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[TIMELINE] Recognition of Korean's 100th Anniversary of Immigration

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  • madchinaman
    Information on the Centennial Committee, the legislation and the Centennial s Board of Advisors The Centennial Committee of Korean Immigration to the United
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 31, 2002
      Information on the Centennial Committee, the legislation and the
      Centennial's Board of Advisors

      The Centennial Committee of
      Korean Immigration to the United States


      On April 30, 1999, more than a dozen people representing various
      sectors of the Korean community in Hawaii met to form the Centennial
      Committee of Korean Immigration to the United States. As the place
      where the first immigrants from Korea made landfall, Hawaii would
      clearly play an important role in any centennial celebrations.
      Official celebrations marking the centennial of Korean immigration to
      the United States will commence on January 13, 2003, a century to the
      day after the first Korean immigrants landed in Honolulu Harbor.
      Events leading up to the anniversary year of 2003, and sponsored by
      the Centennial Committee, will take place as early as summer 2000 and
      will include, to name but a few, essay contests, calligraphy
      exhibits, dance performances, and academic conferences.

      The primary objective of the Centennial Committee of Korean
      Immigration to the United States is to plan, organize, fund, and
      publicize the celebratory activities marking the 100th anniversary of
      Korean immigration. To that end, the Committee has been organized
      into various subcommittees, each led by a chairperson and charged
      with focusing on a certain aspect of the centennial celebrations. The
      subcommittees include fundraising, public relations, academics, and
      cultural events. In the course of organizing such events, often
      involving international fundraising and cultural and educational
      exchanges, the Committee hopes to contribute to improving long-range
      relations between the United States and Korea.

      The Centennial Committee of Korean Immigration to the United States
      had its genesis in a similar committee organized in 1993 to recognize
      and celebrate the 90th anniversary of Korean immigration to the
      United States. Many of the experienced members of that group carried
      over to the current committee. The Committee includes all elements
      involved in the Korean community and is not limited merely to those
      of Korean ethnicity.

      State of Hawaii Bill No. 2262, signed by Governor Benjamin J.
      Cayetano on June 15, 2000, established the Korean Centennial
      Celebration Commission. This commission, composed of fifteen members
      appointed by the governor (many of whom will also sit on the
      Committee), will form an official link between the Committee and the
      Hawaii state government, the source of some funding for the
      centennial celebration. The organizing and planning group, however,
      will continue to be the Centennial Committee of Korean Immigration to
      the United States.

      The Committee will continue to hold monthly organizational meetings
      through the 2003 celebration year. These meetings are held at 6 p.m.
      on every first Monday of the month at the Center for Korean Studies
      on the University of Hawaii campus and are open to the public


      WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. House of Representatives must be intent
      on keeping up with the Joneses - well, at least, with the Senators.
      It passed Concurrent Resolution 297 on Sept. 25 that recognizes the
      significance of the upcoming 100th anniversary of Korean immigration
      to America, similar to a resolution the Senate passed in June.

      Sponsored by representatives Peter Hoekstra (R-MI), Tom Davis (R-VA)
      and a bipartisan coalition of 30 House members, the resolution
      acknowledges the contributions and achievements of KAs over the past
      century. It also asks that the president issue a proclamation that
      U.S. citizens observe the centennial with appropriate ceremonies and

      "Korean Americans have made many contributions to the United States
      and have had a lasting impact on their communities," stated
      Davis. "Hard work, strong families and cultural influence are just a
      few of the qualities that Korean Americans are known for, and
      continue to thrive today."


      House Resolution Honors 100 Years of Korean Immigration to U.S.
      (H. Con. Res. 297 passed September 25 in 417-0 vote)
      The House of Representatives passed a resolution September 25
      honoring 100 years of Korean immigration to the United States.

      House Concurrent Resolution 297 (H. Con. Res. 297) passed the House
      in a 417-0 vote.

