On June 21st, 2012, Pasadena Police Officer Ralph Ordonez was selected to participate in the 13th Annual Multi-Cultural Leadership Korea Visitation Program, sponsored by GCS Los Angeles Club International (Goodwill, Cooperation, Service, LA Club). Officer Ordonez is a 23-year veteran of the Pasadena Police Department and will participate in the 10-day Korea visitation program in October 2012.
The Multi-Cultural Leadership Korea Visitation Program was created in 1997, following the civil unrest of Rodney King. The purpose of the program is to educate and help non-Korean American leaders to better understand the Korean community, in terms of history and culture. The program also assists in providing a peaceful and mutual understanding of people of Korean ancestry living in the United States.
Various leaders are invited to submit an application for participation in the Korea Visitation Program. Members of GCS LA make the final selection from among the best candidates. The LA delegates (participants) consist of various leaders from different lines of work, such as civil servants, policemen, educators, social workers and non-profit organizations.
The participants of this program will attend an orientation and an introduction course on Korean politics, economics, language and Korean culture. They will also visit several interesting places in Korea: such as the Hyundai Ship-Building Yard in Ulsan, historical heritages in Kyungjoo, Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) on the borderline between the South and the North, and many other attractions in Seoul.
The Pasadena Police Department has allowed 13 employees to participate in this educational program since 1999. The cost to participate is shared by the participating employee and GCS LA; there is no cost to the City of Pasadena or the tax payers of the city.