(ATTN: ADDS more info about the appointees throughout, photos)
SEOUL, March 24 (Yonhap) -- President Park Geun-hye named her close aide and former four-term lawmaker Lee Kyeong-jae to head the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) and selected eight new vice ministerial-level officials, her spokesman said Sunday.
Lee graduated from Seoul National University and worked for a local newspaper as a reporter for more than 20 years. He entered politics in the 1990s, taking several positions in the presidential office and then served as a ruling party lawmaker from 1996 until 2012.
The 72-year-old Lee is known as a close aide to Park, giving her advice while working as a member of the culture and communications committee at the National Assembly.
Park also appointed Baek Seung-joo, senior researcher at the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses (KIDA), as the vice defense minister, while Vice Chairman Choo Kyung-ho of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) was named the first vice finance minister and director of the finance ministry's budget office Lee Suk-joon was promoted to the second vice finance minister, presidential spokesman Yoon Chang-jung announced.
After graduating from the political school at Pusan National University in the country's southern port city of Busan, Baek built his career as researcher at the country's defense institutes including the KIDA. The 52-year-old Baek had worked for Park's transition committee.
First vice finance minister appointee Choo joined the government after passing the national administrative services exam in 1983 and has served several positions in the central government. Before joining the FSC, the country's financial regulator, in 2009, he served as the minister counselor for the South Korean mission to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Second vice finance minister appointee Lee also began his civil service career in 1984 after passing the national exam, and has served several key posts in finance and budget departments of the relevant ministries.
For the two vice ministers of the newly-created ministry of future creation and science, Park selected Lee Sang-mok, the chief of the Korean Federation of Science and Technology Societies, and Yoon Jong-lok, a science professor at Seoul's Yonsei University, according to the spokesman. Yoon served as the vice president of KT Corp., South Korea's top fixed-line and No. 2 mobile operator.
Son Jae-hak, who heads the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, was named vice minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries. Park revived the ministry, which was abolished in 2008 upon the inauguration of the former President Lee Myung-bak government.
Jeong Chan-woo, the vice chief of the Korea Institute of Finance, was appointed as the FSC vice chairman, and Koh Young-sun, senior researcher at the Korea Development Institute, was named second vice minister for the Prime Minister's Office.
The president made the selections based on whether candidates have expertise in their respective areas and if they are appropriate for realizing her philosophy on state affairs, Yoon said.
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