Pathways to Connection. This September, we embarked on a journey focused on forging meaningful connections within the Korean American community. We celebrated the bonds that tie us together and explored new avenues for engagement. CKA is thrilled to introduce Bruce Han, our new Director of Engagement and Development, who began on September 5, energized to carry out the mission and values of the organization.
We started this month with a delegation trip to Seoul, a journey that not only deepened our connections but also brought us in touch with NetKAL Korea, a potentially valuable addition to our community network. During our visit, we had the privilege of meeting with US Ambassador Philip Goldberg, further solidifying the bridge between the Korean American community and diplomatic circles. It was an opportunity to both reconnect with familiar faces and forge new connections, expanding our reach and influence.
Chuseok provides a poignant backdrop for our theme this month. As people travel across the country to reunite with their families, we celebrate the power of family connections and the cultural ties that bind us together.
We are currently in a state of excited preparation for the upcoming 2023 CKA Envision Gala & Summit. This event serves as a focal point for our community to come together, offering an opportunity to reconnect with old friends and make new connections. It is a testament to our commitment to fostering unity and strengthening the pathways that link us all.
Highly regarded gallerist CKA Member Tina Kim is traveling the globe! She had a successful experience at Frieze Seoul (where she is a committee member and her booth was given the Frieze Stand Prize), and is currently preparing for the upcoming Frieze London, ADAA, and Art Basel Miami Beach.
Tina Kim’s presentations include work by her international roster of artists, many of whom are the subject of major institutional exhibitions in 2023 and 2024. Tina Kim’s presentation of Dansaekhwa artists coincides with the major exhibition “Only the Young: Experimental Art in Korea, 1960s-1970s,” which is on view at New York’s Guggenheim Museum through early 2024. Tina Kim showcases work by the celebrated Suki Seokyeong Kang, whose solo exhibition “Willow Drum Oriole” is currently on view at Leeum Museum of Art through December 31.
Another Tina Kim artist, Pacita Abad, is the subject of a North American retrospective that recently closed at the Walker Art Center, traveling to SFMoMA, and MoMA PS1. Ghada Amer was the subject of a retrospective organized by the MUCEM in Marseilles. Ghada Amer will be having her solo exhibition Paravent Girls in Tina’s New York gallery, opening October 26. Tina Kim works with artist Mire Lee, whose first US solo exhibition recently closed at the New Museum. In addition, Kim represents the Busan, Korea born, Colorado-based artist Maia Ruth Lee, who has newly joined her gallery. Tina Kim recently added the innovative South Korean painter, the late Kang Seok Ho (1971-2021), to her thriving roster of artists.
Eugene Cho Offered Keynote at Special Naturalization Ceremony for Constitution Day
Eugene Cho was invited by Dr. Colleen Shogan, the Archivist of the United States, to give the keynote remarks at a special Naturalization Ceremony at the National Archives Museum in Washington, DC. He was joined by the Honorable James E. Boasberg, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, who presided over the ceremony. The highlight was to witness 25 people from 24 countries who made their oaths as new naturalized citizens!
Songyee Yoon appointed as MIT School of Engineering Visiting Innovation Scholar
Songyee Yoon, President of NCSOFT, has been appointed as a School of Engineering visiting innovation scholar for the 2023-24 academic year. As a visiting innovation scholar, Yoon will engage in a variety of activities with faculty, students, and staff across MIT’s School of Engineering. Additionally, she will provide guidance to the dean of engineering on strategic initiatives, cutting-edge programs, and the entrepreneurial ecosystem within the school.
Charlie Kim Named LMG Life Sciences 2023 Corporate Attorney of the Year
Cooley Global Capital Markets Practice Group Co-Chair Charlie Kim was recently named the 2023 Corporate Attorney of the Year by LGM Life Sciences. Cooley has now been counsel on 7 of the 8 U.S. life sciences IPOs raising at least $20 million in 2023 to date, with Charlie having worked on 5 of them (on the company side: ACELYRIN, RayzeBio and Structure; on the bank side: Apogee and Neumora). Many of these companies have prominent API leaders in management. Congratulations, Charlie!
John Lee honored NAAAP’s Chairman’s Award in Boston
John S. Lee received the NAAAP (National Association of Asian American Professionals) Chairman’s Award during the annual Leadership Convention in Boston. The award recognizes leadership and impact within the national Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. NAAAP is the largest professional organization focused on networking and advocacy of AAPI professionals in the US and Canada. Congratulations, John!
