David James Dodd was born in 1951 and became a British Rail Graduate Entrant Management Trainee from 1973 to 1975. From 1975 to 1985 he undertook various supervisory and junior management posts, and in 1985 became Area Manager at Tonbridge in British Rail: Southern Region, serving in this role until 1987. He moved to Paris in 1987 and worked as the Manager of British Rail International Office until 1990. He then joined Network SouthEast’s Thames & Chiltern division as Retail Manager from 1990 to 1993. At privatisation in 1994 he joined the Office of Passenger Rail Franchising (OPRAF) as an Executive from 1994 to 2000 and then worked as an Executive for the Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) between 2000 and 2004.