The Department sadly notes the passing of Professor Emeritus Chonghan Kim, who died on Saturday, April 7, 2007.
In nearly three decades at the College, Professor Kim distinguished himself as a teacher and scholar. Throughout his life, he was also active in the Korean-American community. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Chonghan Kim was born in Korea in 1923. His initial studies took place in his home country as well as in Japan. He came to the United States in 1948, to study at the University of Indiana, from which he would receive his Bachelors, Masters and PhD. After teaching at Marquette University from 1957 to 1961, he joined the foreign service of South Korea in 1960, serving as special assistant to that country’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Charge d-Affaires at its mission in Uganda, and Director of the Foreign Ministry’s Bureau of International Relations.
Professor Kim joined the Government Department at the College of William and Mary in 1964, and was promoted to the rank of full Professor in 1970. During his time here, he taught courses in International Relations, with a focus on International Organization, International Law, and East Asia.
Throughout his career, Professor Kim’s major scholarly interest was the politics of Korean reunification. His works appeared in journals like Orbis and The Journal of Asiatic Studies. In 1984, he co-edited a book entitled Korean Unification: New Perspectives and Approaches. During his academic career, he was a regular participant at conferences and symposia on this issue, as well as Korean-American relations, Korean foreign policy and the People’s Republic of China.
In addition to serving on groups such as the Advisory Council for a Peaceful Unification Policy, Professor Kim was the first President of the Korean Association of the Virginia Peninsula Area and actively involved in the life of the regional Korean and Korean-American communities, including after his retirement from teaching in 1992.
Professor Kim is survived by his wife Taehee and three children. The family requests that memorial contributions be made to the Open Door Korean United Methodist Church, 128 Deal Drive, Newport News VA 23608.