David Streich, ‘84, ‘87
Managing Partner, Carlsbad Human Capital
David Streich '84, '87
Dave Streich is the managing partner for Carlsbad Human Capital, and is currently serving the HR needs of
newly-emerging space technology companies. His areas of expertise include talent acquisition/retention in
highly-competitive marketplaces, HR strategic planning and metrics, and leadership training/coaching. Dave
has led the Human Resource functions for the publicly-traded companies AMCC, SpaceDev Inc., and Alere
Prior to starting Carlsbad Human Capital, Dave was one of the founding executives for SpaceDev Inc., best
known for developing the hybrid propulsion rocket for SpaceShip One (the first private enterprise to put a
human being in space). Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic is using SpaceDev's propulsion technology to
develop a fleet of manned space vehicles, and an ongoing commercial spaceflight business.
What made you choose to attend SDSU?
I did a tour of colleges my senior year high school. At SDSU, I enjoyed the weather and the campus, and I
knew there was a strong Telecommunication and Film department. I knew some smart people who were
already studying at SDSU, and that created an additional comfort level. Although I ended up changing my
major to Communication, I knew that that was also one of the top programs in the country.
What is your favorite college memory?
On academic side, one of my fondest memories comes from grad school. There was a very difficult research
and writing “boot camp” course for the Communication Graduate Program. It involved doing a research
paper every week, and was probably designed to weed out those who could handle the program and those
who couldn’t. I earned an “A” in that very difficult course, and it gave me the confidence I needed to get
through the program and earn my graduate degree.
Who was your favorite professor and/or what was your favorite class?
That’s easy. My favorite class was Argumentation and Debate and my favorite professor was the teacher of
that course, Dr. Paul Gaske. The funny thing is that I took the class by accident. I ran into a friend who
suggested I attend her last class of the day with her, then go to Monty’s together for a beer after that. I
walked into Paul’s class and was intrigued from the start, so I crashed the course. It was very difficult, but the
course had a big impact on my life because it introduced me to intercollegiate debate, and resulted in me
changing my major to Communication. Paul became one my closest friends over the years, and we were
close both professionally and personally, and his inspiration and confidence in me changed my life. But I am
sure that I am not alone, a hundred other students would say the same thing about Paul.
If you were to give current SDSU students some advice, what would you say?
I would advise them to find something to do to represent the University. Whether it is athletics,
intercollegiate debate or something else, do something to represent SDSU. It is both pragmatic to gain
contacts, which will benefit students immensely after school. But it also allows you to better identify with
SDSU, making college a more enriching experience. Have pride in where you went to school and what you
What are you currently reading? What’s your favorite book?
I am currently reading Outliers
by Malcom Gladwell. Gladwell looks at data and phenomena in a different
way, and it enlightens me. One of the interesting things in Outliers
is how random chance plays such a
substantial role in the lives of people who accomplish great things.
What is your passion?
My 17 year old daughter is graduating from high school this year. She has been the most important
responsibility I have ever had. After she goes to college, I want to devote time to mentoring young people. I
also enjoy buying and restoring old classic cars. There are few things I like more.
What is your motto?
My personal motto is “Don’t have a personal motto.” Everything is situational, so a motto that might be
good on one day might not be good on another.
Tell us the highlights of your professional career. What are your proudest achievements?
In my career, I was helped found a company called SpaceDev. In 2004, SpaceDev was part of the first
private enterprise to put a human in outer space. It was an amazing achievement, and something for which I
am proud to this day. Several of the key players at SpaceDev were SDSU alums including Frank Macklin,
who was the chief engineer. I feel very lucky to have been there during that time, and to have witnessed that
event. I have some other accomplishments in my career, but none of them would’ve occurred without the
education I received at SDSU.
If you won the lottery, what would you do with your winnings?
I would give at
least half of it away to charitable causes I support. I am pretty lucky already, and there are more
worthy and needy things of the money than me.