CharlieYim_IWillWorkForNothing-low resHe found me in an old phone book. I found his life story so moving that I leapt up in joy when Dr. Chun Bin (“Call me Charlie!”) Yim said he would entrust the writing of his memoir to me.

The challenge was formidable. Charlie was a part of history: he was born in 1942 in Seoul, Korea near the end of decades-long Japanese colonialism and shortly before the devastating Communist invasion from the north that resulted in a still-divided Korea. After enduring hardships, hunger, harsh disappointments and great strife in his youth, he ultimately served courageously at the dangerous DMZ.

Charlie made history: he was selected as an early Peace Corps employee in the late 1960s training idealistic young Americans on their way to volunteer in Korea. Then he embarked upon amazing new chapters of his life in San Diego, where he not only achieved the American Dream – he nailed it!

Harnessing courage, creativity and the spirit of an entrepreneur, Charlie notched success after success in dozens of ventures ranging from businesses to shopping centers, hotels, real estate transactions and even one Warren-Buffett-style foray into the stock market. It’s no wonder that, now in his early 70s, when he visited the Social Security Administration office, the Director himself came out to shake his hand and declare, “Chun Bin Yim: On behalf of the United States Treasury, we thank you!”

The title of this bold entrepreneur and benevolent philanthropist’s memoir is as unique as he is: “I Will Work for Nothing.” Speaking little English and needing to support himself, Charlie used that promise – and his gumption – to obtain his first two jobs: gutting fish and cleaning restrooms.

Charlie hopes his book will inspire people to forge their own path and achieve their version of the American Dream. Helping Charlie tell his life story has been an important step in achieving mine.