About CDW > Leadership > David W. Nelms

David W. Nelms

Lead Independent Director

David W. Nelms photo

David Nelms currently serves as the Lead Independent Director of our Board of Directors since January 5, 2023. He previously served as our board’s Non-Executive Chair from 2020 to 2023 and as Lead Director from 2019 to 2020.  Nelms is the retired Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Discover Financial Services, a direct banking and payment services company.  He served as Executive Chairman from September 2018 to December of 2018.

Nelms joined Discover in 1998 as President and Chief Operating Officer. He was elected Chairman of the Board at Discover in January 2009, having served as Chief Executive Officer since 2004. Prior to joining Discover, Nelms worked at MBNA America Bank from 1991 to 1998, most recently as Vice Chairman. From 1990 to 1991, he was a senior product manager for Progressive Insurance.  Nelms served as a management consultant with Bain & Company from 1986 to 1990.

Nelms also serves on the executive board of directors of the University of Florida Foundation. Nelms is a graduate of University of Florida where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a graduate of Harvard Business School where he earned a Master of Business Administration.