Adam Shanks Named Director International Trade for Illinois

The U.S. Department of Commerce recently hired Adam Shanks as the Director of International Trade, who will support businesses in the Northwest Illinois territory.

Adam comes from the private sector and brings over 16 years of international business experience working in the meteorological industry. Between 2005 and 2018, Adam was the Sales Manager for Central America, the Caribbean, and Mexico for Vaisala Inc. From 2013 to 2018, he managed the region’s operations from Mexico City. And in 2018, Adam moved to Dusseldorf, Germany, to work for Leonardo Germany as the Regional Sales Manager for the Americas and South Korea.

During his tenure in the meteorological industry, Adam navigated government bureaucracies to import and export goods and services, coordinated with multi-lateral institutions, and designed successful market entry strategies for multiple countries. Adam specialized in various sectors where weather affects mission-critical operations, such as aviation, mining, energy, and defense.

In addition, Adam would often create rapid export solutions to countries after hurricanes, floods, and aviation incidents to help in recovery and mitigation efforts.

Adam was born in Duluth, Minnesota, and grew up in Covina, California. He attended the University of California earning a degree in Economics. Later, he received an MBA in international business from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona.

Adam will be working with all companies in the Rockford Region. 

Adam Shanks
Director, U.S. Commercial Service 
U.S. Department of Commerce|International Trade Administration
Mobile: 779.208.2211