David joined the Parliament at devolution in 1999. Since then he has performed a variety of roles including clerking parliamentary committees and Principal Private Secretary to the Presiding Officer. Most recently, he served as Assistant Chief Executive, working directly with political parties and advising the Presiding Officer on procedural and parliamentary matters.
David was appointed Clerk and Chief Executive in October 2019. He is responsible for providing the Parliament with the property, staff and services required to carry out its purposes and acts as the Principal Adviser to the Presiding Officer and Deputy Presiding Officers in the management of Parliamentary business. As Principal Accountable Officer, David is responsible for the financial management of the organisation. He chairs meetings of the Leadership Group and attends meetings of the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body and the Parliamentary Bureau in an advisory capacity. In addition, David has lead responsibility for the Parliament’s response to constitutional issues.
David graduated with an Honours degree in Politics from Glasgow College (now Glasgow Caledonian University) in 1989. Before joining the Parliament in 1999, he was a civil servant working firstly at Registers of Scotland as an Executive Officer and then as Deputy Clerk to the Lands Tribunal for Scotland.