native of London, Ontario.

He was a soccer referee for 25 years and a hockey referee for 29 years.

After the second world war he was a referee in the National Soccer League.

In 1948 he was the referee in the exhibition games in Toronto between Ulster United and Liverpool, and Toronto Greenbacks and Swedish club Djurgarden.

He was a referee in the National Hockey League for ten years.

Hugh was a referee in the Eastern Professional Soccer League in the 1964, 1965 and 1966 seasons.

Hugh passed away at the age of 84 on April 25, 1997 in London, Ontario.