Dr. David A. Bray is an Eisenhower Fellow, Marshall Memorial Fellow, Harvard Executive In-Residence, and Executive Director for the People-Centered Internet initiative. He has worked in hyper-turbulent conditions and directly experienced their exponential impact on technical, social, economic, geopolitical, and security systems globally.
Bray was named one of the top “24 Americans Who Are Changing the World” under 40 by Business Insider in 2016. He was also named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum for 2016-2021. He also accepted a role of Co-Chair for an IEEE Committee focused on Artificial Intelligence, automated systems, and innovative policies globally for 2016-2017 and has been serving as a Visiting Executive In-Residence at Harvard University since 2015. He has also been named a Marshall Memorial Fellow for 2017-2018 and will travel to Europe to discuss Trans-Atlantic issues of common concern including exponential technologies and the global future ahead. Since 2017, he serves as Executive Director for the People-Centered Internet coalition co-founded by Vint Cerf, focused on providing support and expertise for community-focused projects that measurably improve people’s lives using the internet. He also provides strategy and advises start-ups espousing human-centric principles to technology-enabled decision making in complex environments.
Bray enjoys creative problem solving. He began working for the U.S. government at age 15 on computer simulations at a high-energy physics facility investigating quarks and neutrinos. In later roles, he designed new telemedicine interfaces and space-based forest fire forecasting prototypes for the Department of Defense. From 1998-2000 he volunteered as a part-time crew lead with Habitat for Humanity International in the Philippines, Honduras, Romania, and Nepal while also working as a project manager with Yahoo! and a Microsoft partner firm. He then joined as IT Chief for the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Program at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, leading the program’s technology response to during 9/11, anthrax in 2001, Severe Acute Respiratory System in 2003, and other international public health emergencies. He later completed his PhD from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School and two post-doctoral associateships at MIT and Harvard in 2008.
In 2009 Bray volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan to help “think differently” on military and humanitarian issues and in 2010 became a Senior National Intelligence Service Executive advocating for increased information interoperability, cybersecurity, and protection of civil liberties. In 2012, he became the Executive Director for the bipartisan National Commission for Review of Research and Development Programs of the United States Intelligence Community, later receiving the National Intelligence Exceptional Achievement Medal. He received both the Arthur S. Flemming Award and Roger W. Jones Award for Executive Leadership in 2013. He also was chosen to be an Eisenhower Fellow to meet with leaders in Taiwan and Australia on multisector cyber strategies for the “Internet of Everything” in 2015.
Bray passions include “near impossible missions” involving humans and technology in challenging circumstances. This included serving as the non-partisan Chief Information Officer for the Federal Communications Commission from 2013 to 2017. Through the efforts of a team of positive change agents, he led the transformation of the FCC’s legacy IT with more than 207 different systems to award-winning technologies. This included rolling-out new cloud-based IT that achieved results in 1/2 the time at 1/6 the cost. He was selected to be one of the “Fedscoop 50” for Leadership in 2014, 2015, and 2016 and the recipient of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronic Association’s Outstanding Achievement Award for Civilian Government in 2015. Bray also received the global CIO 100 Award in 2015 and 2017, which is usually awarded to private sector Fortune 500 companies, for his transformational leadership in change-adverse settings.