Sunday, September 27, 2009


Gaymer Appointed ATEK Communications Director

Dann Gaymer, 22, of the United Kingdom has been named the communications director for the Association of English Teachers in Korea (ATEK).

His appointment follows the election of previous communications director Greg Dolezal as ATEK president earlier in September.

Dann and I have never met, but he was contributed a number of articles to The Herald.

ATEK sent out the following press release this morning announcing his appointment:

(Daegu, South Korea)— The Association for Teachers of English in Korea (ATEK) has nominated Dann Gaymer as its new communications director.
The nomination follows former communications director Greg Dolezal election as President of ATEK earlier this month.

Dann Gaymer, 22, is a British citizen who has been living and working in Deagu, South Korea since August 2008. He has a bachelors degree in Social Anthropology from the University of Kent, where he also worked as a part time as a research assistant. After graduating he came to Korea to be an English teacher yet at the same time began writing for publications across the nation, including the Korea Herald, the Youngnam Ilbo and Eloquence Magazine.

"We are excited about Dann taking on this role as we anticipate he will help strengthen ATEK's image and give a strong voice for our members" said Dolezal with regards to the nomination.
Dolezal was elected on a platform of building a grass roots foundation for the organization by increasing membership and electing regional leaders as opposed to primarily focusing on advocacy and human rights work.
In August, Tom Rainey-Smith, a founder of ATEK, stepped down as acting president so that a democratic election could take place, overseen by an election committee appointed by the ATEK national council, which was seated on July 1.
Speaking of his appointment as communications director, Gaymer said, "I'm honored to be able to play such important role in ATEK. We have a lot of work ahead of us but I feel its work worth doing because it will hopefully illicit positive changes for both present and future members of ATEK and English teachers throughout South Korea."

Since launching in March, The Association for Teachers of English in Korea (ATEK), a professional organization that provides support services for foreign teachers, has attracted nearly 1,000 members across South Korea and has prompted the formation of numerous local teachers' associations.

ATEK's past achievements include the “Equal Checks for All Campaign” which was launched to as a way for workers on E2 visas to communicate their grievances against the imposition of discriminatory visa regulations, the filing of a complaint to the Korean Press Ethics Commission (KPEC) about the negative bias against ex-pat teachers in the media and, with help from the Seoul Global Center (SGC), the publishing of 'The English Teacher’s Guide to Korea', a teacher's guidebook/manual.

In his new role Gaymer's responsibilities will include monitoring and commenting on articles relating to foreign teachers in the Korean media, improving the image of foreigners in Korea and establishing a dialogue with organizations representing Korean teachers and employers, such as the Korean hagwon association (KAFLA). He will also actively pursue expanding the Daegu chapter of ATEK.


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