James S. Cheng
Secretary of Commerce and Trade
As Secretary of Commerce & Trade, Jim Cheng manages the jobs and opportunity agenda for Virginia. In this role, Secretary Cheng oversees thirteen state agencies focused on promoting the growth of Virginia’s vibrant business community and attracting new investment into Virginia’s economy.
Secretary Cheng has over 20 years of experience in information technology and government contracting, and is active in angel investment and early stage entrepreneurial ventures of various types. He was most recently the President of Totus Lighting Solutions, a startup efficient-energy firm, and mentored several emerging companies.
From 1994-2005, Secretary Cheng was founder and CEO of CHM, a government contracting company specializing in Information Technology, which he grew from a staff of 5 people to 550 and $90M in revenue at the time of sale in 2005. In 1999, his company was named Virginia Business Magazine's fastest growing private company in Virginia and #12 fastest growing private US company in Inc Magazine's "Inc 500". In 2001, he was named SE Virginia's KPMG Entrepreneur of the year. From 1981-1994 at ECI, a government IT contracting firm, Secretary Cheng held various management and technical positions, rising to the position of Sr. Vice President of Marketing.
Secretary Cheng is active in the community and has served on the boards of non-profits, state-level and community organizations. He was a board member of the Virginia Small Business Finance Authority from 1999-2007, and is currently a Trustee of the Darden School Foundation at UVA, and a member of the ODU Education Foundation Board. Secretary Cheng holds a BS Degree in Computer Science from Old Dominion University, a MBA from the Colgate Darden Graduate School of Business (UVA) and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center.
Long-time residents of Virginia Beach, Jim and his wife, Jeanette, moved to Northern Virginia in the late 1990's, where they reside.