He will also be the first representative of a digital agency to lead the body, which aims to stimulate the highest creative standards in advertising and design.
Waterfall, 35, was elected deputy president last week. He will take over from the current president, Tony Davidson, Wieden & Kennedy's joint creative director, when his term of office expires next September.
Michael Hockney, the D&AD chief executive, said: "With his extensive background in digital communications, Simon has a lot to contribute as the D&AD deputy president."
One of the founders of the Deepend studio in 1994, Waterfall was awarded a Royal Society of Arts fellowship in recognition of his contribution to British design. He is also a member of the Art Directors' Club of New York. He said: "Although I will be the youngest president, I am, in fact, the old boy of digital design."
D&AD has traditionally alternated the presidency between representatives of the advertising and design communities, but it changed its constitution in July to allow for the president and the D&AD board to be selected from a wide range of creative disciplines.
The new board members include Sebastian Conran, the creative director of Conran & Partners; Bret Foraker, Channel 4's creative director; and Tim Molloy, the Science Museum's head of strategic design.
If you have an opinion on this or any other issue raised on Brand Republic, join the debate in the Forum.