Neal Sample

Former EVP & CIO
Northwestern Mutual

Neal Sample was most recently EVP & Chief Information Officer responsible for leading the Technology function at Northwestern Mutual. His key areas of accountability included technology strategy (architecture, infrastructure and cloud services, engineering and customer success); data and analytics; enterprise information risk and cybersecurity; digital workplace solutions; and the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute.

Prior to acquisition by Cigna, Sample was executive vice president, chief operating officer at Express Scripts where he was responsible for operations, technology, and enterprise transformation.   He aligned overall information technology strategy and performance with pharmacy processing and fulfillment in order to create synergies that drove improvements to the member and client experiences.

Sample previously served in key executive leadership roles at American Express, including President, Enterprise Growth, where he leveraged emerging technologies to reach new customers and geographies, expand mobile and online payment services, and foster inclusion for clients poorly served by traditional financial systems. Earlier at American Express, he held the CIO position for that business where he managed end-to-end platform technology, infrastructure and operations, and the suite of American Express prepaid products, including the delivery and implementation of the Bluebird, SoftCard, and retail distribution partnerships. Prior to American Express, Sample served in a variety of senior leadership positions at companies such as eBay/PayPal, Yahoo!, and RightOrder.

Sample received his MS and PhD in Computer Science from Stanford University. He also received a BA and MS in Computer Science from the University of Wyoming. Additionally, he completed a post-doctoral research fellowship with the CIA Office of Research and Development.

Sample is currently on the Business Advisory Committee of the Lubar School of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, serves on the Board of Wellfield Technologies, is the Vice Chair on the Board of the University of Health Sciences and Pharmacy, and is an advisor to several startups.