      Representative Peter Hoekstra (Republican of Michigan) introduced the
      measure to the House in December of last year. The resolution had 32

      H. Con. Res. 297 notes that the first group of Korean immigrants left
      Korea for the United States in December, 1902.

      The resolution recognizes the contributions made by Korean immigrants
      to the United States and recalls the shared effort of South Korea and
      the United States to oppose communist aggression.

      "Korean-Americans, like waves of immigrants that came to the United
      States before them, have taken root and thrived in the United States
      through strong family ties, community support, and hard work," the
      resolution says.

      Korean immigrants, it adds, have "invigorated businesses, churches,
      and academic communities in the United States."

      Following is the text of House Concurrent Resolution 297 from the
      Congressional Record:

      Recognizing the historical significance of 100 years of Korean
      immigration to the United States.

      Introduced in House
      HCON 297 IH
      107th CONGRESS
      1st Session

      H. CON. RES. 297

      Recognizing the historical significance of 100 years of Korean
      immigration to the United States.


      December 20, 2001

      Mr. HOEKSTRA (for himself and Mr. TOM DAVIS of Virginia) submitted
      the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the
      Committee on Government Reform


      Recognizing the historical significance of 100 years of Korean
      immigration to the United States.

      Whereas missionaries from the United States played a central role in
      nurturing the political and religious evolution of modern Korea;

      Whereas in December 1902, 56 men, 21 women and 25 children left Korea
      and traveled across the Pacific Ocean on the S.S. Gaelic and landed
      in Honolulu, Hawaii on January 13, 1903;

      Whereas the early Korean-American community was united around the
      common goal of obtaining independence from their colonized mother

      Whereas members of the Korean-American community have served with
      distinction in the Armed Forces of the United States during World War
      I, World War II, and the Korean Conflict;

      Whereas on June 25, 1950, Communist North Korea invaded South Korea
      with approximately 135,000 troops, thereby initiating the involvement
      of approximately 5,720,000 personnel, both military and civilian from
      South Korea and the United States, who worked to stem the spread of
      communism in Korea;

      Whereas casualties in the United States Armed Forces included 54,260
      dead, of whom 33,665 were battle deaths, 92,134 wounded, and 8,176
      listed as missing in action or prisoners of war;

      Whereas in the early 1950s, thousands of Koreans, fleeing from war,
      poverty, and desolation, came to the United States seeking

      Whereas Korean-Americans, like waves of immigrants that came to the
      United States before them, have taken root and thrived in the United
      States through strong family ties, community support, and hard work;

      Whereas Korean immigration has invigorated businesses, churches, and
      academic communities in the United States;

      Whereas according to the 2000 United States Census, Korean-Americans
      own and operate 135,571 businesses across the United States that have
      gross sales of $46,000,000,000 annually, and employ 333,649

      Whereas the contributions of Korean-Americans to the United States
      include the development of the first beating heart operation for
      coronary artery disease, the development of several varieties of the
      nectarine, and achievements in engineering, architecture, medicine,
      acting, singing, sculpture, and writing;

      Whereas Korean-Americans play a crucial role in maintaining the
      strength and vitality of the United States-Korean relationship;

      Whereas the partnership of the United States and South Korea helps
      maintain peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region and provides
      economic benefits to the people of both nations and to the rest of
      the world; and

      Whereas beginning in 2003, more than 100 communities throughout the
      United States will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Korean
      immigration to the United States: Now, therefore, be it

      Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring),
      That the Congress--

      (1) recognizes the achievements and contributions of Korean-Americans
      to the United States over the past 100 years; and

      (2) requests that the President issue a proclamation calling on the
      people of the United States and interested organizations to observe
      the anniversary with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

      (Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs,
      U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)


      Advisory Board

      As of February 10, 2002, three celebrated Korean Americans have
      accepted invitations by part of the National Advisory Board of the
      Centennial Committee for Korean Immigration to the United States. A
      short biography is listed below.

