David J. Wimer, 65, a prominent adviser to presidents, governments and corporations here and abroad, died of complications of cancer Oct. 15 at Fairfax Inova Hospital.
Mr. Wimer was a partner with PA Consulting Group, an international management consulting firm, and had been president of ColumbusNewport LLC, a professional services firm based in Arlington since 1999.
For four years, he was also president and chief operating officer of the Hay Group Inc., one of the world's largest management and human resources consulting firms, with operations in 30 countries. All told, he worked with the Hay Group for 17 years in a variety of domestic and international senior management positions, including a post in Brazil, where he lived from 1974 to 1977.
From 1991 to 1999, Mr. Wimer served as president of the International Planning and Analysis Center, which was established in 1983 as the consulting arm of Sears World Trade. Mr. Wimer and his partners were also responsible for the purchase of Newmyer Associates, Washington's oldest government affairs firm.
The merged firms were renamed the Columbus Group. In 1999, the combined firms were renamed ColumbusNewport under Mr. Wimer's leadership.
He worked extensively in the international, commercial and public affairs arenas, having served as the most senior adviser on initiatives of national importance in numerous countries, including Kuwait after the Persian Gulf War.
Mr. Wimer had also served in the Department of Labor.
For three years, while on leave of absence from the Hay Group, Mr. Wimer served in the White House as special assistant to the president and director of presidential personnel for Presidents Richard M. Nixon and Gerald R. Ford.
As the senior presidential aide for personnel, he was responsible for the recruitment and recommendation to the president of all Cabinet, subcabinet and executive-level appointments within the federal government. He worked with Gen. Alexander Haig, White House chief of staff in the Nixon administration.
When he left the Nixon White House in 1974, he told The Washington Post that his tenure there had been "extremely tough." He added: "And yet even at the worst times, good things were being done."
"I'm glad I had the experience at the White House," he continued. "You feel you are working for the good of the country, not the good of an administration."
Mr. Wimer was born in Burbank, Calif., and graduated from the University of California at Los Angeles. While in college, he was a national cadet commander of Air Force ROTC and worked as a night watchman for entertainer Bob Hope.
He received a master's degree in public administration from California State University and studied at the National University of Mexico in Mexico City. He was in the Air Force for seven years, leaving with the rank of captain.
His marriage to Darlene Wimer ended in divorce.
Survivors include his wife, Elaine Patterson Wimer of McLean; three children from the first marriage, Jennifer L. Ehrhardt and Eric W. Wimer, both of Vienna, and Kimberly L. Wimer Sullivan of Falls Church; a brother; two sisters; five grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.