Barack Obama


Tribune News Service

FORTY FOUR. Former President Barack Obama made history as the first African American president of the United States. During his time in office, one of the Obama’s administration focuses was affordable health care. In his second term he focused on climate change and the environment.

Barack Hussein Obama II is a recognizable figure worldwide. Obama became the first African American to assume the United States presidency in 2008.

His life prior to the presidency and his Illinois senate seat epitomizes humble beginnings that constitute the American Dream. He was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 4, 1961 to Kenyan immigrant Barack Obama Sr. and Kansas-native Ann Dunham.

Despite hardships in his life, like facing abandonment from his father when he was two-years old and being separated from his mother and half-sister in Indonesia out of fear for his safety, Obama excelled in all that he did.

One of only three African Americans at his high school, he excelled at basketball and graduated with honors. He eventually attended Harvard Law School in 1988, and became the first African American president of the Harvard Law Review.

At the Chicago Law firm of Sidley Austin, he met young lawyer Michelle Robinson, the woman who he would one day marry. In 1995, Obama published an autobiography entitled “Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance” which received praise from literary phenoms like Toni Morrison.

Equipped with sharpness and a strong advocacy platform, Obama eventually found his way into politics and earned an Illinois senate seat.

Obama’s keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention launched him into the national spotlight, paving the beginning of his presidential race.