“Dr. Dave” was born and raised in and around South Bend, Indiana. He graduated from North Liberty High School before attending Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. Dave received his BS in Biology, specializing in Plant Ecology and Botany. He subsequently enrolled at Michigan State University to work on a Master of Science degree in Viticulture with Dr. Stan Howell in the Horticulture Department. Dave’s MS work focused on the influence of rootstock on grapevine cold hardiness. After receiving his MS, Dave accepted a job as research manager in the Viticulture and Enology program under Dr. Howell at MSU. There, he designed and ran the grape research plots, produced the research wines and directed the vine physiology and enology lab. He worked as the research manager for 13 years, the last four of which were also spent working on his PhD. Dave’s PhD work focused on grapevine photosynthesis, carbon partitioning in grapevines and, grapevine and vineyard productivity. During his time at MSU Dave authored or co-authored over 35 scientific publications, most of them in refereed journals. He has presented his work at professional meetings throughout North America. After receving his PhD Dave accepted a position at St. Julian Wine Company as Associate Winemaker. He was promoted to Winemaker then Vice President of Winemaking. Dave's work at St. Julian involved working with growers to improve the vineyards and raw product - grapes in addition to improving processing and the overall quality of wines. Wine sales more than doubled during Dave's tenure at St. Julian.
While at St. Julian Dave served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at MSU in the Horticulture Department where he lectured and served on graduate student guidance committees. Starting in fall 2010 Dave has an appointment as a Visiting Professor at MSU where he will teach a course in Winemaking and work with other scientists to conduct research into some issues facing the Michigan's wine industry. Dave has served on the Michigan Grape and Wine Industry Council and is presently a member of the wine council's Research and Education Advisory Committee, the Viticulture Consortium East Advisory Committee, the Viticulture and Enology Science and Technology Alliance and the National Grape and Wine Initiative. He is committed to producing the very best grapes and wines Michigan has to offer.