In today’s episode, we talk to Nick Messersmith—a Korean-American adoptee from Iowa and master of Taekwondo. Nick shares about growing up in Iowa and how his parents’ desire to help him retain part of his Korean culture led to a life immersed in martial arts. We learn about his Korean grandmaster, training in Korea, and the impact that Taekwondo has had on Nick’s life. He also talks about how that training led him to a career in the film industry and what he’s doing to help bring more Asian representation to Hollywood.
Later we dive into Mystery Item #6 with a special guest. OHHHHHH YESSSSSSSSS!
In this episode we talk about:
- Intro & Adoption Story: 0:00
- Growing Up and Taekwondo: 7:25
- The Grandmaster: 15:02
- Stunts, Film, and Asian Representation in Hollywood: 19:50
- OH YESSSSSS!: 34:15
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A Quick Janchi Show Bio
We’re three Korean-American Adoptees spread out around the country and each of us are at different stages in life. We’ll talk about the Korean-American adoptee experience and learn more about our shared culture, usually with food. And it won’t just be the three of us; each week we’ll have other adoptees from all over the world joining us to talk about what makes us similar and what makes us unique. So join the party!
// Meet the Janchi Boys!
Nathan was adopted from Seoul and raised in a small town in Oklahoma by a loving family and adopted sister. After college in Colorado he later moved to Los Angeles to pursue a digital media career and eventually started 2 photography companies. He has a wife and 3 kids and has reconnected with his biological family in 2014.
Connect with Nathan!
- Website: http://www.nathannowack.com
- LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/in/nathann/
- Instagram: http://instagram.com/nowackphoto
Patrick was adopted from Seoul and raised in a small(er than Nathan’s) town in Indiana. After dropping out of college, he travelled around, working a variety of jobs before co-founding the All Times Are Local Foundation with his adopted sister in Chicago. He currently lives in Indianapolis with his fiancé and is 7 seconds into his journey of exploring his Korean-American adoptee identity.
Connect with Patrick!
- Website: http://www.alltimesarelocal.org
- LinkedIn: http://linkedin/in/patrickarmstrong219
- Instagram: http://instagram.com/patrickintheworld
KJ was adopted from Daegu and raised in Dallas, Texas with his two biological, older siblings and his younger sister, adopted from Russia. He graduated from Greenville College and has served as the Worship & Creative Director at Schweitzer Church in Springfield, Missouri since then. He is married, with no children (yet!), and has been on his journey of discovery since 2015.
Connect with K.J.!
- Website: http://kj.roelke.info/
- LinkedIn: http://linkedin/in/kjroelke
- Instagram: http://instagram.com/kjroelke
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// The Janchi Show is produced by Just Like Media:
Executive Producer: Jerry Won
Creative Director: Michelle Nam
Audio & Video Engineer: K.J. Roelke