Edward E. David Jr.

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Edward Emil "Ed" David Jr. (25 January 1925 – 13 February 2017) was an American electrical engineer who served as science advisor to President Richard M. Nixon and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology from 1970 to 1973.

Life and career[edit]

David earned his doctorate in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1947. He took a job with Bell Telephone Laboratories and worked there from 1950 to 1970, eventually becoming Executive Director, Research. Following the resignation of Lee A. DuBridge, David was appointed as Nixon's science advisor.[1] David resigned in 1973, citing "disappointment that his advice had not been heeded."[2] He then took a position as Executive Vice President of R&D and Planning for Gould, Inc. from 1973 to 1977.

He founded consulting group EED, Inc. in 1977, advising industry, government and universities on technology, research and innovation management. In 1977, he became President of Research and Engineering for Exxon Corporation from 1977 to 1986.[3][4] In 1983, he was awarded the IRI Medal from the Industrial Research Institute in recognition for his leadership contributions. He joined The Washington Advisory Group in 1997, serving as Treasurer until 2004. He is currently Director of the Ronson Corporation.

David was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1966. In 1974, he was elected to the MIT Corporation and is a Life Member. He was awarded the The Delmer S. Fahrney Medal in 1985.

David was also active in public service to his adopted state, serving on the board of the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology (NJCST)[5] alongside William O. Baker, his former vice president at Bell Labs. In 1982, while still at Exxon, David was appointed by Governor Thomas H. Kean to the Governor's study commission that led to formation of the NJCST.[6] Once the NJCST became a statutory agency with responsibility for the state's programs in science & technology-based economic development in 1985, David was reappointed to its board and served as chair of its budget committee. During this period, he also chaired the Governor's Roundtable on (High-Temperature) Superconductivity,[7] which was staffed by the NJCST. He left the NJCST board in 1990.[8]

In 2012, David was a co-signatory of a Wall Street Journal op-ed questioning the scientific consensus on global warming.[9]

Born in Wilmington, North Carolina on January 25, 1925, David died at his home in Bedminster, New Jersey on February 13, 2017, aged 92.[10]


  1. ^ Lyons, Richard D. (August 20, 1970). DuBridge Resigns as Nixon's Science Adviser; Computer Expert Named. New York Times
  2. ^ Lyons, Richard D. (January 3, 1973). Science Adviser to Nixon Leaving for Industry Job. New York Times
  3. ^ Specimens from the De. Edward E. David Jr. Collection.
  4. ^ National Academies Press (2006). Science and Technology in the National Interest, page 57. ISBN 978-0-309-09297-5
  5. ^ Historical State of New Jersey webpage on NJCST. Retrieved 3 March 2017
  6. ^ "Report of the Governor's Commission on Science and Technology for the State of New Jersey" Edward Barr, Chairman. December 1983.
  7. ^ "Governor's Roundtable On Superconductivity, Report and recommendations to the Honorable Thomas H. Kean, Governor, State of New Jersey, Dr. Edward E. David Jr., Chairman." May 1, 1989.
  8. ^ "Annual Report of the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology, Covering Fiscal Year Ending July 1, 1990." February 15, 1991.
  9. ^ No Need to Panic About Global Warming January 27, 2012
  10. ^ "Edward E. David Jr., Who Elevated Science Under Nixon, Dies at 92". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 February 2017. 

External links[edit]