Dave Brennan

Head, Data Management Division
David Brennan

As the head of the data management division, Mr. Dave Brennan is responsible for its strategic direction and ongoing operations. He leads a team of more than 100 employees that receives, processes, calibrates, and distributes data downloaded from space telescopes. His team also archives data in the Barbara A. Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) and provides tools for the astronomical community to analyze astronomical data. These services are instrumental in making the world’s astronomical information accessible to all while advancing the state-of-art of astronomical data, archives, and tools for scientific discovery.

Prior to joining the institute, Mr. Brennan spent more than 15 years at Thales Defense and Security in Clarksburg, Maryland, most recently as director of engineering. In this role, he led teams of software engineers, introduced agile tools and techniques, coached and recruited employees, and saw an overall decrease in development time through improved project management, continuous integration, testing, and collaboration. During this period, he and his team developed a helmet-mounted cueing system, which allowed Thales to expand beyond military fixed wing aircraft into the rotary wing and commercial aircraft markets.

Earlier in his tenure at Thales, he served as a director of software engineering, with a 130-person team, where he oversaw the development of satellite terminal software, inflight entertainment, satellite-to-satellite software, naval integrated command management systems, and multi-platform software for military radios. Prior to Thales, Mr. Brennan was the director of strategic technology and the director of software engineering at Brooks Automation in Chelmsford, Massachusetts, a robotics company that specializes in automation, vacuum, and instrumentation solutions for semiconductor manufacturing and other industries.

He received certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute, and was trained as a ScrumMaster by the Scrum Alliance and as an Agile Team Facilitator by the International Consortium for Agile.


MBA, Northeastern University
BS in Electrical Engineering/Computer Engineering, Northeastern University