President Park Geun-hye nominated Kim Jong-deok, a visual design professor at Hongik University, as the new culture minister, officials said Sunday.
Along with Kim, Park appointed Kim Young-seok, presidential secretary for maritime and fisheries, vice maritime minister.
The announcement was made nearly three weeks after Chung Sung-keun, a former TV news anchor, withdrew his nomination for the culture minister post. He was accused of having a drunk driving record and other ethical misdeeds.
The nomination put an end to the Cabinet reshuffle that started in June in efforts to tighten Park’s grip on state management, which was affected by the ferry disaster in April.
Park launched her new Cabinet last month without naming a new nominee for the culture minister post to prevent further delay in her reform drive.
Kim, 57 and an award-winning graphic designer, served as president of the Korean Society of Design Science between 2010 and 2011.
“Kim was tapped not only because of his rich experience and expertise, but also because of his outstanding leadership and sense of the field,” said presidential spokesman Min Kyung-wook. The nominee is expected to boost the nation’s cultural prosperity, one of Park’s state agendas, he added.
After the nomination, the culture minister-designate must go through a parliamentary confirmation hearing.
The process is mostly customary as National Assembly approval is not needed for Cabinet members, except for prime minister, to take the post.
By Cho Chung-un (firstname.lastname@example.org)