[NYT] Venerable Korean American group in New York descends into chaos

May 26, 2015

 

On May 1, Mrs. Kim's inauguration ceremony unfolded on the Chelsea sidewalk, against a backdrop of seven grand floral arrangements. (Cho Jin-woo/The Korea Times)

On May 1, Mrs. Kim’s inauguration ceremony unfolded on the Chelsea sidewalk, against a backdrop of seven grand floral arrangements. (Cho Jin-woo/The Korea Times)

[NEW YORK TIMES]

Should you happen to meet the president of the Korean American Association of Greater New York this spring, you might find yourself speaking with a 60-year-old Korean man named Min Sung-ki Then again, you might instead find yourself talking with a 54-year-old woman named Kim Min-sun.

Both will introduce themselves with unwavering self-confidence as the one and only president of the association. Both will insist that the other is a total impostor. Neither is happy with the situation.

“I feel uncomfortable,” Mrs. Kim acknowledged.

“We have a little problem to solve,” Mr. Min asserted.

Such is the disarray that has befallen the once-venerable institution, one of the oldest groups in the region’s Korean community. Founded in 1960, the association for years helped new Korean immigrants integrate with American society. But its importance to the community has waned considerably, and the group now appears to serve a largely ceremonial function in support of its president, an unpaid elected post.

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