Andrew I. Kim & Team Publish New Lancet Commission on TB Report
Andrew I. Kim worked with a team to synthesize input from dozens of activists, TB survivors, researchers, and experts from across the globe, including Dr. Anthony Fauci and AMB Eric Goosby, to publish the new Lancet Commission on TB Report which outlines the devastating setbacks to Ending TB as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, proposes a new menu of tools including novel diagnostics, vaccines, preventive therapy, nutrition, and shorter treatment regimens (1/4/6×24) and calls upon the global community (ahead of the UN General Assembly) to make ambitious investments and commitments to end TB once and for all.
1587 Sneakers, co-founded by CKA members Sam Hyun and Jerry Won makes the front page of the Boston Globe
1587 Sneakers, a start-up sneaker brand, was recently on the front page of the Boston Globe. The name reflects the year the first Asian stepped foot in what is now known as North America. The brand also seeks to celebrate and uplift Asian Americans unapologetically. 1587 Sneakers has been making waves, with celebrities Daniel Dae Kim and Daniel Wu posting about their own pairs on social media. 1587 Sneakers was co-founded by Adam King, Sam Hyun, and Jerry Won, launching on 5-1-23.
Clinical Skincare Brand MATTER OF FACT launches at Sephora Nationwide
Award-winning clinical skincare brand, MATTER OF FACT, recently partnered with Sephora, launching on Sephora.com and across 270 doors nationwide. Their line of products, formulated by Founder Paul Baek, is based on industry-first, patent-pending technologies that deliver proven actives to skin via revolutionary delivery systems for superior results. MATTER OF FACT’s clinical research has been published in the peer-reviewed, high-impact medical journal, the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, and was presented at the International Societies of Investigative Dermatology’s conference in Tokyo earlier this year.
Youngwon Lee: Among the Elite Eleven – SevenFifty Daily’s 2023 Drinks Innovators Shaping the Future of Beverages
Exciting news from the beverage world! Dokkaebier’s founder, Youngwon Lee, has been honored as one of the Top 11 innovators by SevenFifty Daily. This esteemed recognition is given to trailblazers reshaping the drinks industry’s landscape. Youngwon’s dedication and visionary approach to beer has distinguished him from other brands.
June Lee joins Abivax Board of Directors
Abivax, a biotech company in Phase 3 clinical trials, has announced the addition of June Lee, M.D. as new independent member to the Abivax Board of Directors. The company’s primary focus is on developing therapeutics that modulate the immune system to treat patients with chronic inflammatory diseases. Congratulations, June!
Sung-Dae Hong Joins StatLab as Chief Executive Officer
StatLab Medical Products, a company that develops and manufactures diagnostic supplies and equipment, has announced the appointment of Sung-Dae Hong as its Chief Executive Officer. StatLab expressed confidence in Dae’s ability to lead the global business and inspire transformation within the organization. Congratulations, Dae!
Charles H. Jung installed as President of IAKL Overseas
Nassiri & Jung Partner Charles H. Jung was installed as President of the International Association of Korean Lawyers (IAKL) Overseas. IAKL is a global organization of over 3,000 Korean lawyers in more than 20 countries. The installation took place during the Seoul Conference in September, where attendees heard from the President of the Republic of Korea, the Chief Justices of both the Supreme Court of Korea and the Constitutional Court of Korea, and the Presidents of both the Korean Bar Association and the Seoul Bar Association. Congratulations, Charles!
Art Collector Interview Series w/ Dow Kim by Artnet News
Philanthropist Dow Kim started collecting 25 years ago with a Marc Chagall Painting and hasn’t looked back. The collector just finished a visit to Frieze Seoul, where he did not leave empty-handed. “It’s great to see Korea emerging as a significant art center,” he said. “Many Koreans and Korean Americans are starting their own journeys in collecting.”
Esther ‘Star’ Kimm to work with Aevum, Inc. – Autonomous Transport Service
Esther ‘Star’ Kimm joins Jay Skylus leading the recruitment at Aevum Inc. where they have built the RAVN X, (powered by AI) which is the world’s first autonomous, reusable launch system for space transports at the speed of software. Congratulations, Esther!
Eun Ah Choi presents at the 2023 Nasdaq Surveillance Conference in Tokyo
Nasdaq Surveillance Conference connects the global surveillance community (exchanges, regulators and trading firms) to share expertise, best practices and gain insight into the latest industry trends. Eun Ah Choi served on a panel with representatives from Asian and American trading firms as well as European data analytics firm to discuss a wide range of topics, including impact of social media on trading, implications of AI on trade surveillance, cryptocurrency and market integrity.
Soo Kim Speaks with Bloomberg, Fox News on Trilateral Summit, U.S. Soldier Detained in North Korea
LMI’s Policy Practice Area Lead Soo Kim recently joined Bloomberg television to recap key takeaways from the US-Japan-South Korea summit and Fox News to discuss North Korea’s statement on the status of detained U.S. soldier, Travis King.
