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David Aldrich Nelson (born 1932) is a United States federal judge.

Nelson was born in Watertown, New York. He received an A.B. from Hamilton College in 1954. He received an LL.B. from Harvard Law School in 1958. He was in private practice in Cleveland, Ohio from 1958 to 1959. He was a U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Attorney-advisor, Office of General Counsel from 1959 to 1962. He was in private practice in Cleveland, Ohio from 1962 to 1969. He was a General counsel, U.S. Postal Service from 1969 to 1971. He was a Senior assistant postmaster general and general counsel, U.S. Postal Service in 1971. He was in private practice in Cleveland, Ohio from 1972 to 1985.

Nelson was a federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Nelson was nominated by President Ronald Reagan on September 9, 1985, to a new seat created by 98 Stat. 333. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on October 16, 1985, and received his commission on October 17, 1985. He assumed senior status on October 1, 1999.

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