Maryland’s First Lady Yumi Hogan
Maryland’s First Lady, Yumi Hogan, is the first Korean American First Lady in the United States and the first Asian American First Lady of Maryland. She is the youngest of eight children and grew up on a farm in the countryside of South Korea. Mrs. Hogan is a first-generation Korean American, the mother of three daughters, and has four grandchildren.
Mrs. Hogan is an accomplished artist and adjunct professor at Maryland Institute College of Art. Her artwork, created on traditional Hanji paper with Sumi ink with mixed media, has been featured in solo and group exhibitions and museums in Maryland, Virginia, New York, Los Angeles, the District of Columbia, South Korea, and Greece, including the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
Working with board members of the Foundation for the Preservation of Government House of Maryland, Mrs. Hogan used her artistic talent to renovate and restore Government House and organized a celebration of its 150th anniversary. She also designs Christmas ornaments inspired by Government House every year.
Mrs. Hogan has made it a top priority to share her love of art and to spread the healing power of the arts with Marylanders of all ages. She has judged numerous art exhibitions and proudly supports museums and local art councils across the state. Collaborating with members of the BWI Static Arts Committee, Mrs. Hogan helped to rebrand and open galleries at BWI Marshall Airport for Marylanders and tourists as they travel. She is a strong supporter of Special Olympics Maryland and hosted an exhibition for youth with disabilities to bring awareness to children’s mental health. Additionally, she is an advocate for art communities and young artists, and promotes art education among vulnerable populations.
Following Governor Hogan’s diagnosis with Stage 3 non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2015 and their family’s battle with the disease, Mrs. Hogan has become a vocal advocate for cancer awareness and devoted much of her time to visiting other patients. Combining her love for art and caregiving, she founded Yumi C.A.R.E.S. (Children’s Art for Recovery, Empowerment, and Strength), a nonprofit that offers art therapy to help patients ages 1 to 21 with different health challenges emotionally and physically heal. Since its launch at the University of Maryland Children’s Hospital in October of 2018, the Yumi C.A.R.E.S. art therapy program has helped give hope and comfort to countless patients and their families.
Mrs. Hogan has also made tremendous efforts to unify diverse communities in Maryland. Since 2015, she has served as the Honorary Chair of the Council for Arts and Culture at the University of Maryland, Baltimore and supported a neighborhood festival to bring various cultures and communities together. Additionally, she has helped organize cultural events and promoted international cuisines, multilingual education, and traditional martial arts.
Other important causes Mrs. Hogan continuously advocates for as first lady include empowering victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, and supporting veterans, first responders, and their families.
As a strong advocate for food security, she has coordinated events with the Maryland Food Bank to provide hunger and poverty relief for children and youth across the state. Mrs. Hogan also hosts a YouTube series, “Yumi Cooks” to share the joy of cooking with Marylanders and connect different cultures and generations with her personal Korean recipes.
Mrs. Hogan is a recipient of several nationally-recognized philanthropic awards, including the Inspirational Leader Award from the International Leadership Foundation, the Pheo Para Alliance’s Dr. Cyrus Katzen Humanitarian Award, which she received in 2016, and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, which she received in 2017.