[FOCUS] Diplomacy through International Good will Activities

2017. 10. 20. 15:13

 <The man I had Met, S.R. Cho> ep. 4

Chairman Cho Suck-rai and I graduated from Kyunggi Middle School and Kyunggi High School, but it was not until 1978 when I returned home after working as a professor in the United States that I first met Chairman Cho. I have since attended many meetings related to Asia-Pacific cooperation and Korea-U.S. relations. I got to know him through many international conferences. He was engaged in many economic diplomacy activities and made strenuous efforts to establish human networks based on his proficiency in Japanese and English, as well as his winning personality and affable sociability. He played an active part in international relations, assuming many roles, including the chairman of Pacific Basin Economic Council, Korean chairman of Korea-U.S. Business Council and chairman of Korea-Japan Economic Association. Through such international meetings, I saw that many participants respected and liked him. 

In Korea, I was able to meet him many times through the Seoul Forum for International Affairs, which was launched in 1986. The Seoul Forum for International Affairs is a private organization established by scholars, businesspeople, journalists, legal professionals and cultural professionals to promote the international goodwill activities of Korea, study international issues and promote understanding. The forum has made huge contributions to Korea's diplomacy and international goodwill activities through many meetings and events over the past 30 years. Chairman Cho has worked as a board member of the forum since its establishment, guiding the development of the forum. 

In 2007 when I was an acting president of Korea University, there was an event to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the foundation of Waseda University, which is the sister School of Korea University in Tokyo. At this event, I could not help but feel proud when I saw how so many participants from the Japanese education and business worlds respected and praised Chairman Cho, who attended the event as the chairman of the Korean alumni association of Waseda University. 

In and outside international meetings, many participants respected and liked Chairman Cho Seok-rae.

(Prof. Han Seung-joo, left of Chairman Cho Seok-rae)

Our families were quite close as well. Mrs. Song Gwang-ja, the spouse of Chairman Cho, and my wife professor Lee Sung-mi are alumnus of Seoul National University College of Fine Arts although they did not study in the same department. Mrs. Song's father (Chairman Song In-sang) is a person whom I always respect as he assumed the chairmanship of the Korean-American Association, which is currently assumed by me, for several years.

Written by Han Seung-joo

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