David Alexander Haller was born at Pocahontas, Wythe Co., Virgina on September 5, 1888. He was the son of John Paulett Haller and Margaret Belle Whitman. Haller received his undergraduate degree in 1908 from Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, and his medical degree in 1913 from the College of Physicians & Surgeons in New York. He continued his medical training in Boston as an intern and resident at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital, during which period he published several articles in the medical literature on syphilis.
After serving as a medical officer with the American Expeditionary Force in France in 1917 and 1918, Haller came to Rochester, N.Y. (1919) to help form the Rochester Clinic, an early experiment in comprehensive group medical care. He later went into private practice in Rochester, and joined the staffs of the Rochester General Hospital, where he was chairman of medicine from 1926 to 1939, and Strong Memorial Hospital, the teaching hospital of the University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry.
In December 1917 Haller married Louise B. Wilson of New York. He retired from medical practice in 1946 following a heart attack. David Alexander Haller died at his home on January 27, 1971 as the result of a stroke.