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CDW CEO Tom Richards Is Retiring

‘This is the right time for this transition,’ said CDW CEO Tom Richards in a prepared statement. ‘CDW today is stronger than ever, and Chris Leahy is the right choice to lead us into our next chapter.’

CDW CEO Tom Richards, who led the company for nine years of explosive sales growth, is stepping aside at the end of the year.

Chief Revenue Officer Christine Leahy, a 16-year CDW veteran who began her career at the solution provider behemoth as general counsel, will replace Richards as CEO and join the company’s board of directors effective Jan. 1, 2019.

"This is the right time for this transition," said Richards in a prepared statement. "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.”

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Richards, who helped drive CDW sales from $9.6 billion in revenue in 2011 when he took the helm to more than $15 billion in 2017, said he is confident that Leahy “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,”

Joining Leahy as part of the succession plans is CDW Senior Vice President of Commercial and International Markets Christina Corley, who will take on the newly created role of CDW Chief Operating Officer in January.

Corley, a seven-year CDW veteran and former Chief Operating Officer of national solution provider Zones, will be responsible for sales and sales operations, strategic solutions , services, and international.

Speaking on behalf of the board of directors, Lead Director Barry Allen said the board “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.”

CDW shares were up 42 cents in early morning trading Tuesday to $89.32.

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