Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford on Thursday officially introduced Steve Kim as his pick for lieutenant governor, noting "my Republican party needs to diversify."
Rutherford said he wants Kim, a Chicago attorney, to run the state's Office of Job Creation and Retention as part of a "unique and substantive" way to generate business in the state.
"We're going to talk to businesses," Kim told reporters, "to truly respond to business needs of the state."
Rutherford said he and Kim traveled to South Korea last year to make introductions to Korean companies wanting to expand.
Months away from the gubernatorial primary election, Illinois remains in a pension crisis with growing debt, a dwindling credit rating and no official resolution in sight. This summer, Gov. Pat Quinn used his line-item veto to cut $13.8 million from the budget for legislators' salaries after lawmakers didn't provide ideas for a solution.
A poll in April showed the Chicago area's wealthiest investors are more nervous about the state's economy than counterparts across the country.
It's made Illinois a target for job-luring. Texas Gov. Rick Perry came to Chicago in April on a mission to poach local businesses for his state. In 2011, Chris Christie made a trip of his own with the intent to lure away jobs.