- The International Council on Korean Studies (ICKS)
국제한국학회 (Gukje Hanguk Hakhoi)
- was found in March 1996 as a non profit and non partisan organization dedicated to the advancement of Korean studies and related academic and professional research in the field of Korean affairs in the United States as well as abroad through international conferences, seminars, publications, and other relevant activities. The Council aims to promote the significance of Korean studies and explore issues of the Korean Reunification among the professionals and the new generation of Koreans and Korean Americans.
The founding members created the ICKS by incorporating the “International Council on Korean Studies” in Virginia State Corporation Commission, and signing the first By-Laws in New York on March 1996. The Board of Directors elected Dr. Woong B. Lee as Chairman of its Board, Dr. Ilpyong J. Kim as President, and Dr. Hugo Wheegook Kim joined as Secretary General. The founding members tried to make a solid foundation of the Council in the first four years through the contribution of some thousand dollars of their own money and time. The inaugural conference was held in Arlington, Virginia in November 1996 under the theme of “Two Koreas in the World Affairs” with 28 papers and almost 200 participants, which was successful and significant. The selected conference papers were published in the inaugural issue of the International Journal of Korean Studies (IJKS or Gukje Hanguk Hakbo) in 1997, funded by the Korea Society. Despite limited resources, the leadership focused on annual conferences and journal publication through continuous funding efforts. In this period, the Council published the IJKS, one issue each year, although two annual conferences were skipped.
The leadership moved to Dr. Ung Soo Kim as Chairman of the Board of Directors; Dr. Hang Yul Rhee as Presiden t; Dr. Eui Hang Shin, Dr. Hugo Kim, and Dr. Soon Paik as Vice Presidents. Chairman Kim and President Rhee established and pursued three goals during their tenure: more commitment with Korea American society, financial independence, and a five year plan for conferences. The Council revised and passed new By-Laws with ten Articles at the Annual Meeting of the Board of Directors in Annandale, Virginia in June 2000. In this stage, the number of the Board of Directors increased to twenty eight, and activities to recruit memberships and to raise funds were visible. The ICKS Website appeared in 2000 owing to efforts of Secretary General Ms. Julie JK Park with the help of Mr. Anthony Chang as webmaster. After two-year service of Chairman Kim, Dr. Youn-Suk Kim succeeded the chairmanship, while President Rhee continued his second term of presidency. The Council held annual conferences under the themes of “The Korean War after Fifty Years: Challenges for Peace and Prosperity” in 2001, “The Korean Americans: Past, Present, and Future” in 2002, “U.S.-Korea Alliance: Continuity and Change” in 2003, and “The Impact of the 2004 U.S. and Korean Elections on their Politics, Economics, and Societies” in 2004. Dr. Hong Nack Kim served as Editor-in-Chief and published one issue in a year but two issues in 2001.
The leadership moved to Dr. Hang Yul Rhee as Chairman of the Board of Directors, Dr. Hong Nack Kim as President, Dr. Soon Paik and Dr. Hugo Wheegook Kim (joined in the second term) as Vice Presidents, and Dr. Richard T. Shin and Dr. Kwang Soo Cheong as Secretary General. In this period, the annual conferences were held with the themes of “Korea and Major Powers: The Quest for a Nuclear-Free Korea” in 2005, and “The U.S.-Korea Relations in the Twenty-First Century: Challenges and Prospects” in 2006 in Washington. In 2007, the ICKS held its annual conference under the theme of “Impending Changes on the Korean Peninsula and the Future of U.S.-Korean Relations” in Hawaii jointly with the East West Center. In 2008, the ICKS had a joint conference with the Heritage Foundation and the Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies in Washington. Dr. Young Whan Kihl served the IJKS as the Editor-in-chief, and published two issues of IJKS during 2005-2007.
