David F. Welch, Ph.D. is Founder and Chief Innovation Officer at Infinera, a role he has held since October 2018. In this role, he drives deep business and technology innovation through forward-looking strategies, including breakthrough technologies and technology partnerships, in addition to innovative business and market directions. Dr. Welch is currently a member of Infinera’s Board of Directors, where he has served the company since 2010. His past roles at Infinera include Chief Strategy and Technology Officer from 2017 to 2018, President from 2013 to 2017, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer from 2004 to 2013 and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) from 2001 to 2004. Prior to co-founding Infinera, he served as CTO, Transmission Division at JDS Uniphase, and in various executive roles, including CTO and Vice President of Corporate Development, at Spectra Diode Labs (SDL).
Dr. Welch currently serves on the Board of Directors several start-up companies. He holds over 130 patents, and over 300 technical publications, and has been awarded the Optical Society of America’s (OSA) Adolph Lomb Medal, Joseph Fraunhofer Award and John Tyndall Award, as well as the Institute of Engineering Technology’s J J Thompson Medal for Electronics. He is a Fellow of OSA and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and is a member of the National Academy of Engineering.
Dr. Welch holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Delaware and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University.