David Brennan, M.B.A. ’01

David Brennan, left, with James Loney, starting first baseman for the LA Dodgers, at the Dodgers Dream Foundation Bowling Extravaganza.

David Brennan, left, with James Loney, starting first baseman for the LA Dodgers, at the Dodgers Dream Foundation Bowling Extravaganza.

Fundraising for the Dodgers Dream Foundation

Like many American boys, David Brennan collected baseball cards when he was growing up in Portland, Conn. How many students would use that as inspiration for a senior thesis, which Brennan did at Bates College, where he graduated in 1996?

He wrote about “racial stacking” in baseball from the 1950s through the 1980s, where white players were given opportunities to play any position, particularly catcher and pitcher (decision making positions), but blacks were confined to outfield positions (athletic positions).

In 2005 Brennan won a front office with the Los Angeles Dodgers in a serendipitous union of his baseball interest and his skills in fundraising and community relations. He developed those skills at URI working at the affiliated Institute for International Sport, a non-profit that promotes athletic and academic achievement along with international understanding among youths.

Now director of fundraising for the Dodgers Dream Foundation, Brennan works closely with current and former players and Dodger legends like former manager Tommy Lasorda to build community programs through the foundation. Founded in 1998, the foundation provides educational, athletic, and recreational opportunities for the youth of greater Los Angeles, placing special emphasis on underserved children.

“It helped that I had experience in community affairs, which I started developing when I was at the Institute working with Dan Doyle,” Brennan said recently from his Dodger Stadium office in Los Angeles. “That helped me get the first job that landed me in LA as community affairs coordinator for the Los Angeles Clippers.”

While working at the Institute, Brennan also earned an M.B.A. at URI’s College of Business Administration. “That has helped me a great deal in my career,” he said. “It definitely helped me get where I am now.”

“I have fond memories of my time in Kingston,” Brennan added. “I met a lot of great people at URI. I miss New England, but a few years of no snow shoveling or ice scraping has helped me adjust to LA.”

—John Pantalone ’71