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CDW announces change of CEO

September 19, 2018

CDW has announced that Tom Richards, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, will step down on 31 December 2018, after nine years with CDW.  

Richards will become Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors and serve through at least 2019.  Christine Leahy will become Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors as of 1 January 2019.  Additionally, Christina Corley will become Chief Operating Officer.

Under Richards’ leadership the company achieved outstanding performance, rising from #270 on the Fortune 500 list to #189. 

“Being a part of CDW and collaborating with co-workers to drive its success has been an honour. I’m deeply proud of all we’ve achieved together. This is the right time for this transition,” said Richards. “CDW today is stronger than ever, and Chris Leahy is the right choice to lead us into our next chapter.  Chris has been instrumental in the development of our strategy and demonstrates that rare combination of skills and traits that make her ideally suited to be CEO: she has a strategic mind with an execution instinct, she’s a continuous learner with a passion for our co-workers and culture, and she is relentlessly focused on the customer experience. There is no doubt that Chris will put her own stamp on CDW’s legacy of building strong partnerships, a strong co-worker culture, and keeping our customers at the heart of everything we do,” Richards concluded.

Leahy is currently Chief Revenue Officer, responsible for all customer-facing units of the company, including its corporate, public, small business, international, and strategic solutions and services organisations.  Leahy joined CDW as General Counsel and a member of the Executive Committee in 2002.  Prior to her role as Chief Revenue Officer, she served as Senior Vice President, International, where she was responsible for the performance of CDW’s international business, having led the development of the company’s international strategy, including the acquisition of Kelway, now CDW UK.  

“CDW is a remarkable place. Throughout four decades, CDW’s steadfast commitment to our customers, co-workers, and partners has resulted in a unique constant within an ever-changing industry – performance that outpaces the market and fuels our ability to evolve and innovate to serve our stakeholders,” said Leahy. “It will be an honour to lead the extraordinary CDW team as we build upon our heritage and embrace the future.  I am grateful to Tom and our Board of Directors for their support and confidence, and I am committed to bringing all of my energy and capabilities to this role.” 

Christina Corley, who will assume the newly created Chief Operating Officer role in January, will be responsible for sales and sales operations, strategic solutions & services, and international. She joined CDW in 2011 and is currently Senior Vice President of Commercial and International Markets for CDW. Corley is responsible for all aspects of the corporate sales force and for CDW’s international growth platform, including CDW Canada and CDW UK.

“Chris Corley is an exceptional leader with broad industry experience and a deep commitment to our customers,” said Leahy.  “Her strong sales and operating leadership, strategic perspective and cultivation of talent will keep us agile and relevant to best serve our customers now and in the future.  I am delighted that Chris will take on this new role.”

Speaking on behalf of the Board of Directors, Barry K. Allen, Lead Director said, “We have worked closely with Tom through a deliberative, thoughtful succession process to identify the next CEO and the right structure to enable CDW’s future success.  Today we celebrate and thank Tom for his enormous contributions, and we look toward the future with great confidence.”


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