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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 4, 2016
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Garry South (310) 600-9001
PASTOR OF LARGEST OC AFRICAN AMERICAN CHURCH SUPPORTS KANG
Rev. Mark Whitlock of Christ Our Redeemer A.M.E Church Calls Sukhee Kang a “Man of Faith and a Man of Principles”
IRVINE – Sukhee Kang, Democratic candidate in the open 29th Senate District, today picked up the support of the pastor of the largest African American church in Orange County, the Rev. Mark E. Whitlock, Jr.
“I have known Sukhee Kang for many years,” Whitlock, pastor of Christ Our Redeemer A.M.E. church, said, “and I know him to be a man of faith and a man of principles. Sukhee will serve Orange County very well in the state Senate, and will bring an enormous amount of experience to Sacramento, along with his inspiring life story and compassion for people. Sukhee Kang represents the sort of rock-solid character that we ought to see in more of our elected officials.”
“I am delighted and honored to win the endorsement of Pastor Whitlock,” Kang said. “He is a great example for our African American youth, and Christ Our Redeemer Church is a beacon of hope and uplift for thousands in Orange County. I have thoroughly enjoyed my long-time friendship with Pastor Whitlock, and I look forward to continuing our relationship when I am in the Senate.”
Whitlock has served as pastor of Christ Our Redeemer A.M.E. church, based in Irvine, since 1998. Prior to that, he was founder and executive director of FAME Renaissance, the economic development arm of the well-known First A.M.E. Church in Los Angeles. Whitlock is also director of community initiatives at the University of Southern California’s Center for Religion and Civic Culture, and a board member of Harvard Divinity School’s Summer Leadership Institute. A graduate of the University of Laverne, he also attended Payne Theological Seminary and is a candidate to graduate with a masters in social entrepreneurship from USC in May. Whitlock lectures widely on subjects of faith and community, and has received numerous national, state and city service awards.
Kang was a two-term city councilmember in Irvine, as well as a two-term mayor of the city, reelected overwhelmingly in 2010 with more than 64 percent of the vote. He and his wife Joanne, also a South Korean native who immigrated to the U.S. with him in 1977, have been residents of Orange County for 39 years and now live in Fullerton.
Kang announced his candidacy for the open 29th Senate District on April 22, 2015, the first Democrat to do so, and has since picked up dozens of endorsements from state and local officials and community leaders throughout Orange, Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties. The district is currently represented by former Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff, who cannot run again due to term limits.
Kang has been recognized numerous times for his outstanding public service and community leadership, including receiving the American Diabetes Association’s “Orange County Father of the Year Award” in 2012, the Carnegie Corporation’s “Pride of America” award in 2010, and the International Leadership Foundation’s “Public Servant of the Year” award in 2010. The Irvine Chamber of Commerce also recognized Kang in 2010 as “Business Leader of the Year” – a rare honor for an elected official.
A veteran, Kang served in the South Korean Army, then graduated from the prestigious Korea University with a degree in agricultural economics, and in 2011 was awarded an honorary doctorate from Dongseo University in Busan, Korea. He also has served as special advisor to the chancellor of UC Irvine, and as an adjunct professor and Chancellor Fellow at Chapman University.
The Kang children, Alan, 35, and Angie, 33, attended public schools in Anaheim, where the Kang family lived for 10 years. Alan, a graduate of USC's Marshall School of Business, is a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers, Angie, a graduate of Berkeley Law School (Boalt Hall), is senior counsel at Hulu.
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