The BDA was founded on 5 November 2009, by six defecting members of the United Bermuda Party (UBP) - Shawn Crockwell, Donte Hunt, Mark Pettingill, Wayne Scott, Michael Fahy, and Sean Pitcher. It later elected businessman Craig Cannonier as its leader.
The party contested one by-election in December 2010, finishing third behind the Progressive Labour Party (PLP) and the UBP. The PLP retained almost the same level of support that it received in the 2007 general election, while the UBP share of the 2007 vote was split between the UBP and BDA. Concerns of vote-splitting among anti-PLP voters led to negotiations between the BDA and the UBP to merge into a new party, culminating with the formation of the One Bermuda Alliance in 2011.
It described itself as a government that stands for equality of opportunity, social and economic justice, fiscal responsibility, security and safety, environmental sustainability, transparency, honesty and fairness in government. They promote a political philosophy that is rational, liberal and progressive.