CHICAGO — Gov. Bruce Rauner today said that Deputy Gov. Leslie Munger would be taking on the new role of acting director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO). She replaces Director Sean McCarthy, who has accepted a position in the private sector.
“Leslie has more than two decades of private-sector experience, has connections with top business leaders, and is familiar with our pending economic development projects,” Rauner said. “In addition, she’s our point person on the Amazon HQ2 bid and leads the Bicentennial effort. She is the clear choice to take on this interim role.
“Sean is a tremendously capable manager whose leadership has helped to re-energize our state’s business development efforts,” the governor continued. “He was instrumental in helping Illinois attract companies such as Flex-N-Gate, Buddig, Faber-Castell and Haribo’s North American Headquarters. He’s been a difference-maker for minority entrepreneurs and small businesses, and he has been an outspoken champion of transparency.”
Munger has led the administration’s business development efforts, including overseeing DCEO, since February 2017 when she was appointed deputy governor. In addition to her Amazon role, Munger has been a key player in the Discovery Partners Institute, the plan created by the governor to spur massive economic development through partnerships between the state’s research universities, tech entrepreneurs and businesses.
A native Illinoisan, she earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of Illinois and her master’s degree from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. In the private sector, she held executive and brand level positions with Helene Curtis/Unilever, Procter & Gamble and McKinsey and Co.
Prior to becoming deputy governor, Munger served as Illinois’ comptroller.