Dr David Doolette began scuba diving in 1979 and was introduced to the sinkholes and caves of Australia in 1984. Around this time he alternated between studying for his B.Sc. (Hons.) and working as a dive instructor when he developed an interest in diving physiology.

He planned and conducted among the first technical dives in Australia in 1993. Since being awarded his Ph.D. in 1995, he has conducted full time research into decompression physiology, first at the University of Adelaide, and since 2005 at the U.S. Navy Experimental Diving Unit.

He has published widely in the scientific and military technical literature, and produces military decompression procedures. He has lectured widely on topics related to decompression theory and technical diving. He has been a member of the Undersea Hyperbaric Medical Society since 1987, received their 2003 Oceaneering International Award, and is a member of their Diving Committee.

He has been a member of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine since 1990 where he was the Education Officer for five years. He is a member of the Cave Diving Association of Australia, the Australian Speleological Federation Cave Diving Group, Global Underwater Explorers, and the Woodville Karst Plain Project. He remains an avid underwater cave explorer, both near his home in Florida and abroad.