Desmond was first elected as an MP for the New Forest in 1997.
After university he taught A level Economics for seven years before spending ten years as a bank manager responsible for risk management systems.
In 2003 Desmond was mobilised and served in the Army in Iraq. He remains a serving officer in the reserves. Desmond also spent five years as a board member of an investment fund.
From 2005 to 2012 Desmond was David Cameron’s Parliamentary Private Secretary. He became a member of the Privy Council in 2011. He was subsequently appointed a Lord Commissioner of the Treasury, and Vice Chamberlain of HM Household. In July 2014, he was appointed Minister of State for International Development.