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Snapshot of an Almost JD: Khloe Lee

March 10, 2014

“Khloe does it all.  She works hard and is always put together.  She manages to remain involved in many activities despite her incredibly busy schedule.  Seeing her son around campus reminds me to value my education and family.  Whenever I see her around, I feel encouraged to keep going and to work hard.  Two words: supermom, superwoman.”


Halah asked Khloe the following questions.  Here are her answers:


What’s your educational background?

I have a BA in Social Work from Ewha Woman’s University, Seoul, Korea, and an MA in Broadcasting Production from Boston University, Boston, MA.

What about your family background?

I was born and raised in Seoul, Korea.  After I graduated from college, I moved to Boston for a graduate degree. To me, Boston is my second hometown. I had my first professional job in television while I was living in Boston, and met my husband in Boston. After living there for about six years, I moved back to Korea and thought we were settled. However, you never know where life takes you.  After several years, my husband’s job was relocated, and we moved back to San Jose, California. I have a sweet, energetic, and lovely seven-year-old boy who sometimes tags along to my evening classes.

Why did you decide to go to law school?

I thought law could deliver some direct solutions to victims and marginalized populations of the society that I have met during my broadcasting career. Also, my direct and indirect exposure to gender discrimination led me to pursue law, solidifying my decision to become an advocate for women and minorities.   

What is your favorite part about Lewis & Clark?

The nature. I also appreciate Lewis & Clark’s collegial atmosphere.

What is your least favorite part about Lewis & Clark?

I can’t think of any “least” favorite part of L&C. However, I sometimes feel that the heavy workload and the pressure of the law school in general hinder us from making more meaningful relationships with each other. 

What are your future job and career goals?

Since I am changing my career, I made a conscious choice that I would explore different legal settings during my law school experience to make an informed choice about my future job.  As such, I interned at a law firm (Hillsboro Law Group), a regional government (Office of Metro Attorneys), and clerked for Judge Youlee You in Multnomah County. I also worked for the legal department of Oregon Public Broadcasting because I had an interest in media law which I acquired from my academic and working background in the media industry.  Most recently, I worked for the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office.  As of now, I am thinking of a government job or an attorney position at a small firm. Eventually, I would like to pursue my legal career where I can help women and minorities. 

What do you think prospective students should know about law school?

Be yourself and feel comfortable about adjusting your goals realistically. I live with my little boy in Portland. My husband stays in San Jose, CA and comes up here every few weeks or so. That living arrangement makes my life sometimes complicated.  Instead of being stressed out about it, I learned to manage time more efficiently and let go of some goals.  Those goals range from investing time for studying to time for networking and socializing.  It is an on-going, everyday decision I make.  In addition, there are so many interesting areas of law and interesting classes. The Lewis & Clark faculty and students will amaze and motivate you. 

What is an interesting part about your background?  Or in other words, how do you contribute to the diversity of Lewis & Clark?

Prior to law school, I produced and directed television news and documentaries both in the United States and in Korea.  I worked for WMUR-TV (ABC affiliate) in Manchester, New Hampshire, as a morning news director and WBZ-Radio (CBS affiliate) in Boston, MA, as a weekend news writer. I then worked as a multimedia producer for an online publishing company, producing promotional videos for interactive textbooks. After I moved back to Korea, I continued to work for television as a producer/director. I frequently worked overnight and dealt with endless deadlines. Being in charge of creating and delivering a program on national television was a lot of pressure. At the same time, however, I loved the creative aspect of my job because I could see the impact I could make. I had a privilege to encounter many extraordinary people from many different backgrounds. Some stories empowered me and transformed my perspectives of life. 

I once filmed a father whose life was devastated because his small child had been missing for three years. That was Christmas Eve. I came back with the footage and edited the piece overnight to have the segment ready to go on air the next day. I hoped that my program would somehow help him to locate the whereabouts of his missing child, which was only a small fraction of effort compared to his whole life that was devoted to find his little girl. Sometimes I think of that night, and feel humbled.

Another story that lingers with me is my 2004 coverage of same sex marriage in Massachusetts.  Pitching the idea of featuring a lesbian wedding and legalization of same sex marriage in America to a Korean network television was not an easy task.  It was an election year, and the desk liked the idea because of the political aspect, the point I stressed in my proposal. However, they warned me not to advocate the legalization of same-sex marriage, which I was hoping to editorialize with some nuance with the discretion I had as the main producer and director. Of course, I didn’t tell them such intention.  I traveled to New York and Boston and interviewed government officials and activists. I met and captured the story of a 47 year-old lesbian couple and their wedding in a beautiful beach house in Cape Code, MA.  Although I ended up cutting out some of the interviews regarding the issue after negotiating with the desk, the program was a success, generating a high rating and a heated discussion on its website.  

I contribute to the diversity of L&C because I bring both cultural and professional experiences that are different from many others. Being a mother also adds to the diverse student body of L&C!


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