      Col. Young Oak Kim (US Army Ret.) is one of the most decorated Asian
      American soldiers of World War II. He began his lengthy military
      career with the famed 100th Infantry Battalion which later became
      part of the larger 442nd Regimental Combat Team. He was awarded the
      Distinguished Service Cross, his first Silver Star, two Bronze Stars,
      three Purple Hearts and the French Croix de Guerre, among other
      medals, for his service in WWII. During the Korean War, Col. Kim
      became the first Asian American officer to command an American
      infantry battalion in Korean War. He earned 19 medals during his
      military career.After retirement, Col. Kim became active in community
      affairs.He chaired the 10-year effort to successfully build the "Go
      for Broke" memorial in LittleTokyo in Los Angeles and is now co-
      chairman of the Go for Broke Educational Foundation. Col. Kim
      currently resides in Las Vegas.He can be reached at the Go For Broke
      Educational Foundation, 9370 Amapola Avenue, Ste. 110, Torrance CA
      (link: www.goforbroke.org)

      Sammy Lee M.D. Dr. Lee was the first Asian American to win an Olympic
      gold medal. In 1948 Dr. Lee won both the gold in the 10-mtr. platform
      competition and the bronze medal in springboard diving at the London
      Olympics. He was the first person of color to win a gold medal in
      Four years later, he won the gold again at the Helsinki Olympics,
      becoming the first male diver to win back to back Olympic gold
      medals. He did so on his 32nd birthday, as a Major in the U. S. Army
      Medical Corps. He was inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame in
      1990. He also coached
      the U.S. Olympic Diving Team in 1960 and coached Bob Webster, who won
      Olympic gold medals in 1960 & 1964, and Greg Louganis, who won a
      silver medal at the Montreal 1976 Olympics.

      Dr. Lee ran with Olympic Torch on the eve of the 1984 L.A. Olympics
      Opening Ceremony and was one of the official Olympic Flag Bearers.
      He was also named one of the 100 Living Golden Olympians for the 1996
      Atlanta Centennial Olympic Games. And in 2001 U.S. Diving honored him
      with its Lifetime Achievement Award.

      Dr. Lee was born in Fresno, California in 1920 to Korean immigrants.
      His father had worked on a Hawaiian plantation in 1905 then went to
      Occidental Academy in 1907 and graduated in 1910. Dr. Lee was a
      student athlete at Occidental College. He has been retired from his
      private practice in otology (diseases of the ear) since 1991.

      He is currently the President of WHOSAM(who the heck is Sammy Lee),
      an organization that since 1984 has awarded $1,000.00 each to diving
      coaches and to divers or volunteers who do not smoke, do drugs, or
      drink. A Sammy Lee International Diving Award funded by Kalos
      Kagathos Foundation has been given out every 4 years since 1987 at
      the World Aquatic Championships. It is awarded to the diver or coach
      who has done more than anyone else to promote the sport of diving.

      Dr. Wendy Lee Gramm
      Director, Regulatory Studies Program &
      Distinguished Senior Fellow
      Called "the Margaret Thatcher of financial regulation" by the Wall
      Street Journal (Nov. 12, 1999 editorial), Dr. Wendy Lee Gramm holds a
      B.A. degree from Wellesley College (1966) and a Ph. D. (1971) from
      Northwestern University, both in Economics. She has an extensive
      publication record including articles in the American Economic Review
      and the Journal of Law and Economics.

      Before joining the Mercatus Center, Gramm served as Chairman of the
      U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission from 1988-1993. She was
      Administrator for Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of
      Management and Budget from 1985-1988, the Executive Director of the
      Presidential Task Force on Regulatory Relief, and Director of the
      Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Economics. Gramm was on the
      research staff of the Institute for Defense Analyses. She started her
      economics career at Texas A&M University, where she taught economics
      for over 8 years.

      She is the granddaughter of Korean immigrants who cut sugarcane in
      Hawaii. The Gramm's have two sons.

      E-mail Wendy at wgramm@... or call 703-993-4930.
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