Chairman of the Board
Thomas Barker is a chair of administrative law department at Foley Hoag LLP. Thomas focuses his practice on complex federal and state health care legal and regulatory matters with a special expertise in Medicare and Medicaid law and regulations and the regulatory implementation of the federal health care reform law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Thomas also provides pro-bono services on behalf of support organizations representing North Korean refugees living in the United States and Seoul, South Korea. He specializes in helping refugees who are in need of health care.
Dan Aum is a human rights lawyer with specializations in international human rights law, foreign policy, and U.S.-Korean Peninsula relations. He has spoken at various venues on North Korean human rights, including at the National Press Club and universities, as well as being published and quoted in media outlets. He holds a juris doctorate from George Washington Law School and graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from Baylor University.
Director of Translation Department
Andrew Hong is an economic consultant based in downtown Chicago with a passion for serving North Korean refugees. He is the founder and president of ENoK, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in Chicago area with a mission to emancipate, embrace, and empower North Koreans. Mr. Hong currently resides with five North Korean refugees whom ENoK is providing academic services, including English as Second Language (ESL), General Education Development (GED), and college preparation. Through his work at ENoK and NKinUSA, Mr. Hong has been heavily involved in human rights advocacy for North Koreans and social issues surrounding North Korean defectors as well as the reunification of the Korean peninsula. He holds a B.A. degree in economics from the University of Chicago. He was born and spent his childhood in Seoul, South Korea.
Jason West, Esq.
Jason West is an attorney living in Washington, DC. He practices corporate law and is pursuing a Masters of International Law at the George Washington University Law School. He is a past participant in the Oxford University International Human Rights Law Programme. Mr. West works on North Korean Human Rights with many organizations. He is Vice Chairman of the North Korea Freedom Coalition (NKFC), Founder and Graduate Co-President of GW THiNK (Truth and Human Rights in North Korea), and Founder of the North Korea Network. He has been a volunteer and supporter of NKinUSA for many years.
Grace Jo was born in North Korea, a place where she almost starved to death as a child. Two of Grace’s brothers died of starvation. Grace’s father was tortured and starved to death. He passed away when North Korean agents transferred him from a detention center to a jail. His “crime” was that he left his country in search of food for his family. One of Grace’s older sisters went to China to find food for her family, but went missing and was probably sold into human trafficking. Grace was repatriated twice to North Korea by the Chinese government, and suffered imprisonment after she was repatriated. Grace’s mother and one of Grace’s sisters were repatriated four times and suffered torture after repatriation. In 2006 Pastor Philip Buck bribed North Korean agents to let Grace and her two remaining family members escape North Korea. In 2008, the UNHCR rescued Grace and her family from China, and enabled them to enter the United States of America as legal refugees. Grace is one of 180 refugees from North Korea who have settled in the U.S. Currently, Grace lives outside of Washington D.C. In 2013, Grace became a U.S. citizen. Alongside her family, she has protested the forced repatriation of North Korean escapees hiding out in China. In addition to being a human rights activist, Grace dreams of going to law school to study international law for the purpose of helping North Korean defectors. Grace works as a DCA (Dental Certified Assistant) to earn a living, and she attends classes at the Northern Virginia Community College to reach her academic goals. Grace is also a Vice-President of a non-profit organization NKinUSA, which helps North Korean refugees in the United States and China. Grace was a guest of U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power at the UN Security Council session on NK human rights.
Jinhye Jo is the President and Founder of NKinUSA. For more information about her, please click here.