Hello, friends of the internet. We're doing this again. It is time to meet the Angry Reader of the Week, spotlighting you, the very special readers of this website. Over the years, I've been able to connect with a lot of cool folks, and this is a way of showing some appreciation and attention to the people who help make this blog what it is. This week's Angry Reader is Julie Young.
Who are you?
I was born Yoon JiHyun, became Julie Ann Cardona and am now Julie Young.
What are you?
I am an adopted, Korean American, woman, mom of twins, wife, writer, producer, recovering attorney, dreamer and believer in kindness.
Where are you?
I'm in New York City, in the land of Dumbo. I love the city the way I love a person -- passionately.
Where are you from?
Like where am I from from? Haha. I just recently participated in a race-based discussion event around the whole theme of "Where are you really from?" Whenever someone asks me this question, I usually respond with what do you mean? Because usually what the asker means is where were you born? I was born in Seoul, Korea. Several years after I found my Korean mom, she told me the story of my birth and I was literally born on the sidewalk. She was walking to the hospital but apparently I didn't want to wait! I was adopted at the age of three by an Italian-Irish American family and grew up in a suburb of Rochester, New York called Fairport. I got out of there as fast as I could by going to college in the city.
What do you do?
The latest iteration of myself includes being a producer and host of the web series "Not Your Average" for KoreanAmericanStory.org. I'm also a writer (check out my "Heart and Seoul" column for KoreanAmericanStory.org.) I'm a speaker and a facilitator usually on topics related to adoption and race. Oh and I'm also the founder of two organizations! One is called DreamMaker DreamDoer DreamSupporter (3D) which is a creative production company with the vision of providing intergenerational support, access and resources to people wanting to live a creative life. The other organization I founded is called The Phenomenal Girls Club and it's a nonprofit for girls of color between the ages of 6-9, that encourages leadership, learning and friendship.
I also serve as the Board Chair for KoreanAmericanStory.org and as an advisory Board member of Nazdeek, an organization doing social justice work through legal action and training. It was started by three young women attorneys and they do amazing, life-changing work, currently in India.
In addition to all of this, I try and be the best mom I can be to my son and daughter because I know that's my most important job.
What are you all about?
I'm passionate about supporting younger creatives. I've always been a creative person yet I was encouraged to follow a more traditional career path (thus being a recovering attorney now!) I think that if I had been given the type of support I try to provide for folks that I probably would not have become a lawyer. I'm living a creative life now and I'm very grateful for it but had I been given the support and resources when I was younger, it wouldn't have taken me so long to get here. To be honest though, I love hanging out with younger creatives because they truly inspire me. I love being inspired!
What makes you angry?
Systemic racism, white privilege, when people try to dismiss someone by labeling them "angry," for example, "angry adoptee" or "angry Black woman."