Appointed by Governor Sam Brownback, Antonio J. Soave of Overland Park is the Acting Secretary of Commerce.
Soave is the current chairman and CEO of Capistrano Global Advisory Services (CGA). In a career spanning more than 20 years, he has helped numerous entrepreneurs and businesses to expand and grow. He previously served as an adjunct professor of international economics and finance at the Walsh College of Business in Troy, Mich. and was an intern in the White House Office of Public Liaison’s Department of Foreign Policy and Defense under President Ronald Reagan.
“Antonio’s experience working with businesses in a wide range of industries including rail, construction, oil and gas, biotech and manufacturing gives him an excellent understanding of industry needs and how Kansas can help those companies grow and create jobs,” said Governor Brownback. “He brings both enthusiasm for entrepreneurship and solid business experience that will benefit all Kansans.”
His wife, Ann, is a native of Ft. Scott. They have four children, Francesco, 6; Maria Bernadette, 3; Gianpaolo, 2; and Anna Maria Faustina, 3 months.
Soave is active on a number of boards and organizations. He is an International Advisory Council member of the United States Institute of Peace and served as the Executive Director of the School of Business at Benedictine College. He has a Bachelor’s degree in international studies from The American University in Washington, D.C., a Juris Doctor from the Detroit College of Law at Michigan State University and a Masters of Law in International Law from the University of San Diego.
"It is an honor to serve the state of Kansas in this position,” Soave said. “Kansas is a great state for businesses looking for a skilled workforce and tax-friendly environment. In fact, it is one of the best states in the nation when considering pertinent factors such as overall business climate, quality of life, quality of healthcare and quality of education, as well as ease of doing business. Kansas is an exceptional place to live and work, and it is strategically located in the middle of the country.”
Soave will join Commerce in December. He replaces Pat George who retired at the end of July. This appointment will require confirmation by the Kansas Senate.