Maryland’s First Lady will receive South Korea’s highest civilian honor

Maryland’s First Lady will receive South Korea’s highest civilian honor

Gov. Larry Hogan said first lady Yumi Hogan was instrumental in the success of the Operation Enduring Friendship. The governor made the announcement Monday afternoon on the steps of the State House in Annapolis as the flags of South Korea and Maryland billowed behind them. (screenshot)


Next week Maryland’s First Lady Yumi Hogan will be awarded the highest civilian honor of the Republic of Korea.

The First Lady was born in South Korea in 1959 and immigrated to the U.S. more than four decades ago. She will receive the Order of Civil Merit on Tuesday, November 24 at a ceremony at the Republic of Korea’s Embassy in Washington, D.C. More specifically, the First Lady will receive a Camellia (Dongbaek) Medal, which is the third class of the Order of Civil Merit.

The award is for her work bolstering U.S.-Korean relations and her outreach to the Korean-American community in Maryland. Earlier this year, Yumi Hogan secured 500,000 coronavirus testing kits for Maryland from South Korea. About 70% of the kits have already been used. Mrs. Hogan is the first Korean-American to serve as First Lady of a U.S. state.

The First Lady and Gov. Larry Hogan celebrated the news of the coming honor, which came on Thursday.

“As a first-generation Korean American and the first Korean American First Lady of any state, I have made it my mission to bring different generations of Korean Americans together, to connect Korea and Maryland, and to promote the value and beauty of Korean culture and heritage,” Mrs. Hogan said in a statement. “Our success is thanks to the many Korean Americans in Maryland who have kept our community’s legacy alive, and our partners in Korea who share special friendships with our state.”

“In Maryland, we are proud to have a special bond with Korea, and that is due in large part to the passion and dedication of my wonderful wife, Yumi,” the governor said in a statement. “She is a strong voice for the Korean American community, and thanks to her leadership, increasing engagement with the Republic of Korea has been a key effort of our administration.”

About 50,000 Korean-Americans live in Maryland, making up about 0.8% of the state’s population.

Other states with significant Korean-American populations include California, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Texas, Washington, Illinois and Pennsylvania.

About The Author

Bryan Renbaum

Reporter Bryan Renbaum served as the Capitol Hill Correspondent for Talk Media News for the past three-and-a-half years, filing print, radio and video reports on the Senate and the House of Representatives. He covered congressional reaction to the inauguration of President Donald Trump as well as the confirmation hearings of attorneys general Jeff Sessions and William Barr and Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. He also filed breaking news reports on the 2017 shooting of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and three others. Previously Bryan broke multiple stories with the Baltimore Post-Examiner including sexual assault scandals at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and a texting scandal on the women’s lacrosse team at that school for which he was interviewed by ABC’s “Good Morning America.” He also covered the Maryland General Assembly during the 2016 legislative session as an intern for Maryland Reporter. He has a bachelor’s degree in political science from McDaniel College. If you have additional questions or comments contact Bryan at:

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