County honors Mike Park for service to Federal Way and Korean-Americans

Park became the state’s first Korean-American mayor in 2000.

Former Federal Way Mayor Mike Park has received the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Medal of Distinguished Service for decades of leadership in the city and South King County.

King County Councilman Pete von Reichbauer presented the award Monday in Seattle and recognized Park’s efforts to build bridges for the Korean-American community. The award recognizes those in King County who have responded to Dr. King’s challenge: “What are you doing for others?”

Park has been active in Federal Way since the city’s incorporation in 1990, and he went on to become the state’s first Korean-American mayor in 2000. In addition to serving 16 years on the Federal Way City Council, Park played a pivotal role 25 years ago in establishing quarterly meetings between the Korean-American community and city officials. These meetings provide a key communication channel between the city and its Korean-speaking population.

During his service, Park established a reputation as a mild-mannered leader with a knack for building consensus and connections behind the scenes. Park, who owns a dry cleaning business, was known for bringing a business sensibility to council decisions. He often represented Federal Way on visits to South Korean sister city Donghae.

In 2011, the Republic of Korea presented Park its President’s Medal. Park has also served as Chairman of the Seattle-Washington State Korean American Association, Vice Chairman of the Federal Way Community Safety Task Force, President of the Seattle Chapter of the National Unification Advisory Council, Chairman of the Korean School of Federal Way and several other community organizations and boards.