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Yong-Soon Kang, associate professor, dies

Yong-Soon Kang, 46, associate pro-fessor of marketing in the School of Management, died Friday, April 22, following an illness. Kang joined the Binghamton faculty in 1997 and taught marketing research, marketing strategy and advertising. He earned his bachelor’s degree in English literature from Han Yang University, Seoul, Korea; his MBA from California State University in Los Angeles; and his doctorate in business administration and marketing from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Prior to coming to Binghamton, Kang served as a research associate and a lecturer in the College of Business Admini-stration at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He also worked for the Korea National Tourism Organization and for the Seoul Olympic Organizing Committee. Kang “was just the brightest and most enthusiastic person,” said Upinder Dhillon, dean of the School of Management. “He always had a smile on his face, and he had a great sense of humor, yet he had a very strong spirit and was a very hard-working, dedicated faculty member who really cared about students and what the process of education is all about.” Kang took his responsibilities as a teacher very seriously, said Subimal Chatterjee, associate professor of marketing. “He was really an amazing person and his students loved him,” Chatterjee said. “He was one of the best teachers in the marketing depart-ment, and he always made sure that the students not only got the textbook learning part, but also what was happening in the managerial world out there.” Kang was also passionate about mountain climbing, said Chatterjee. “Many thought it was just a sport for him, but to him it was a metaphor for life. He always said that if you put your mind to it, you can accomplish it.” Kang climbed the Himalayas as part of a joint Korean-U.S. expedition, Chatterjee said. “It was a teaching semester, so he, with permission from the provost, front loaded his classes and explained to students why, then took a month off and climbed the mountain all the way to the top. He then came back on a weekend and on Monday was back in class. His commitment to the students was amazing. When he promised he would be back on a certain day, he was, no matter how hard it was for him. That’s the kind of person he was. If he was told he couldn’t do something, all the more he would do it. “He was a remarkable person and an extremely good friend,” Chatterjee said. Paul Herr, professor of marketing at the University of Colorado at Boulder, served on Kang’s dissertation committee and wrote several papers with him after Kang earned his doctorate. “He had enthusiasm and energy and a will to achieve that was really boundless,” said Herr. “There were a lot of parallels between his climbing mountains and getting papers published.” Kang was the recipient of the 1995 Best Article Award from the Journal of Travel Research and won the Marketing Science Insti-tute’s 1994 Alden G. Clayton Doctoral Dissertation Competition. He was also a fellow of the 1994 American Marketing Association Doctoral Consortium. He was a member of the American Marketing Association, the Association for Consumer Research, the American Psychological Association, the American Economic Association, the Institute of Management Sciences and the Travel and Tourism Research Association. Kang is survived by his wife, a son and a daughter.
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Last Updated: 10/14/08