, B.Sc., born in Canada, is a graduate of the University of Toronto with majors in biochemistry & genetics, and computer science. He began his work career conducting six years of diabetes research at the Banting and Best Institute which introduced him to the application of computing in the analysis of protein sequencing. Following this, he pursued a career as an information technology (IT) professional for the next 25 years. His IT career spans from the earliest days of systems engineering on mainframes and super-computers to architecting and designing computing environments for international financial institutions, to ultimately achieving positions as Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for a number of advanced-technology companies including startups. His work provided opportunities to live and work in various countries in Europe and South America during his career. He retired from the IT profession in February 2004, and turned his attention to his long time passion of historical martial arts and focused on the resurrection and reconstruction of historical European martial arts.
His passion in the research of the ancient arts, fired David's desire to pursue the development of a formal medieval martial arts training program and founded the Academy of European Medieval Martial Arts (AEMMA) in 1998, a non-profit corporation dedicated to the resurrection, reconstruction and formalization of medieval martial arts training systems. He is also the Academy's Provost and continues the research and development of training curriculums that include armoured and unarmoured training systems, while furthering the mission of the Academy. More recently, he founded the AEMMA Nova Scotia chapter in 2008. His first opportunity to combine research on Fiore dei Liberi and its physical application to training was in Milan, Italy, in the early 90's employing steel weapons in longsword techniques. He has also participated and contributed to various organizations dedicated to studying the Middle Ages. In addition to his study and practice of historical European mediaeval martial arts for almost two decades, previously, he had also studied and practiced Asian combat arts. This experience was instrumental in understanding the concepts as it was documented in the mediaeval treatises on the subject.
He is a board member (Director) of the Association for Historical Fencing (AHF), and is involved with the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in an advisory/consultant capacity for matters related to the medieval history as it pertains to arms and armour. He also volunteers in and develops a variety of ROM programs oriented towards education of children and adults on the various aspects of the medieval period. He has also earned the Coaching Association of Canada (NCCP) Level 1 theory, a national coaching certification program of the Coaching Association of Canada.
|Royal Ontario Museum||Association for Historical Fencing|
Working with representatives of other martial arts disciplines, David was co-founder in creation of an online journal entitled the "Electronic Journals of Martial Arts and Sciences" (EJMAS), dedicated to promoting scholarship in various martial endeavours. He is the executive editor of the "Journal of Western Martial Art", one of the journals that comprise EJMAS. He is also a member of The Medieval Academy of America, De Re Militari (The Society for Medieval Military History), the Society for the Study of the Crusades and the Latin East, the Society for Slovene Studies and member of the Canadian Slovenian Chamber of Commerce. David was awarded Commander, Royal Order of the Intare (Lion), a dynastic order of the Rwandan Monarchy for his technical contributions towards furthering the mission and objectives of HRH Kigeli V.
David's second passion is the study and practice of the art and science of heraldry. Through his work in historical Western martial arts, he has organized “live” medieval tournaments, pas d'armes and trial by combats in order to recapture the excitement and experience of these medieval events by the inclusion of all things heraldic creating a unique experience for spectators in the 21st century. The Academy also promotes heraldry for their senior students (scholars) so that they may display their achievement while participating in the tournaments as combatants. As a result of this interest, David became a member with the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada (RHSC) in 2003, and took on the role as the Society's webmaster. He had donated his time and expertise to completely re-design their website while encouraging and soliciting input from team members who were members of the Board of the Society. This interest further developed by his petitioning for the honour of a grant of arms, including arms for his two sons with the Canadian Heraldic Authority or CHA. The armorial bearings were later granted and conferred to David at the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada's annual general meeting in October 2004, by the Chief Herald of Canada himself (the arms are depicted above right). David was later nominated and elected as 23rd President of the RHSC in October 2008 and served the Society as its President for six (6) terms. In the following year, he was conferred a fellowship of the Society with the award of Fellow (Hon) of the Society. He is also Past President of the RHSC Toronto Branch. With growing interest in heraldry, activities extended to Slovenian heraldry where he has delivered lectures and presentations on Slovenian heraldry in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and is collaborating with the Narodni muzej Slovenije (National Museum of Slovenia) and the Heraldic Commission furthering the interest and practice of heraldry in Slovenia.
|Electronic Journals of Martial Arts and Sciences||National Coaching Certification|
David is also involved with the Marine Animal Response Society (MARS), a charitable organization dedicated to marine mammal conservation in the Maritimes through rescue, education and research.
David was also involved in the filming of a docu-drama in the fall of 2013 on the Battle of Bannockburn, 1314, both as a medieval advisor and as the role of King Edward I ("Longshanks") in the film. The film aired on History Channel UK in 2014. One of a number of trailers can be viewed here and the docu-drama can be viewed on YouTube.
Other interests and activities include: diving (SCUBA), cycling, chivalric orders, honours, horses and riding, traditional archery, gardening. He and his wife Gail, are also owners/operators of Wine Kitz New Minas, Wine Kitz Digby, Wine Kitz Bridgewater and Wine Kitz Yarmouth stores in Nova Scotia.
- 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal
- 2009 Honorary Fellow of the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada
- 2005 Knight Commander of the Royal Order of the Intare (Lion), Rwanda
- 2004 Grant of Arms, Canadian Heraldic Authority, Ottawa