David Schindel

Interagency Working Group on Scientific Collections

Dr. Schindel was trained as an invertebrate paleontologist and evolutionary biologist, receiving his undergraduate degree in geology from the University of Michigan in 1973 and his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1979.  He was a faculty member in Yale University’s Department of Geology & Geophysics and was Curator of Invertebrate Fossils in the Yale Peabody Museum from 1978 to 1986.  From 1986 to 2004 he held a variety of management positions at the National Science Foundation, directing programs in biological research, support for natural history museums, elementary school science education, major research facilities and program evaluation.  In 1997 he was a Brookings Institution LEGIS Fellow on the personal staff of U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), working on the use of technology in education. From 1998 to 2004, he served as NSF’s representative to Europe, based in the US Embassy in Paris.  In September 2004 Dr. Schindel was invited by the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History to lead several international research initiatives: the Consortium for the Barcode of Life, the Barcode of Wildlife Project (supported by a $3 million Google Global Impact Award) and Scientific Collections International.

Dr. Schindel retired in January 2017 but he remains an active participant in the Interagency Working Group on Scientific Collections.  He lives in Bethesda, MD with Kate Becker, his wife of 40 years.  Their two daughters and three granddaughters live in Georgetown and Fairfax, VA