053 // Navigating Identity and Cinnamon Drinks with Joy Lieberthal Rho!

by KJ Roelke | Published August 22, 2021
Featured image for 053 // Navigating Identity and Cinnamon Drinks with Joy Lieberthal Rho!


Episode Summary: In this week’s episode of your favorite Korean Adoptee podcast, the Janchi Boys sit down with Joy Lieberthal Rho and talk about all facets of being a Korean adoptee. Joy shares her story of growing up with a diverse group of adopted siblings, exploring what it means to be Asian in college, and how that led her to the work she’s doing today. She also talks to us about moving between identities and how we can go from awkward to seamless.

Later, Joy joins us for a tasty beverage that we’ve got hot takes about. ROLL THE CLIP!

// Meet Joy Lieberthal Rho
Show Resources
In this episode we talk about:
  • The Most Random Intro Ever: 0:45
  • Welcome Joy!: 8:12
  • Leading a Diverse Group of Siblings in a Non-Diverse Community: 11:42
  • The Waiting Game of Conversation w/Siblings: 16:24
  • Starting an Asian Sorority: 22:11
  • Conversations about Identity: 26:13
  • The Complex, Wild Ride of Reunion: 31:52
  • “Becoming Korean”: 38:23
  • Seamlessly Moving through Identities: 43:04
  • Engaging with the Adoptee Community: 46:04
  • Working in the Adoptee Space: 50:08
  • I AM Adoptee + Camp Sejong!: 55:10
  • CINNAMON DRINK!: 1:06:38
// Support/Follow the Show!
The Janchi Show Quick Bio
We’re three Korean Adoptees spread out around America and each of us are at different stages in life. We’ll talk about the Korean adoptee experience from our perspectives 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 Nowack
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 Armstrong
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
K.J. Roelke
KJ was adopted from Daegu and raised in Dallas, Texas with his two biological, older siblings and his younger sister, adopted from Russia. After spending a decade in the Midwest for college and career, he and his wife are back in Dallas and living large! He has been on his journey of discovery since 2015 and you can find him online to see what he’s up to now!
Connect with K.J.!
// Listen to/Watch The Janchi Show on all major platforms:
  • Apple: https://janchishow.com/apple
  • Spotify: https://janchishow.com/spotify
  • Youtube: https://janchishow.com/youtube
// Join the Asian Podcast Network:
  • Website: https://asianpodcastnetwork.com/
  • Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/asianpodcastnetwork/
  • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/asianpodcastnetwork/ 
// The Janchi Show is produced by Just Like Media:
  • Website: http://www.justlikemedia.com
  • Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/justlikemedia
Executive Producer: Jerry Won
Creative Director: Michelle Nam
Audio & Video Engineer: K.J. Roelke