Dr. Hong, a business professor at the University of Toledo, was born in Korea. He was Congresswoman Kaptur’s special guest to the House chamber to hear President Park address the U.S. House and Senate on May 9.

President Park, the first woman president in Korean history, earlier conducted a summit meeting with President Obama.

During her speech to the joint session, President Park reiterated her demand that the government of North Korea abandon its nuclear weapons program. She said her country will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea.

Instead, she called for a new era of peace, envisioning the Korean Peninsula as a “test-bed for a future free of nuclear arms. If we can pull it off on the Korean peninsula, we can pull it off anywhere else.”

President Park said that during her visit to Washington, D.C. she had once again visited the Korean War Memorial in Washington.  Its words, she said, always inspire her: “Our nation honors its son and daughters, who answered the call to defend a country they never knew and a people they never met.”

With that, she expressed “profound gratitude” to America’s veterans on behalf of the people of Korea. “Their blood, sweat and tears helped safeguard freedom and democracy.”

She said the 60th anniversary year of the U.S.-Korea alliance underscores the commitment of both allies to “help spread the universal values of freedom, human rights and the rule of law.”