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The Young Oak Kim Center for Korean American Studies
at University of California, Riverside
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About the YOK Center Director


Professor of Ethnic Studies and Director of the Young Oak Kim Center for Korean American Studies at UC Riverside Edward Taehan Chang has been the voice of the Korean American community for more than twenty years. He has been interviewed on CNN, VH1, various Korean media outlets that include the Korea Daily and various radio shows. He is also the co-author of the book Korean American Pioneer Aviators: The Willows Airmen published by Lexington Books, May 2015.

A prolific researcher, Prof. Chang has published numerous works. He has translated the book Unsung Hero: The Story of Col. Young Oak Kim, originaly published in Korea by Woo Sung Han. Prof. Chang is also working on a book about the Korean aviation school in Willows, California. Prof. Chang earned his doctorate degree from UC Berkeley and has dedicated his life as an educator and researcher for the betterment for the Korean American community.

Prof. Chang is a leading expert on the 1992 Los Angeles Riots, race relations and Korean Americans. He has long been the voice of the Korean community and has written, spoken, and been interviewed prolifically about the LA Riots over the last 20 years.

As part of his efforts to raise the Korean American voice and bridge cultural gaps, Prof. Chang organized the event "Hope out of Crisis: Lessons from Sa-i-gu” in Los Angeles at the Garden Suite Hotel on April 28, 2012. He also worked with students at UC Riverside and organized the “Riots, Uprising and Unfinished Business” event on April 25, 2012.

Prof. Chang was quoted widely in the press on issues relating to the LA Riots and its aftermath. He served as a field reporter and consultant for LA is Burning: Five Reports from a Divided City, a PBS Frontline special program on the six-day civil unrest.

Professor Chang received "President's Award" from the President of the Republic of Korea for his efforts leading a national campaign to gain support and raise funds for the development and institutionalization of an achievement test (SAT II) on the Korean language for high school students seeking college admission in 1995.

Chang also received numerous awards including the "John Anson Ford Award" from the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission (1995), "Education Award" from the Asian American Studies Center at UCLA (1995), "Global Korea Award" from the Michigan State University (1995), and "Distinguished Korean American Award" from the SUNY at Stony Brook. He was also conferred a Certificate of Appreciation from the Korean American Adoptee-Adoptive Family Network (2000).

Edward Taehan Chang earned his B.A. (1982) in Sociology and Ph.D. (1990) in Ethnic Studies at UC Berkeley and an M.A. (1984) in Asian American Studies at UCLA.

He is an author of four books, four edited volumes, and numerous articles. His latest book is the translation of Korean book titled Unsung Hero: The Story of Col. Young Oak Kim published by the YOK Center at UC Riverside. He also authored the book (1999) "Ethnic Peace in the American City: Community Building in Los Angeles and Beyond," (with Jeannette Diaz-Veizades) and "Following the Footsteps of Korean Americans," “Asian American,” and "Who African Americans Are."