|The late Cho Chang-soo.|
(Overseas Korean Cultural Heritage Foundation)
Ex-Smithsonian curator Cho Chang-soo has been posthumously awarded the Okgwan Order of Cultural Merit, one of the highest cultural honors in South Korea.
Cho died at age 83 in 2009 after dedicating the majority of her life to introducing Korean history to the American public.
She began working in the anthropology department of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in 1965 as a museum specialist in Asian ethnology. She later joined the Asian Cultural History Program at the Smithsonian where she played a pivotal role in returning 93 items of historic value held by the museum to Korea, including the seals of Emperors Gojong and Sunjong.
Cho played a central role in the opening of a Korean Exhibition Hall at the Smithsonian in 2007.
Among the other recipients for the Order of Cultural Merit, head of Gangneung Seongyojang Lee Kang-baek was awarded the Eungwan Order of Cultural Merit, and Korea University professor emeritus Yoon Sae-young was presented the Bogwan Order of Cultural Merit.
The awards ceremony for the Order of Cultural Merit will take place Dec. 10 at the National Palace Museum of Korea in Seoul.
By Cha Yo-rim (firstname.lastname@example.org