Jean H. Lee Shares North Korea expertise on CNN, NPR, BBC, PBS
North Korea analyst Jean H. Lee joined CNN’s Erin Burnett Out Front, CNN’s The Situation Room, NPR’s All Things Considered, PBS NewsHour, and the BBC to discuss North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s visit to Russia to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Duyeon Kim expert analysis and in-depth coverage on Camp David Summit & much more
Duyeon Kim recently published an op-ed in Foreign Policy about the US-Korea-Japan Camp David Summit; had a private meeting with Under Secretary of State Bonnie Jenkins in Seoul and was given a shout-out by Under Secretary Jenkins on LinkedIn; was interviewed on CNN about the Camp David summit; and was interviewed on BBC about the Kim-Putin summit.
The inaugural AAPI Leadership Summit in Boston, led by Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, The Asian Community Fund, TAAF, and Leaders Forum was a resounding success, leaving a lasting impact on our community. From September 23-24, AAPI leaders from across the country gathered to celebrate local artists, strengthen partnerships, and envision a future with AAPI voices at the forefront of leadership.
The summit featured three events, including the Building AAPI Power & Leadership Pipelines Lunch and AAPI Leaders Dinner, with over 60 leaders in attendance, which highlighted local AAPI businesses and chefs.
The AAPI Arts & Culture Community Convening on September 24 brought together over 100 attendees, including local artists, to explore the intersection of arts, health, empowerment, and narrative change. Together, we began crafting a regional strategy for a more connected, inclusive, and sustainable AAPI arts and culture ecosystem.
The impact of this summit on our community is profound. It strengthens our resolve to support our talented members and leaders and to contribute to the broader AAPI narrative. Together, we are forging a brighter future for all AAPI communities. Special thank you to Mayor Wu, CKA Member Samuel Hyun, The Asian Community Fund, TAAF, Leaders Forum, and their teams for a magnificent weekend.
We’re thrilled to share the remarkable achievement of Korean-American Singer Eric Nam, who has been named a recipient of The TIME100 Impact Award! Held in Singapore, the ceremony brought together honorees, leaders, and innovators to discuss leveraging their influence for positive change. Eric Nam was honored for being an introspective K-pop sensation exploring life’s profound inquiries through music. This recognition not only celebrates his incredible talent but also highlights the global impact of Korean-American artists on the world stage.
Through his latest album, Eric Nam is making musical waves by tackling life’s biggest existential questions. Alongside his brothers, Eric co-founded DIVE Studios to spur mental health conversations in K-pop. They also launched Mindset, an app sharing raw artist stories on mental health struggles. Through music and activism, Eric advocates for grace and understanding around well-being, acknowledging that even superstar idols face struggles and imperfections. For Eric, music, media, and mental health activism go hand-in-hand.
September saw CKA Executive Director Abraham Kim on a dynamic journey across the United States and Pacific Ocean. During his week-long visit in Seoul, Abe engaged with Korean American expatriates, CKA members, Korea-based funders, and representatives from NetKAL Korea, all coinciding with his attendance at the prestigious Seoul Frieze global art festival.
Abe held constructive discussions with Korean civic leaders and thought leaders, emphasizing the growing significance of the Korean American diaspora in fostering robust US-Korea relations, particularly as both nations celebrated their 70th anniversary of bilateral alliance. Collaborating closely with community leaders, including CKA Chair Peter Huh, CKA Board Member Eugene Choi, and CKA Members Jihee Huh and Carol Choi, Abe met with prominent figures like Korea Foundation President Kim, Kihwan, US Ambassador Philip Goldberg, and Former Trade Minister Bark, Taeho. These discussions aimed to explore ways to reinforce the connections between our communities.
Abe’s visit also included a significant meeting with NetKAL – Korea Board members, where they explored potential avenues for collaboration between Korean Global professionals in Seoul and the Korean American professional community in the United States, promising a more interconnected community.
In the spirit of nurturing community, CKA hosted a dinner gathering in Seoul, uniting CKA members residing in the city and those attending the Seoul Frieze art festival, fostering camaraderie and a shared commitment to the CKA mission.
Towards the end of the Month, Abe participated in significant engagements in New York City, where he is a Board Member of The Korea Society. He participated in the organization’s 2023 Annual Dinner, honoring the Georgia Department of Economic Development and the Korea International Trade Association (KITA) for their exceptional contributions to U.S.-Korea economic ties.
Throughout September, Abe continued to meet with CKA members and friends, fostering connections and advancing the mission of the Council of Korean Americans. Stay tuned for more updates on his endeavors as he continues to lead and engage with our dynamic CKA network and prepares for the 2023 Envision Gala & Summit next month.