The Korematsu Lecture provides a forum to address Asian American perspectives on the law and to honor Asian Americans who have substantially contributed to the development of the law while challenging the status quo. This year's special guest is Byung J. "BJay" Pak, the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. In his lecture, entitled “The Road Less Taken: Building a Purpose-Driven, Satisfying Career Through Service," Mr. Pak will reflect on his incredible journey as a public servant and speak to his experiences as the state's first Asian American United States Attorney and first Korean American legislator.
Mr. Pak was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on September 28, 2017, as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. He returned to the office, having served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division from 2002 to 2008, during which time he was a member of the Narcotics and OCDETF Section and the Economic Crimes Section.
From January 2011 to January 2017, Mr. Pak served in the Georgia General Assembly as a State Representative. He served three terms and voluntarily retired in January 2017. As a State Representative, Mr. Pak served as a Deputy Majority Whip, as the Vice Chair of the Judiciary Non-Civil Committee, as the Chair of the Subcommittee on Crimes Against Person, Property, and Public Administration, as the Secretary of the Code Revision Committee, and as a member of the Health and Human Services and the Ways and Means Committees. For his policy work, Mr. Pak won recognition from numerous organizations and was chosen by James Magazine for its "Most Influential Legislators" list.
Previously, Mr. Pak was a partner with Chalmers Pak Burch & Adams LLC handling complex civil litigation and white collar investigation and prosecution matters. Mr. Pak also served as a member of Georgia Governor Nathan Deal’s Judicial Nominating Commission and the Criminal Justice Reform Council. He was appointed by the Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia as a member of the U.S. Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel and was appointed by the Justices of the Georgia Supreme Court as a member of the Georgia Commission on Interpreters.
Mr. Pak has received numerous awards throughout his career. He has been consistently recognized by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business and named as a "Super Lawyer" by Atlanta Magazine. He has been chosen as one of the Most Influential Georgians by James Magazine and Power 100 Most Influential Atlantans by the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Honored as one of the Best Lawyers Under 40 by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, Mr. Pak was also named one of "13 Georgia Lawyers Under 40 to Watch" by the Fulton County Daily Report and 25 Most Influential Asian Americans in Georgia by Georgia Asian Times. He was included in "40 under 40: Georgia's Best and the Brightest" by Georgia Trend Magazine and named “Role Model of the Year 2013” by News & Post. In 2016, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta honored Mr. Pak with its Lifetime Achievement Award, and, in 2017, he received the New American Hero Award from the American Korean Friendship Society. In 2018, the Organization of Chinese Americans–Atlanta awarded him its Distinguished Achievement Award.
This year’s Korematsu Lecture will be held on February 25th, 2019 at 6:00 p.m., D'Agostino, Lipton Hall. To register for the event please click here. Please contact Janice Yoon, email@example.com, and Kevin Tanaka, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.