J.M. "Jim" Schultz

Jim Schultz is co-founder and CEO of Intersect Illinois. Prior to becoming the CEO of Intersect Illinois, Governor Bruce Rauner named Jim Schultz Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce in February 2015. He is a fifth generation Illinoisan, agribusiness entrepreneur, and private equity executive.

In the most pioneering fashion, Jim and his family have farmed and built businesses throughout the State since 1840. In his hometown of Effingham, Illinois, Jim invested in a network center that created over 1,500 professional jobs for college graduates. He gained extensive leadership experience with early-stage capital expansion during his time at Open Prairie Ventures and Telemind Capital Corporation. As Chairman and Founder of Open Prairie Ventures, Jim ran private equity funds with investments in innovative technologies for agriculture, medical devices, and information systems. As President of Telemind Capital, Jim served as the financial expert on mergers and acquisitions for clients in software development, banking, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, and entertainment.

Jim is a recognized leader throughout the State of Illinois. He has served as Chairman of the Board for Prime Banc Corporation, the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, the Southeast Illinois Community Foundation, and the Effingham County Community Foundation. Jim also served on the Advisory Board for the Chicago Federal Reserve.

Jim earned his MBA in Finance & Entrepreneurship from Northwestern University, a Juris Doctor Degree in Corporate Finance from DePaul University, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from Southern Methodist University. Jim was born in Teutopolis, Illinois, and he currently lives in Effingham, Illinois, where he and his wife Laura raised their three sons.