Barack Obama Facts

Most political figures understand that many untruths will be spread about them over which they have little control. No president has endured this frustration more than Barack Obama. The following Barack Obama facts will help you to learn more about America's 44th President and gain insights into why he chose American politics as a career.

Obama's parents

Barack was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on August 4, 1961. His mother, Ann Dunham, was originally from Wichita, Kansas, and his father, Barack Obama, Sr., was born in Nyanza Province, Kenya. After his grandparents moved with his mother to Hawaii, she met Obama, Sr. when they were both students at the University of Hawaii. Their baby son was born six months after their marriage on February 2, 1961, and they separated only two years later and eventually divorced.

Barack's early life

Barack's mother remarried Lolo Soetoro in 1965, and a year later, they both relocated with him to his home in Jakarta, Indonesia. Eventually fearing for her son's safety after violent incidents erupted in Indonesia, Dunham sent 10-year-old Barack back to Hawaii to further his education and live with his maternal grandparents. Eventually, his mother and half-sister, Maya Soetoro, also returned to Hawaii. Barack was enrolled at the prestigious Punahou Academy where he excelled at basketball and graduated with academic honors in 1979.

Higher education

Obama studied for two years at Occidental College in Los Angeles before transferring to Columbia University in New York City where he graduated in 1983 with a degree in political science. He worked for two years in the business sector before moving to Chicago in 1985 to take a job as a South Side community organizer for low-income residents. During this period, he undertook an emotional trip to Kenya hoping to reconnect with his father's roots. He returned renewed, entered Harvard Law School in 1988, was elected the first African-American editor of the Harvard Law Review, and graduated magna cum laude in 1991. He returned to Chicago as a civil rights lawyer and joined the firm of Miner, Barnhill & Galland while also teaching at the University of Chicago Law School.

Barack and Michelle

Obama met his wife, Michelle, at the Sidley & Austin law firm in Chicago where she was already an associate. She was assigned as his advisor during a summer internship at the firm. They soon began dating, and the location of their first kiss has been memorialized by a plaque outside a Chicago shopping center that features a photo of the couple kissing. Married on October 3, 1992, they moved to Chicago's South Side in Kenwood and their two daughters, Malia (1998) and Sasha (2001) were born.

Obama enters politics

In 1995, Obama published his autobiography entitled, Dreams From My Father:A Story of Race and Inheritance, that was well received by the literary world. Encouraged to run for the Illinois State Senate as a Democrat in 1996, he won the election and worked with leaders in both parties in drafting legislation on ethics, improvements in health care services and early childhood education for children from low-income families, among other law making accomplishments. His unsuccessful run for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000 led to his successful run for the U.S. Senate in 2004. He served two terms as a Senator from Illinois before running for President in 2008.

Other personal Barrack Obama facts reveal that he is a romantic husband who often gives the First Lady flowers, loves to play ScrabbleR and has read all the Harry Potter books to his daughters.

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