David is a true native of Port Talbot and continues to live in the constituency. He is married to Marie, a retired superintendent radiographer at Neath Port Talbot hospital, and they have two adult daughters both of whom were educated at local Welsh medium schools.
David was educated at local infant, junior and comprehensive schools before moving on to Cardiff University where he gained an honours degree in Engineering and a post graduate teaching qualification. Upon completing his studies at University he bought a house in his home town and began a successful career in Education. He first worked as a teacher at Cynffig Comprehensive School in Kenfig Hill, then becoming a lecturer at Afan College before moving into Higher Education. Prior to becoming MS for Aberavon he was an Assistant Dean of Faculty at Swansea Metropolitan University. During this time working in Higher Education he gained a further post graduate qualification, MSc.
avid joined the local Labour Party in 1982 and has been an active member ever since. he believes in the values that the party represents and the important role it can play inn creating a fairer and stronger Wales. David has held several positions within the Labour Party and was the Constituency Labour Party secretary for Aberavon between 2005 and 2011, standing down to concentrate on the 2011 National Assembly election. He is a member of Unite and Unison, having always believed in the importance in being member of a trade union and having that collective support it offers. Throughout his working life he has been a strong advocate for good working relationships between the trade unions & government and regularly raises trade union issues in the Senedd.
Following his elections to the Senedd in 2011 and 2016, David gained the respect of his colleagues and was elected as a committee chair during both Senedd terms. In the Fourth Senedd, David chaired the Health & Social Care committee and steered several pieces of legislation through the early stages of those bills. He also temporarily chaired the Children, Young People and Education committee having previously sat on the Environment committee. In the fifth Senedd, David chaired the External Affairs & Additional Legislation Committee, which considered the impact upon Wales of the UK’s decision to leave the EU. He also sat on the Health, Social Care and Sport committee, which scrutinises government legislation and produces topical reports based on committee inquiries into health care, the committee for the Scrutiny of the First Minister and on the Finance committee.
David also chaired Cross Party Groups within the Senedd on Steel, STEMM, Cancer, Nurses & Midwifery, and Mental Health. He is also a member of several other CPGs. David continues to be actively involved in campaigns to establish a sustainable, green steel industry in Wales, to improve cancer services in our NHS, and for greater recognition of the work of our fabulous NHS staff. At the same time David also strongly advocates the position Science and Technology can play in economic policy, particularly as we come out of the coronavirus pandemic period.
His other interests include Economic regeneration, child poverty, youth engagement, public services and education.