Secretary’s Office

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson appointed Michael (Mike) Preston Secretary of Commerce in July 2019 and retained his position of four years as executive director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission.

Since 2015, the Hutchinson administration along with Secretary Preston, has inked 524 agreements totaling $10.5 Billion employing almost 24,000 Arkansans, with an average wage of almost $21.00.

During the pandemic, the Arkansas Department of Commerce oversaw $3.5 Billion in Cares Act funding and pandemic unemployment insurance. Additional funds from the American Rescue Plan of 2021 will be distributed by the Department.

Over the years, Preston has made successful business recruitment trips to Japan, China, France, Germany, Israel, Cuba, Mexico, Italy, United Kingdom, New York City and Silicon Valley. The trips continue to play an important role in the state’s economic development efforts.

In 2018, Preston was selected to join The Wall Street Journal’s prestigious CEO Council. It is an invitation-only group that connects some of the world’s most ambitious and influential leaders to discuss the issues shaping the future. The members lead companies that collectively employ more than eight million people, generate $2.9 trillion in annual revenue, and represent 20 countries in a wide cross section of industries.

Prior to his Secretariate, Preston served six and a half years as the Vice President of Government Relations for Enterprise Florida, the state’s primary economic development organization.

Secretary Preston is a 2005 graduate of the University of Florida. He and his wife, Anne – along with young son Pierce– are proud to call Arkansas home. They both volunteer in the community in a variety of ways, including the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Arkansas and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Secretary Mike Preston

Secretary Mike Preston

Secretary, Arkansas Department of Commerce
Division Director, Arkansas Economic Development Commission

Powered by Lapero