Sungchul Kim

Keynote Speaker

Sungchul Kim joined Freedom Speakers International in 2017 as a public speaker. He was a featured speaker at the Asia Liberty Forum in early 2019 (in Sri Lanka).

He was first arrested by the North Korean police when he tried to return to North Korea from China in 2001. He was repatriated to North Korea three times while he was living in China until 2006.

From 2008 to 2010, he attended Yeomyeong School, an alternative school for North Korean refugee adolescents, where he completed his elementary, middle school, and high school education. In 2013, he studied English at Harriet Fulbright College Salaries in Washington, D.C. for four months. He received a BA in International Studies and Social Welfare in 2015 from Handong Global University (HGU).

Since 2018, he has worked at Own Business(trading) and as a Senior Assistant Manager at Mprotek representing European Companies in South Korea. He has won multiple awards including best picture at the Essay Contest in Hanawon (2007), best picture in the field of poetry from the Ministry of Unification in South Korea at the Literature Contest hosted by the Gyeonggi-Do Cultural Foundation (2009), the President’s Prize from President Manyeol Lee of the Yeomyeong School (2010), the grand prize of the North Korean English Speaking Contest hosted by WooYang Foundation (2011), and the grand prize of the North Korean Defectors Settlement Success Story Competition (2016).

An excerpt from a poem by Sungchul
I climb a rocky road to survive
Daydreaming to forget about hunger
With tears in my eyes
I step forward to the place I must go