John was first introduced to Liberty in North Korea in 2009 and became very passionate about helping the North Korean people. Though he didn’t join our staff until 2014, he stayed connected by becoming a monthly donor and keeping up with our work. When he got an email announcing our search for a new director of finance and operations, he jumped at the chance. Now, he’s a valued member of our team and we couldn’t imagine the office without him.
Want to get to know John a little better? Read our Q&A:
Q: Why did you want to work at LiNK?
A: In order to be fulfilled by the work that I do, I have to believe in the underlying purpose of that work. LiNK supports the people of North Korea in their pursuit of better lives for themselves, their families, and their country. It’s an honor and a privilege to play a small role in making that happen.
Q: What has been your favorite experience since working with LiNK?
A: I had the opportunity recently to travel to San Francisco with Joseph Kim for an event where he shared a bit of his story. I was fortunate enough to be able to spend time with him during our travels, and was able to get to know him on a more personal level. Additionally, hearing him share about his journey and seeing the impact that his words had on every individual in that room, re-ignited my passion for the work that LiNK is doing.
Q: What are your day-to-day duties?
A: The majority of my time is spent is overseeing all of the accounting, bookkeeping, budgeting and other financial activities for LiNK. I help to make sure that the generous support of our donors goes to the right place at the right time. I spend time analyzing the past, current, and future financial position of the organization so that we can achieve maximum impact. I also partner with our HR/Recruitment manager to ensure that our staff and volunteers have the resources they need to be effective.
Q: What are your favorite hobbies?
A: Snowboarding and spending time with my wife and three young children; Lucie, Samson, and Mack.
Q: Why did you decide to work on this issue?
A: There are thousands of issues in this world that are worthy of having time, energy, and resources dedicated to. I happen to believe that this ranks among the top in terms of importance and urgency. I decided to work in this area because LiNK is providing everyday people like me with legitimate solutions to a situation that is seen by many as being too big to tackle.
Q: What was your biggest accomplishment last year?
A: Though likely not too exciting in the eyes of most, our department did a complete overhaul on our general ledger account structure. This change will increase consistency and transparency, while decreasing complexity, redundancy, and the possibility for data entry errors, all while still allowing for robust financial reporting.
Q: What are you hoping to accomplish in the coming year?
A: This year I hope to make even more of the boring and mundane tasks (which are necessary for any organization to run properly) feel less burdensome to our staff, so that they can focus their time and energy on supporting the North Korean people.