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David Tennenhouse is currently a senior advisor in the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) newly created Directorate for Technology, Innovation, and Partnerships (TIP). Dr. Tennenhouse has a track record of driving innovation in multiple domains. He worked in academia as a faculty member at MIT; in government at DARPA and the NSF; in industry at Intel, Amazon, Microsoft, and VMware; and as a partner in a venture capital firm.
As a senior advisor within the NSF’s TIP Directorate, Dr. Tennenhouse focuses on enhancing US competitiveness through the acceleration of use-inspired, translational research and development. Before joining the NSF, Dr. Tennenhouse was the chief research officer at VMware, where he led activities to enhance and extend VMware’s technology leadership. These included the formation of VMware’s in-house research group; the incubation of new products, capabilities, and businesses; engagements with university researchers; and public-private partnerships. He and his team also worked with government customers to help them envision paths through which new technologies could radically improve their mission-related outcomes.
Dr. Tennenhouse joined VMware from Microsoft, where he was a corporate vice president and led their Technology Policy Group. He was previously a partner at New Venture Partners, where he focused on the creation of spinouts from corporate R&D teams. Prior to working in venture capital, he was Vice President of Platform Strategy at Amazon and CEO of its A9.com subsidiary, where he led Amazon’s work on search and advertising. Earlier in his career in industry, Dr. Tennenhouse was vice president and director of research at Intel Corporation, where he pioneered an "open collaborative" approach to corporate research. That approach was, in part, inspired by Dr. Tennenhouse’s public sector work as DARPA's chief scientist and director of its Information Technology Office, where his team initiated programs to provide the technical foundation for the DoD’s shift to network-centric warfare.
At DARPA and in the private sector, Dr. Tennenhouse has been involved in the strategic planning and execution of programs related to a wide range of technologies, including distributed/cloud computing, networking, computer architecture, storage, wireless communications, machine learning, search/data mining, image processing, robotics, microelectromechanical systems, healthcare, and nano/bio-technology. As a faculty member at MIT, he led pioneering research on high-speed networking, software-based video processing, software-defined networks, software radio, and telecommunications policy.
Dr. Tennenhouse holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Toronto and obtained his PhD at the University of Cambridge. He is a fellow at the IEEE and a fellow at the Canadian Academy of Engineering, and he has been a member of numerous government, university, and industry advisory boards.