Born in Foam Lake, Saskatchewan on March 29, 1930, Roy Marshall Lev attended Luxton School and St. John's High School in Winnipeg’s North End before attending the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Manitoba, from which he graduated in 1953. While at the University of Manitoba he was Editor,Brown and Gold, 1951-52 and Editor, Perspective magazine.
Following his architectural training, Lev enjoyed a a successful practice for two decades, before joining the Lakeview Properties development corporation as a partner. At the University, Lev’s thesis model was of a future home for the Winnipeg Free Press newspaper, as well as a design for the studios of local broadcaster CKRC. Amongst the building’s which Lev created during his architectural work of the fifties and sixties is the original section of the Viscount Gort hotel, at Portage Avenue and Madison Street, of 1960. This scheme featured a modernist design of modular boxes staggered into the triangular site; the projects developer was also that of Lev’s earlier Falcon Lake motel project. Lev was also responsible for the conversion of the Roxy Theatre on Henderson Highway from a theatre into a bowling alley.
One of Lev’s largest proposed projects was 831 Portage Avenue; the project as built is a four-storey office block in a late modernist vein. However, this section was originally designed to be the first phase of three part construction project which also included a 19-storey hotel to be known as the Broadway Inn.
Lev later established Jegray Development, a corporation responsible for numerous apartment and commercial properties throughout the city. Lev was also engaged in numerous community roles. Lev was President of the Riverside Lions Club of St. Vital, Norwood and St. Boniface during the early 1960s. During the 1980s, Lev served as Director of the Winnipeg Blue Bomber Football Club. From 1988 to 1990, Lev was the President of the Board of Directors for the Seven Oaks General Hospital Foundation. During this time, Roy was furthermore amongst the Directors of crown corporation Ports Canada.