David David grew up in an inner Adelaide suburb. After gaining his medical degree (MB BS) in 1966 from the University of Adelaide he continued his studies in England and Europe where he became a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh (FRCS) in 1970 and in 1971 a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, England (FRCS). He became a member of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 1973 (FRACS).
In 1975 he set up the South Australian Craniofacial Unit, which later became the Australian Craniofacial Unit.
In the three decades since then he, with the help of his team of dedicated professionals, has helped restore dignity to thousands of patients. In his hands, complex surgical procedures seem commonplace and he does indeed perform "everyday miracles".
In recognition of his work he received the Companion of the Order of Australia in 1988 and in 1990 South Australia honoured him by naming him the South Australian of the Decade.
As Head of the Australian Craniofacial Unit he encourages and supports the development and provision of patient diagnostic and treatment services that are appropriate to people suffering from craniofacial deformities and injuries.
As President of the Institute of Craniofacial Studies the aim is to promote the Unit's international role, to commission and promote research directed at improved patient outcomes, to develop and implement training and teaching courses worldwide and to manage the Unit's overseas programs. It also encourages and supports associated research and teaching activities and associated health systems development.
In 1999 David David was awarded a Doctor of Medicine degree for his thesis entitled "The Australian Craniofacial Unit - 1975 to 1996".
In 2008 David David was awarded an Honarary Fellowship of The Royal College of Surgeons Thailand for his contribution to the health system in Thailand.