Barack Obama

Former President Barack Obama was the 44th President of the United States of America, and the very first Black President of the U.S. He served two presidential terms in 2008 and 2012. Obama is a husband to Michelle Obama, father of two, and politician. 

Born and raised in Hawaii, Obama studied at both Columbia University and Harvard Law School. Barack Hussein Obama II was born into a mixed-race household, with his father being from Kenya and his mother being from Kansas. His biological father attended school at Harvard, though Obama did not not get to know him well; his mother and father split when he was just two years old.

Obama’s mother did remarry, and he had a half sister that he grew up with. Obama comments on his formative years, and how being an African American, especially in a dominantly white school, shaped his understanding of racism and what it means to be an African American. 

Obama moved to Chicago, Illinois in 1985 after finishing his undergraduate degree in Political Science, and began work as a community organizer. Shortly afterwards, he got involved in church and paid an emotional visit to Kenya to visit the graves of his biological father and paternal grandfather.

Obama writes that ““I saw that my life in America — the black life, the white life, the sense of abandonment I’d felt as a boy, the frustration and hope I’d witnessed in Chicago — all of it was connected with this small plot of earth an ocean away.”

Returning from Kenya, Obama went to Harvard and completed law school. After that, he returned to Chicago and worked as a civil rights lawyer and as a professor at the University of Chicago Law school. 

Barack Obama’s political career continued to flourish in Illinois, and he eventually went on to run for President of the United States. Serving two terms in office, Obama’s presidency is marked by strong and compassionate leadership. He is revered for his work in launching the Affordable Care Act, stimulating the economy, his support for alternative energy initiatives, and ending the war with Iraq. 

Barack Obama’s Black Moments:

  • 2009 Nobel Peace Prize for his actions during his first 100 days in office
  • Obama was elected the first African American editor of the Harvard Law Review
  • Grammy AWard for Best Spoken Word album in 2006 for autobiography, Dreams
  • 2004, Obama won the largest electoral victory in Illinois history with a 70% vote
  • No. 1 on both the New York Times and Amazon’s best-seller lists for The Audacity of Hope

RELATED BLACK MOMENT: Michelle Obama

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