The Board of Directors’ Meeting was held at the Phoenix Park Hotel in Washington just after the annual conference in October 2008, by which the leadership was transferred to Dr. Hong Nack Kim as Chairman of the Board of Directors; Dr. Soon Paik as President; Dr. Jae O. Kang and Dr. Richard T. Shin as Vice Presidents; Dr. Kwang Soo Cheong as Secretary General, and Dr. Gwanhoo Lee as Treasurer. Dr. Hugo Wheegook Kim serves the IJKS as Editors-in-Chief. President Paik some young scholars on the field of the Korean studies including Dr. Uk Heo and Dr. Terence J. Roehrig to the ICKS board. Editors-in-Chief Kim reorganized the Editorial Board as well as the Editorial Advisory Board with several new members as posted on the web. New Editors-in-Chief Kim reorganized the Editorial Board as well as the Editorial Advisory Board with several new members as posted on the web. In four years, ICKS had its annual conference at the Sigur Center for Asian Studies of GWU in 2009, at the Korean Studies Institute of USC in 2010, at the Korea Economic Institute of America in 2011, and at the Sigur Center in 2012. The two issues of IJKS was published each year as posted on the ICKS website.
After the annual conference 2012 at the Sigur Center, the Board of Directors elected Dr. Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr. as President, Dr. Richard T. Shin and Dr. Kwang Soo Shin as Vice President, and Dr. Soon Paik as Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, and agreed with that Dr. Hong Nack Kim remain in Chairman of the Board of Directors until the Nomination Committee elected a new Chairman to replace him. New President appointed Professor David S. Maxwell of Georgetown University to the new Editor-in-Chief of IJKS from the issue of Spring/Summer 2014. The ICKS Annual Conference was held jointly with the Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies in Seoul during June 26-27, 2013; and jointly with the Korea Economic Institute of America and the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea at the KEI in Washington, DC on April 17, 2014. ICKS President entrusted Reverend Hyunso Sohk of the Washington Promise Church to ICKS Webmaster by July 1, 2014, managing the ICKS website. Unfortunately, ICKS Chairman of the Board of Directors, Professor Hong Nack Kim of the West Virginia University suddenly passed away in July 2014 at his age of 82, so that Vice Chairman Dr. Soon Paik became Acting Chairman. Moreover, Dr. Young Whan Kihl, a retired professor of Ohio State University and a member of ICKS Board of Directors, passed away in December 2014 at his home at Laguna Woods, California, which was notified to ICKS by his friend several days after his death.
As the old ICKS (DC corporation) was legally expired its life, a new International Council on Korean Studies, Inc. was created in Virginia on 2/15/2015 (SCC ID: 07881535), and a new Board of Directors was formed with twenty members accepting its Articles of Incorporation and the old ICKS By-Laws. The new Board of Directors elected Dr. Soon Paik as Chairman; Dr. Jai P. Ryu as Vice Chairman; Dr. Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr. as President; and Dr. Richard T. Shin as Vice President for 2015-2016. President appointed David S. Maxwell to IJKS Editor-in-Chief and Won E. Kim to ICKS Treasurer, and Hugo W. Kim continuously remains in the Supporting Team. The ICKS Annual Conference was jointly held with the Center for Strategic Studies of the Georgetown University, the Korea Economic Institute of America, and the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea at the Georgetown University during June 24-25, 2015. The Annual Conference 2016 was jointly held with the Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies at the Georgetown University on June 29-30 under the theme of Security Challenges on the Korean Peninsula in 2016: Issues and Opportunities, cosponsored by Korea Institute for National Unification, Korea Institute for Maritime Strategy, Committee for Human Rights in North Korea, Korea Economic Institute of America, One Korea Foundation, Korea Foundation, Dong-A Ilbo, and Georgetown University. The You Tube of Conference Panels was produced by the Georgetown University. ICKS published two issues of International Journal of Korean Studies: Spring/Summer 2016 and Fall/Winter 2016, and distributed to subscribers.
