Colonel David H. Dennison is the Director of the DOD Blast Injury Research Coordinating Office (BIRCO) and the medical advisor to the Principal Assistant for Research and Technology, both located at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command, Fort Detrick, Maryland. As BIRCO's Director, Colonel Dennison is responsible for coordinating DOD medical research focused on protecting Service members from blast injuries and providing improved diagnostic tools, treatments, and rehabilitation for those who have been injured by blast.
Colonel Dennison is also the DOD Brain Health Research Coordinator. In this role, he works to promote, support, and coordinate DOD research to yield solutions that improve Service members' brain health in training, in combat, and at home.
Colonel Dennison comes to BIRCO as the former Chief of the Department of Neurology at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC). As the Chief of WRNMMC Neurology, he led the largest Neurology Department in all of DOD, serving as the preeminent tertiary referral center for complex neurologic disorders with diverse specialties to include Neurocritical Care, Traumatic Brain, Epilepsy, Autonomic Nervous System Disorders, Movement Disorders, Neuro-Oncology, and Child Neurology. WRNMMC Neurology also has the largest DOD Neurology Residency as well as the sole Fellowships for Neurophysiology and Child Neurology.
Colonel Dennison was awarded a four-year Army ROTC Scholarship upon his completion of high school in 1992 to attend Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana, where he graduated cum laude with a bachelor of science in Biological Chemistry. Following his undergraduate studies, he matriculated to the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU) in Bethesda, Maryland, culminating in a doctorate of medicine in 2000. After medical school graduation, Colonel Dennison completed a four-year neurology residency at Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington. Following his neurology residency in 2004, Colonel Dennison completed a three-year Pediatric Neurology Fellowship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC. At the conclusion of his Fellowship in 2007, Colonel Dennison was stationed for four years at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany as the sole Child Neurologist with a geographic responsibility to include all of Europe, Africa, and Southwest Asia. He returned to WRNMMC immediately following the BRAC in 2011 as teaching staff and Associate Program Director of the National Capital Consortium (NCC) Child Neurology Fellowship. He was selected as the Program Director of the NCC Child Neurology Fellowship in 2013 until 2018, at which time he was selected as Chief of the Department of Neurology at WRNMMC.
Colonel Dennison's operational medicine experiences include a deployment to Iraq with an infantry battalion in 2009 and as the Theater Neurologist to Afghanistan in 2013. In his 2009 deployment, he played a crucial role as a General Medical Officer in the advise and assist transition mission with the 30th Heavy Brigade Combat Team. In his 2013 deployment, he served as the Theater Neurologist for Task Force Medical Afghanistan where he was integral to developing and maintaining the system of care for traumatic brain injury for all U.S. and NATO forces within the Afghanistan Theater of Operations.
Colonel Dennison holds the academic rank of Assistant Professor of Neurology at USU and has numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals as well as chapters in neurology textbooks. He was awarded the Army Medical Department's "A" proficiency designator for clinical excellence in 2018. He has received numerous military commendations, to include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster, Army Achievement Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal, and the Armed Forces Service Medal. Colonel Dennison was recently recognized as a subject matter expert by the American Academy of Neurology and designated as a Fellow by the largest professional society in the world focused on the science and medicine of neurologic disease and injury. He holds active board certifications by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Neurology, Neurology with Special Qualifications in Child Neurology, and Epilepsy.
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