10881706_10152997530532990_6717730661412266303_nDavid was born and raised in Philadelphia. He attended public school except for his freshman year of high school when he attended Christopher Dock Mennonite High School in Lansdale, PA. David graduated from Central High School, Dickinson College, and Rutgers University Law School-Camden. David’s father, the late Reverend Ki Hang Oh, founded Philadelphia’s first Korean-American church in 1953 and served as its Pastor until his death in 2006. In 1958, David’s cousin, In Ho Oh, a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, was murdered by a group of teenage boys while mailing a letter to his parents. Because of their faith, In Ho Oh’s parents requested leniency for the boys and started a fund to help educate and rehabilitate them upon their release. Rev. Oh started a community service center in his name. In Ho Oh is buried at historic Old Pine Cemetery where his tombstone simply reads, “To turn sorrow into Christian purpose.”

David began his legal career while still in law school by starting a volunteer, free legal aid program. For this and other works, David received a Human Rights Award from the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations. After graduating from law school, he worked as a Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney. In 1988, David resigned to enlist in the U.S. Army. David served as a 2nd Lieutenant, C Company, 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Army National Guard, from 1989 to 1992 (David was not Special Forces qualified). In 1991, David was activated with his unit forOperation Desert Storm. The war ended before David was deployed overseas and he was released with an Honorable Discharge. Upon returning to Philadelphia, David reopened his solo law practice in Southwest Philadelphia. In 1999, David organized Governor Tom Ridge’s trade mission to South Korea, arranging meetings with Korea’s President and major corporate leaders. Over the years, David’s office outgrew its space and moved to Center City. David managed his firm for 18 years and then, in 2008, merged it into a larger firm.

Thanks to very broad and diverse support from voters across the city, David was elected to City Council At-Large in November 2011 and took office in January 2012. David is the first and only Asian-American elected to political office in Philadelphia. He is also the only veteran currently serving on City Council.

David and his wife, Heesun, have four children, Hannah, Joshua, Daniel and Sarah. They live in Southwest Philadelphia on the same block where David has lived since 1963.

Past and Present Boards & Commissions

Nazareth Hospital
Greater Philadelphia Metro Export Plan, Steering Committee
Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians
Philadelphia Cultural Fund
Community College of Philadelphia
Nazareth Academy High School
Monte Jade Science & Technology Association: Mid-Atlantic Chapter
Walnut Street Theater
First Commercial Bank of Philadelphia
Christian Street YMCA
Tribune Newspaper Charities
PA. House Advisory Committee on Workers’ Compensation Reform
Crime Prevention Association
Philadelphia Health and Education Corporation (Hahnemann University)
Friends of the Korean War Memorial at Penn’s Landing
Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition
Mayor’s Commission on Literacy
Philadelphia Police Advisory Commission
Educational Nominating Panel for the Philadelphia Board of Education
Federal Judicial Nominating Committee for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
MiND Independent Television (formerly WYBE Public Television)
Dickinson College Alumni Council
Central High School Alumni Association
82nd Airborne Association: Hajdak/Mokan (Philadelphia) Chapter, Past Chairman


Plaque of Appreciation (2014), Connection for Humanity
Award for Continued Advocacy and Advancement for Local Veterans (2014), Veterans Multi-service Center
Certificate of Appreciation (2013), U.S. Army Special Forces Association, National Headquarters
Veteran Humanitarian Award (2013), Philadelphia NAACP
Certificate of Achievement (2013), General Meade Society of Philadelphia
Certificate of Appreciation for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (2013), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Philadelphia Region
Pioneer In Diversity (2012), The Pentecostal Clergy Political Awareness Committee
Certificate of Appreciation (2012), American Legion-Benjamin Franklin Post 405/Union League
Civic Leadership Award for dedicated service to children and families (2012), Youth Service Inc.
Lincoln Day Award (2012), Germantown Republican Club
Person of the Year (2012), The New York Korean Daily Newspaper
Distinguished Leadership Award for outstanding contribution to Higher Education (2012), Community College of Philadelphia
Recognition Award (2011), Friendship of Council of US
Decade of Service Award (2010), The Pentecostal Clergy Political Awareness Committee
Plaque of Appreciation for Continued Devotion and Dedication to the Philadelphia Veterans Community (2008), Philadelphia Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Society
Certificate of Appreciation, Keynote Speaker for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (2005), U.S. Department of Housing Development , Philadelphia Regional Office
Honor Graduate Award (2005), P.A.H.P.E.R.D
Community Service Award (2004), Pan Asian Association of Greater Philadelphia
Humanities Award (1998), M.W. St. John’s Grand Lodge
Humanitarian Award (1995), The National Conference of Christians and Jews
The Outstanding Young Leader Award (1994), Philadelphia Chapter of The United States Jaycees
Outstanding Contribution to the Philadelphia Community, Asian Pacific Heritage Month (1994), U.S. Marshall Service
Plaque of Appreciation, Asian American Heritage Month (1993), Naval Air Warfare Center- Aircraft Division Warminster
Appreciation Award for supporting cultural awareness seminar (1993), Naval Warfare Center
Outstanding Service Award (1991), Chinese-American Resource Center
Outstanding Achievement Award (1990), Pan Asian Association of Greater Philadelphia
Plaque of Appreciation for Dedicated Service (1988), Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office
Human Rights Award (1985), Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations

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