The ICKS Annual Conference 2017 was held at the Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI) in DC on June 22 jointly with KEI and the Committee of Human Rights for North Korea under the theme of The Changing Situation on the Korean Peninsula: Challenges for New President in 2017. After the Conference, ICKS Board of Directors voted for its new leadership for 2017-2018 as follows: Dr. Jai P. Ryu as Chairman of Board of Directors, Dr. InHwan Oh as Vice Chairman, Dr. Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr. as President, and Mr. Greg Scarlatoiu as Vice President. Dr. Ilpyong J. Kim, the founding father of ICKS, who served President during 1996-2000, Chairman of Board of Directors 2000-2004, passed away peacefully at home on October 23, 2017 after a long struggle with Lewy Body Disease. ICKS arranged his Memorial Dinner at Woo Lae Oak, Vienna, VA on December 1, 2017 sponsored by his family. Dr. InHwan Oh, Vice Chairman of ICKS Board gave opening remarks, Dr. Hugo Kim introduced his profile with eulogy; Dr. Ke Sun Ryang, his close friend since days of Columbia University, read a page of his memory of friendship; and Dr. Hang Yul Rhee, who succeed his ICKS Presidency, gave an hour of memorial lecture on “The Strategic Choice for Korea over the conflict between US/Japan and China” and discussions were moderated by Dr. Jai P. Ryu, Chairman of ICKS Board, who gave concluding remarks of this Memorial Dinner.
History of leadership
|Period||Chairman||President||Vice Presidents||Secretary General|
|1996-1998||Woong B. Lee||Ilpyong J. Kim||Not Filled||Hugo W. Kim|
|1999-2000||Woong B. Lee||Ilpyong J. Kim||Hang Yul Rhee
Hugo W. Kim
|Julie J. K. Park|
|2001-2002||Ung Soo Kim||Hang Yul Rhee||Soon Paik
Hugo W. Kim
|2003-2004||Youn-Suk Kim||Hang Yul Rhee||Soon Paik
Hugo W. Kim
|Jae O. Kang|
|2005-2006||Hang Yul Rhee||Hong Nack Kim||Soon Paik||Richard T. Shin|
|2007-2008||Hang Yul Rhee||Hong Nack Kim||Soon Paik
Hugo W. Kim
|Kwang Soo Cheong|
|2009-2010||Hong Nack Kim||Soon Paik||Jae O. Kang
Richard T. Shin
|Kwang Soo Cheong|
|2011-2012||Hong Nack Kim||Soon Paik||Jae O. Kang
Richard T. Shin
|Kwang Soo Cheong|
|2013-2014||Hong Nack Kim||Bruce E. Bechtol||Richard T. Shin
Kwang Soo Cheong
|2015-2016||Soon Paik||Bruce E. Bechtol||Richard T. Shin||Not Appointed|
|2017-2018||Jai P. Ryu||Bruce E. Bechtol||Greg Scarlatoiu||Not Appointed|
History of leadership for annual conferences and journal publications
|Year||Conference Program Chair||Editor-in-Chief, IJKS|
|1996||Ilpyong J. Kim||No Journal|
|1997||Ilpyong J. Kim||Ilpyong J. Kim|
|1998||No Conference||Ilpyong J. Kim|
|1999||No Conference||Ilpyong J. Kim|
|2000||Hugo W. Kim||No Journal|
|2001||Hugo W. Kim||Hong Nack Kim|
|2002||Soon Paik and Hugo W. Kim||Hong Nack Kim|
|2003||Hugo W. Kim||Hong Nack Kim|
|2004||Soon Paik||Hong Nack Kim|
|2005||Soon Paik||Young Whan Kihl|
|2006||Soon Paik and Yoon-shik Park||Young Whan Kihl|
|2007||Soon Paik and Hugo W. Kim||Young Whan Kihl|
|2008||Hugo W. Kim||Young Whan Kihl|
|2009||Dr. Richard T. Shin||Hugo Wheegook Kim|
|2010||Hugo Wheegook Kim||Hugo Wheegook Kim|
|2011||Dr. Soon Paik||Hugo Wheegook Kim|
|2012||Hugo Wheegook Kim||Hugo Wheegook Kim|
|2013||Hugo Wheegook Kim||Hugo Wheegook Kim|
|2014||Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr||David S. Maxwell|
|2015||Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr||David S. Maxwell|
|2016||Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr||Tara O|
|2017||Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr||James F. Durand|