The Korean American Coalition was founded in Los Angeles in 1983. Yeo-Chun Kim wrote this in the Korea Times on February 18, 1983:
COALITION FORMED TO FILL COMMUNITY GAPS
A group of young Korean-Americans are organizing what they call a "Korean American Coalition" (KAC) - an organization of all generations that will work as an effective advocate of the Korean community's interest.
"We plan to put the organization into action next week after installing staff officers," said Tong Soo Chung, a JD candidate at UCLA law school, who for nearly a year has played a pivotal role in materializing the coalition movement.
Chung says the KAC activities will include expressing the views of the Korean community through letter-writing, signature collections and demonstrations, and establishing a channel of communication between Korean and other ethnic communities.
"We should have a central location where other communities may contact us for community help, support or information. We also need to have our representatives at various organizations of Asian communities with which we will need to work together," Chung stressed.
He said the Korean community should now have a viable, working organization composed of different generations - first, second and even third generations - to lay the foundation for a better future for the Korean Americans as a whole.
"What we need is action, action that will bring people together. Action that will bridge the gap between the English-speaking and Korean-speaking Korean Amercians. Action that will bring the old and the young together," Chung said.
Within that critical first year a officers were elected, a Board was formed, and KAC's first Executive Director, a 23-year-old Fullbright Scholar named Annie Cho, was hired. A biased report concerning Korean immigration in Los Angeles that appeared in Time magazine resulted in national attention for the fledgling Coalition, as did a series of protests against Soviet cargo ships at Long Beach harbor in response to the downing of Korean Air Flight 007.
In 1984 KAC organized a massive voter-registration drive in preparation for federal, state, and local elections, and became a focal point for political campaigns, hosting legislators and even Presidential candidate Walter Mondale's daughter at the KAC offices in Koreatown.
Since that time the Korean American Coalition has become a driving political force in Los Angeles, adhering to its original mission statement:
The Korean American Coalition – Los Angeles (KAC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1983 to promote the civic and civil rights interests of the Korean American community. KAC endeavors to achieve these goals through education, community organizing, leadership development, and coalition-building with diverse communities.