David Townsend is the Aspen Institute's Senior Advisor on Seminars and Director of Wye Programs. He is responsible for their Wye-based programs and for management of the Institute's long-term partnership with the Federal Executive Institute (FEI) in Charlottesville, Virginia. He also serves as a moderator for the Institute, which includes being a member of the visiting faculty of FEI.
David has been a tutor at St. John's College since 1974, teaching graduate and undergraduate courses in topics including Chaos and Fractal Theory, Relativity Theory, Non-Euclidean Geometry, Political Philosophy, Philosophy of History, Plato, Aristotle, Homer, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Virgil, The Bible, Dante, Shakespeare, Descartes, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Jefferson, Kant, Adam Smith, Hegel, Marx, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Freud, Contemporary Legal Studies, Greek, and French Literature.
David coordinated the Corporate Council on Africa's AIDS Task Force and is currently a member of the Baltimore City Commission on HIV/AIDS. He also teaches at a maximum security prison, at the Baltimore Police Academy, and served as Senior Director of Projects for Touchstones Corporation, which provides unique learning experiences for students in public and private schools throughout the United States, and with programs in China, Jordan, Tanzania, and Haiti.
A 1969 graduate of Loyola College, David is a member of the Jesuit Honor Society and is interested in spiritual questions. He is a Master Mason. He has a Ph.D. from Harvard, a J.D. from Yale, and a degree from the University of Paris.