083 // On navigating identity and being true to yourself w/Rick Allen

by KJ Roelke | Published March 29, 2022
Featured image for 083 // On navigating identity and being true to yourself w/Rick Allen

In this week’s episode of your favorite Korean Adoptee podcast, the Janchi Boys sit down with Rick Allen on being Black, Korean, and a late discovery adoptee and how all of that has played a significant role in his journey to reconnect with Korean culture. He also talks about his experience returning to Korea, undergoing a birth search, and the yearning for acceptance.

Later, Rick tries us for a tasty treat!

// Meet Rick Allen
In this episode we talk about:
  • The Pachinko Intro: 1:24
  • Welcome, Rick!: 13:12
  • Rick’s adoption story: 16:03
  • Navigating discovery: 22:04
  • Navigating culture: 27:51
  • Celebrating identity amidst violence: 30:39
  • The catalyst for engaging with Korean culture: 33:50
  • Going back to Korea for the first time: 38:46
  • Returning to the site of the orphanage: 44:10
  • Starting a birth search & reuniting with his birth father: 47:41
  • How are you doing, man?: 56:07
  • Navigating the future: 1:02:25
  • On acceptance: 1:07:55
  • The Tasty Eating Portion: 1:14:37
// 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 at 5 months old and raised in a small town in Oklahoma by a loving family and non-biological 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.  In 2021, Nathan and his family moved back to Colorado to be closer to family and start a new chapter in their lives.
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 grew up in Rensselaer, Indiana. He attended college at Purdue before working in a number of different industries over the next decade. He has been an advocate for numerous causes, including the undocumented adoptee community and the Asian American community. He also speaks on his personal story with adoption and identity. Currently, Patrick resides in Indianapolis with his wife and their cat and enjoys comics, adaptations of comics, and Purdue sports.
Connect with Patrick!
  • Website: http://patrickintheworld.me
  • 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 spends his days populating the internet with content.
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 & Patrick Armstrong
Show Art by: Nathan Nowack