REPORT

CHICAGO/MIDWEST MEETING:

PRELIMINARY ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING

FOR

THE KOREAN-AMERICAN LEAGUE

March 5-6, 1999

Chicago Marriott O’Hare

Chicago, Illinois

 

 

Participants:

 

Rev. Eun Chol Cho

9847 N. Karlov

Skokie, IL 60076

 

Mrs. Bonita Cho

Attorney At Law

3151 N. Lincoln Ave., #204

Chicago, IL 60657

(P) 773-935-4749, e-Mail:mbcho@aol.com

 

Mr. Michael Cho

Attorney At Law

3151 N. Lincoln Ave., #204

Chicago, IL 60657

 

Mr. Young Whan Cho

1400 Forest Dr.

Glenview, IL 60025

(P) 847-390-9700, (F) 847-299-3194

 

Mr. Hearn Chung

Professor of Theology

McCormick Theological Seminary

5555 South Woodlawn Ave.

Chicago, IL

1437 Juli-Lyn Court

Northbrook, IL 60062-4952

(P) 847-489-1624, e-Mail: hchun@mccormick.edu

 

Sam S. M. Hwang

1406 Greenbriar Lane

Darien, IL 60561-5027

(P) 630-964-3902, (F) 630-964-3902

 

Ms. Caroline Kim

Attorney At Law

525 W. Deming Pl. #330

Chicago, IL 60612

(P) (H) 773-529-4776, (P) (O) 312-433-5133, (F) 312-433-5129, e-Mail: ck175@aol.com

 

Prof. Chan-Hie Kim

Professor of New Testament and Christian Ministries

Claremont School of Theology

1325 N. College Ave.

Claremont, CA 91711-3199

(P) (H) 909-981-8925, (P) (O) 909-626-3521 Ext.1-282, (F) 909-982-5177, e-Mail: chkim@cst.edu

 

 

 

Mr. Jay Jung Heum Kim

Attorney At Law

5715 N. Lincoln Ave.

SUITE 200

Chicago, IL 60659

(P) 773-334-2600, (F) 773-334-2770, e-Mail: jhkesq@.com

 

Prof. Kwang Chung Kim

Department of Sociology

Western Illinois University

Macomb, IL 61455

332 S. Wesley

Oak Park, IL 60302

(P) 708-524-2298

 

Dr. Yoon Berm Kim

Professor and Chairman

Department of Microbiology and Immunology

Chicago Medical School

3333 Green Bay

N. Chicago, IL 60064

313 Weatherford Court

Lake Bluff, IL 60044

(P) (O) 847-578-3230, (P)(H) 847-295-5286, (F) 847-578-3349

 

Prof. Daniel B. Lee

Professor and Associate Dean

Graduate School of Social Work

Loyola University

Water Tower Campus

820 North Michigan Ave.

Chicago, IL 60611

(P) (O) 312-915-7024, (F) 312-915-7645, (P) (H) 773-973-5808, e- Mail: dlee@ wpo.it.luc.edu

 

Dr. David C. Lee

Otorhinolaryngology

6736 W. Navajo

Palos Heights, IL 60463

(P) 708-597-3619, (F) 708-597-6032

 

Rev. Keyong Hee Lee

Galilee Korean United Methodist Church

727 Hartem Ave.

Glenview, IL 60025

(P) (O) 847-998-4610, (F) (O) 847-998-6540, (P) (H) 847-390-0220

 

Mr. Samuel L. Oh

8883 S.W. 194th Ct.

Dunnellon, FL 34432

(P) 352-489-6300, e-Mail; ohlin 1@aol.com

 

Mr. Moo-Jae Pak

Senior Conversion Specialist

Conversion & Contract Cataloging Services

On-Line Computer Library Center, Inc. (OCLC)

6565 Frantz Road

Dublin, OH 43107-3395

2845 Snouffer Rd.

Columbus, OH 43235

(P)(H) 614-761-2174, (P) (O) 614-761-5036 or 800-848-5878, ext 5036, (F)(O) 614-718-7271

e-Mail: moo-jae_pak@oclc.org

 

Moon J. Pak, M.D., Ph.D.

Internal Medicine

811 Oakwood Dr., Suite 201

Rochester, MI 48307

(P) (H) 248-647-4307, (F)(H) 248-642-2852, (P)(O) 248-656-0177, (F)(O) 248-656-0249

(Pager) 248-400-1611, (Cell. Phone) 810-431-9699, e-Mail: moonpak@compuserve.com

 

Ms. Joyce Park

3203 Belwood Lane

Glenview, IL 60025

 

Dr. Kyu Young Park

Professor

Northeastern University

3203 Belwood Ln.

Glenview, IL 60025

(P) (O) 773-794-6519, (H) 847-724-6362

 

Dr. & Mrs. Won Tai Sohn

4795 Northwoods Dr.

Omaha, NE 68152-9710

(P) (H) 402-453-0640

 

Rev. Kil Sang Yoon

Director of Enlistment and Ethnic Concerns

General Board of Higher Education and Ministry

Division of Ordained Ministry

Section of Elders and Local Patrons

The United Methodist Church

1001 Nineteenth Ave., South

P.O. Box 871

Nashville, TN 37202-0871

(P)(O) 615-340-7397, (F)(O) 615-340-7395, e-Mail: ksyoon@gbhem.org

3152 Harborwood Drive

Nashville, TN 37214

(P) 615-316-0466, (F) 615-316-0460

 

 

The Meeting:

The meeting was opened by Dr.Pak, who was elected to chair the KAL Steering Committee at its first organizational meeting at Claremont, California. He presented the written report on the Claremont meeting and asked the participants to peruse it as it contains the conceptual framework of the KAL as proposed by Dr. Pak. He then distributed material he prepared containing an agenda of each session, a list of names of individuals who had been apprised of the concept of the KAL and had shown interest and support for the concept. Copies of Dr. Pak’s curriculum vitae were also made available to the participants. This was followed by a round of self-introduction by the participants.

