As director of Maine International Trade Center’s Maine North Atlantic Development Office (MENADO), Dana Eidsness works to develop trade, investment and international collaboration opportunities for Maine businesses and academic institutions in northern Europe, Atlantic Canada and Nordic countries.
Mainebiz: What triggered your interest in the international field?
Dana Eidsness: When I was a kid, my parents sold everything we had and bought a red pick-up truck with a camper on the back and we traveled for a couple of years. At one point we lived on a beach in Manzanillo, Mexico, and later in Mexico City. Later at Portland High School, I was fortunate to be exposed to a variety of international history courses as well as a robust foreign language program where I studied French, Russian and Mandarin. The summer before my senior year, I went to Beijing to study Mandarin. I went on to study international service and development and then international relations and import/export management in college, started my career in the private sector importing consumer goods and textiles, and later moved into international business development and trade policy.