400 Celebrate Opening of Asia Society Korea Center

Current and former South Korean Prime Ministers Han Seung-soo (L) and Lee Hong-koo (R) arrive at the Asia Society Korea Center Inaugural Gala in Seoul, April 2, 2008. (Asia Society Korea)
Current and former South Korean Prime Ministers Han Seung-soo (L) and Lee Hong-koo (R) arrive at the Asia Society Korea Center Inaugural Gala in Seoul, April 2, 2008. (Asia Society Korea)

SEOUL, April 2, 2008 - Asia Society celebrated the opening of its eleventh global center in Seoul, South Korea, at a gala event attended by 400 guests, including Korean leaders in the political, business, and cultural spheres as well as key figures from Seoul's international community.

South Korean Prime Minister Han Seung-soo presented the keynote address, and former South Korean Prime Minister Lee Hong-koo delivered a congratulatory speech on the Korea Center's opening. During dinner, US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and Pacific Affairs Christopher Hill offered his thoughts on America's relationship with South Korea and the Asia-Pacific region, and was followed by US Ambassador to Seoul Alexander Vershbow’s speech on the shared interests between the US and South Korea.

Nearly two years in the planning, the Asia Society Korea Center will actively engage with issues affecting Korea, the Asia-Pacific region, and US-Asia ties. The Center's programs will address technology, policy, business, and education, as well as arts and culture, and integrate Korean voices into the broad range of Asia Society programs across the region.

The center’s leadership brings together individuals from across the public and private sectors. Former Prime Minister Lee Hong-koo, who recently joined the Asia Society Global Board of Trustees, is the Korea Center's Honorary Chairman. Kyongsoo Lho, professor of International Politics at Seoul National University, serves as Co-Chair with Lotte Corporation Vice Chairman Shin Dong-Bin. Joseph Cabuay, an Adjunct Professor of International Affairs at Hanyang University and the former Vice President of International Business Development for the New York City Economic Development Corporation, serves as the Executive Director.