- Associated Press - Friday, February 13, 2015

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has appointed equity fund founder Jim Schultz the state’s new director of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

In announcing the appointment Friday, the governor’s office said the experience the 55-year-old Schultz has in agribusiness and banking gives him the knowledge to help develop and support businesses in the state.

Schultz is currently the chairman of Open Prairie Ventures, Inc., a company he founded in 1997, which provides private equity services and manages more than $135 million.

A graduate of Southern Methodist University in 1980, Schultz holds a law degree from DePaul University and an MBA from Northwestern University. He has worked in banking and headed an auto dealership.

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