The idea of forming an organization for Korean-American (KA) prosecutors began in mid-1990’s. Several KA prosecutors in Los Angeles, California discussed this informally; however, the lack of potential members failed to produce any action, other than to warrant future exploration. In early 2009, this issue was revisited by a group of KA prosecutors in the County of Los Angeles, led by Jerry Baik, Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office. An exploration committee was formed, including KA prosecutors from the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, U.S. Attorney’s Office, California-Central District, and Mr. Kyung Hwan Cha, Korean Senior Prosecutor (assigned as legal áttache for Korean Consulate General for the Republic of Korea in Los Angeles) from the Republic of Korea, Supreme Prosecutors’ Office, Prosecution Service Division.
During a dinner meeting in Koreatown, Los Angeles, a committee decided to formally establish the framework for the Korean Prosecutors Association. Jerry Baik (Deputy City Attorney, Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office) was selected as its first President followed by Ann H. Park (Deputy District Attorney, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office) as its first Vice-President. Thereafter, a formal Board of Directors were selected and two additional Executive Officers were selected, William “Billy” Shin (Deputy Attorney General, California Attorney General’s Office) as Secretary and Joon Kim (Deputy City Prosecutor, Pasadena City Attorney) as Treasurer.
On August 28, 2010, the Korean Prosecutors Association (KPA) held its Inaugural Dinner Reception hosted by the Hon. Jae-Soo Kim, Korean Consul General in Los Angeles, California. Over 100 people attended to lend their support for the formation of KPA, an organization representing over 70 KA prosecutors in the Los Angeles County. A number of key dignitaries were present to acknowledge the Association, including but not limited to: Hon. Jae-Soo Kim, Korean Consul General in Los Angeles; Hon. John Chiang, California State Controller; Hon. André Birotte, Jr., U.S. Attorney, Central District of California; Hon. Carmen A. Trutanich, Los Angeles City Attorney; Hon. Mark Kim, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge; Hon. Tammy Ryu-Chung, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge; Hon. Lisa Chung, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge; Hon. Carlos Chung, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge; California Asian Peace Officers Association; Society of Korean American Law Enforcement; Mario Trujillo, President of the Latino Prosecutor’s Association; and Mr. Woo Jung Shim, Korean Senior Prosecutor (assigned as legal áttache for Korean Consul General-Los Angeles) from the Republic of Korea, Supreme Prosecutors’ Office, Prosecution Service Division. Mr. Cha’s assignment in Los Angeles ended and was replaced by Mr. Shim. This Reception was covered by various Korean media outlets.
In early January 2011, two new board members joined the Association: Beong-Seo Kim (Chief of Major Frauds Section, U.S. Attorney’s Office-Central District of California) and Irene Lee (Deputy District Attorney, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office).