The bulk of the first session was devoted to the presentation by Dr. Pak, who by way of slide presentation, gave the account of his and his organization’s frustratingly ineffective North Korea food-aid effort. He first gave the result of his analysis estimating the annual minimum food needed by North Korea to avert the famine in that country and compared the figure with the total raised by various Korean-American non-governmental organizations in the year ‘97-’98, and showed that it amounted to less than two days of food supply needed. This realization led him to the belief that rather than this kinds of self-reliance among the Korean-Americans, which obviously is a symbolic gesture at best, The Korean-Americans must funnel their effort to mobilize the U.S. main stream society by organizing themselves into a political action committee, which may be called the Korean-American League. He said that the organization once established may also espouse a broader objective; it could take positions on many selected issues relating to Korean-Americans and their community; it can even function as a think-tank that may develop a realistic, and comprehensive plan for the reconciliation and eventual unification of the Korean peninsula. He then went onto present his vision of a possible frame work of the organization.

After a brief break, the group got back together and with a suggestion by Rev.Yoon, regional coordinators were appointed representing the regions of LA and Chicago (Prof. Chan-Hie Kim, Prof. Elaine Kim representing LA area and Prof. Daniel B. Lee and Ms. Bonita Hwang, representing Chicago area). Rev. Yoon also suggested that it may be appropriate, if these coordinators somehow provide an input in the planning of the agenda for future meetings. The suggestion was taken under advisement by Dr.Pak.

Mr.Jay Kim commented that there are known to be over 200 Korean-American organizations in this country and how are we going to handle the formidable job of ensuring their representation and wondered if the task envisioned by the KAL proposed may be handled by the newly formed Union of the Association of Korean-Americans. Mr. Moo-Jae Pak responded by saying that as he understood the conceptual framework of the KAL as proposed, there is no need to concern ourselves with the representation issue. He also pointed out the fact that the main missions of the most of the Association of Korean-Americans are not forward looking, as such the organization is not likely at all to be able to assume the unique role envisioned for the proposed KAL.

Prof. Daniel B.D. Lee, of the Loyola University, agreed strongly with the emphasis the KAL places on the necessity to bring in as many qualified 1.5 and 2.0 KA’s as possible, and observed the fact that their presence in the main stream American journalism including various different media is becoming rather pronounced.

Mr. Jay Kim commented on the organization’s abbreviation, the KAL, being reminiscent of a certain airline company. It was quickly pointed out by others that the company in question is no longer identified as KAL. Dr.Pak took the floor at this point and gave a brief review on the various ethnic organizations in this country with similar objectives; the Japanese-American Citizens League(Est. 1929), Jewish Defense League, Arab-American League and Chinese-American Association. He concluded his review by saying that although the organizational objectives are varied as the number of organizations, they can be generically grouped together, and as such, the title of the organization proposed, the Korean-American League as simple as it may sound, actually represents the objectives well in the context of the existing other ethnic organizations.

The second session of the meeting was mainly devoted to the presentation by Rev. Yoon on his "Healing and Reconciliation" mission.

The third and the last session of the meeting held on the Saturday morning saw some new participants and Dr. Pak had filled them in on the gist content of the discussions that took place the night before. Mr. Michael Cho, a 2.0 KA, and an attorney working as one of the Cook County prosecutors, when asked to review the possible task of formulating the KAL By-Laws, demanded that the floor be open for a renewed discussion on the Mission Statement of the KAL. For the task, Rev. Yoon suggested that the group divide into multiple smaller subgroups for the ease of quick consensus formation on the Mission Statement (or Objectives, as stated in the Conceptual Frame-Work of the KAL as proposed by Dr. Pak). Dr. Pak accepted the suggestion and after a brief break the smaller subgroups were formed for more intimate discussion.

The main meeting resumed by calling upon each subgroup-leader to report their findings to the main body. The following represents the summary of the reports;

  1. The Mission of the KAL must be broadly stated.
  2. An educational modality might be developed by the KAL oriented to the 1.5 and 2.0 KA’s, with special emphasis on the objective of enhancing their identity, self-consciousness, and awareness of their tie with the Korean peninsula, historically and emotionally.
  3. The importance of maintaining a strict political neutrality as it relates to the political reality existing in the Korean peninsula needs to be clearly spelled out in the organizational objective.
  4. The Mission should also include a statement that clearly indicates that the KAL activities are strongly conducive to the maintenance of peace and security of the Northeast Asia, the U.S.A. and the world as a whole.

This was followed by a series of suggestions by the group to Dr. Pak, in an effort to forge ahead toward the direction of actual formation of the KAL:

  1. Formulate a detailed plan for the next meeting, ie East Coast Meeting.
  2. Compile a list of Korean-American Journalists with assistance from Prof. Daniel B.D.Lee.
  3. Compile a list of Korean-American business persons, from whom we may identify leadership for the KAL Foundation.
  4. Begin drafting the KAL By-Law
  5. Plan a media event that will draw attention of the main-stream news-media in conjunction with the announcement of the formation of the KAL, ie. non-confrontational, cooperative debate between SK and NK ambassadors to U.N.

 

The meeting was adjourned with many encouraging comments from nearly all the participants.

Respectfully submitted by

Moon J.Pak, M.D., Ph.D.