Ilyoung Ju

Keynote Speaker

Illyong joined Freedom Speakers International (FSI) as a public speaker in 2022 and participated in the 17th and 18th FSI North Korean Refugee English Speech Contests.

Illyong was born in Chongjin, North Korea. His parents secretly listened to South Korean radio broadcasts, which are illegal in North Korea. After years of listening, his parents began planning to defect from North Korea. His father first left for South Korea to work for a year and to raise enough money to help the rest of his family escape. His father eventually helped the rest of his family escape separately, and they were reunited in 2012.

In 2021, Illyong received his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and International Relations from Korea University. He is currently enrolled in a master’s program at the same school, studying the same major. He is also working for a mission group called One King One Korea (One.K). He dreams of the day 25 million North Koreans will be able to live in freedom.