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[Press Release] NAKASEC Announces New Executive Director

By June 29, 2011 No Comments
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For Immediate Release
June 29, 2011

Contact:
Jane Yoo, jyoo@nakasec.org, 202-299-9540

NAKASEC Announces New Executive Director

Washington D.C. – Following an extensive search, the Board of Directors of the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) is pleased to announce the selection of Morna Ha as Executive Director beginning June 29, 2011.

Ms. Ha comes to us with invaluable experience in both grassroots organizing and policy advocacy. She first got involved with community activism as a high school intern with NAKASEC working on issues impacting Korean Americans including immigration, civic engagement and an array of civil rights issues including voting rights and hate crimes. Ms. Ha later served as NAKASEC’s Program Associate and then as the National Organizing Coordinator executing campaigns and developing community leadership around the DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform. Most recently, Ms. Ha was the 2010-2011 Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies Legislative Fellow in the office of Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-32). She also has had broad-based experience in local city government, most notably with the New York City Mayor’s Office of Operations, as well as with local communities in the Mississippi Delta and New Orleans, Louisiana. Ms. Ha received a Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and a Bachelor’s Degree from Dartmouth College. She is originally from Queens, New York.

“This is a challenging time for the immigrant community, but Ms. Ha understands the importance of building a movement from the local to the national. She will serve as a strong advocate of our issues and carry the voices of Korean Americans to Washington D.C.,” said Dae Joong Yoon, Executive Director of the Korean Resource Center in Los Angeles.

“NAKASEC and its affiliate centers are looking forward to growing our organizations and building a broader progressive movement together in a manner that reflects the 17 years of NAKASEC’s rich history and commitment to the grassroots,” added Sik Son, Executive Director of the Korean American Resource & Cultural Center in Chicago.

“We are excited to have Ms. Ha rejoin as our Executive Director. She not only has a clear record and demonstrated commitment to grassroots organizing, but she also brings a broad range of policy skills and experience from the local, state and national levels. Ms. Ha is well prepared to continue positioning NAKASEC in its unique role as a national organization combining organizing, services, advocacy and education,” said Julie Kil Joo Lee, Board Chair of NAKASEC.

Joining Ms. Ha in a leadership capacity is Jane Yoo who will transition her role to Deputy Director. Ms. Yoo served 6 years in a program and communications capacity within NAKASEC and its affiliate network. She was instrumental in NAKASEC’s first involvement with youth organizing on the DREAM Act nearly a decade ago and has developed extensive field experience on issues related to immigration reform and voter empowerment. Ms. Yoo also cultivated a specialty in communications working in a progressive public relations firm where she was charged with developing strategies, messaging and social media campaigns for non-profits and placing their leaders and spokespeople in major media outlets.

NAKASEC is supported by a 17-member board whose Executive Committee consists of:

Julie Kil Joo Lee, Board Chair; Inhe Choi and Nanwon Kim, Vice-Chairs; Je Yon Jung, Secretary; Becky Belcore, Treasurer.

 

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The National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) was founded in 1994 by local community centers to project a national progressive voice and promote the full participation of Korean Americans as a part of a greater goal of building a national movement for social change. NAKASEC is based in Los Angeles, with an office in Washington D.C.  NAKASEC affiliates are in Los Angeles (Korean Resource Center) and in Chicago (Korean American Resource & Cultural Center).