Nels is a native of Houghton and obtained his undergraduate degree from James Madison College at Michigan State University. He earned his law degree from Michigan State University College of Law. He has a general practice with an emphasis on general civil litigation, family law, and criminal defense.
- Michigan State University College of Law, J.D., 2001;
- Michigan State University, James Madison College, B.A., 1997.
- 2001, Michigan;
- 2002, U.S. District Court, Western and Eastern Districts of Michigan;
- 2008, U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit.
- Marquette County and American Bar Associations;
- State Bar of Michigan.
- State Bar of Michigan, Representative Assembly (25th Circuit) (Member);
- State Bar of Michigan, Upper Michigan Legal Institute Advisory Committee (Member).
- City of Marquette Arts & Culture Committee (Member);
- Marquette County Historical Society (Member);
- Marquette Yacht Club (Member);
- Friends of the DeVos Art Museum (Member).