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Barack Obama Biography

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Barack Obama's Bio
Barack Obama Biography

Barack Obama was born on August 4, 1961 at the Kapi'olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii.

His mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, was an American, and his father was Barack Obama, Sr., a member of the Luo tribe in Kenya (at that time called Kenya Colony, as it was a protectorate of Great Britain). Ann’s first name, Stanley, was a family name, she went by the name Ann.

Barack’s parents met in 1960, when they both attended a Russian language class at the University of Hawaii. They married on February 2, 1961. However, they separated shortly thereafter, and would divorce in 1964. Barack’s father remarried and returned to Kenya where he became a senior governmental economist, before dying at the age of 46 in 1982 in a car accident. Barack has several half-brothers and a half-sister on his father’s side of the family.
After her divorce, Ann met and married Lolo Soetoro, an Indonesian student who was also attending college in Hawaii. She would have one child with Soetoro, Maya (who is Barack’s half-sister). Maya is a schoolteacher in Hawaii.
In 1967, Suharto came to power in Indonesia, and Indonesian students studying abroad returned to that country. Ann and her son accompanied her husband to Jakarta, where Obama lived and went to school from the age of six to ten.
In 1971, Obama returned to Honolulu to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Armour Dunham. There, he attended Punahou School, a private college preparatory school, from the fifth grade until his graduation from high school in 1979.

His mother returned to Hawaii in 1972, and remained until 1977, pursuing post-graduate work at the University of Hawaii. She then returned to Indonesia to carry out anthropologist studies.

After Barack graduated from high school in 1979, he moved to Los Angeles to attend Occidental College. In 1981 he transferred to Columbia University in New York City. There, he majored in political science, specializing in international relations. He graduated with a B.A. in 1983, at the age of 22.
Obama then worked for several years as a community activist. He began his career by spending a year at the Business International Corporation, then moving on to the New York Public Interest Research Group, and finally becoming director of the Developing Communities Project (DCP), a church-based community organization. Here, he helped set up various programs to help the community.
In mid-1988, Obama traveled overseas, visiting Europe and then Kenya, where he met many of his paternal relatives for the first time. After returning to the US, he entered Harvard Law School. During his summers, he returned to Chicago, where he worked as a summer associate at various law firms.
In 1991, at the age of 30, Obama graduated with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) magna cum laude from Harvard. His time at Harvard had brought him the attention of the media. In particular, when he was elected as the first black president of the Harvard Law Review, he was given a publishing contract and advance for a book, which was to have been on race relations. However, the concept evolved until it was a memoir of his life, and was published in mid-1995 under the title Dreams from My Father.

Obama moved into the education field. He became a Lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 1996, and a Senior Lecturer from 1996 to 2004, teaching the subject of constitutional law.

Also in 1992, Obama married Michelle Robinson, whom he had met while they worked for the same law firm. (Michelle also studied law at Harvard University.) The couple married in October 1992, and they have two daughters, Malia Ann (born 1998) and Natasha (called Sasha, born 2001).

In 1993, Obama joined Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland, a 13-attorney law firm that specialized in civil rights litigation and neighborhood economic development.
After having been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, Barack’s mother returned to Hawaii in 1994 and died there a year later. A Ph.D, she had worked with the United States Agency for International Development, the Ford Foundation, and Women's World Banking, before her death at the age of 53.
Obama left Davis, Miner, Barnhilll & Galland in 2004.

Politics: the Illinois Senate

Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate in 1996, representing the 13th District, which at that time spanned Chicago South Side neighborhoods from Hyde Park-Kenwood south to South Shore and west to Chicago Lawn.

Once elected, Obama gained bipartisan support for legislation reforming ethics and health care laws. He sponsored legislation to increase tax credits for low-income workers, negotiate welfare reform, and promote increased subsidies for childcare.

He was reelected in 1998. In 2000, he ran for the U.S. House of Representatives, but lost the Democratic primary to four-term incumbent Bobby Rush . He won relelection to the Illinois senate in 2002.

In 2004, Obama ran for the U.S. Senate, and was elected. He subsequently resigned from the Illinois Senate to take his new post.

Obama’s victory in the election made him a “rising star” within the national Democratic Party. People started speculating that the presidency might lie in his future. His memoir, Dreams from My Father, was reissued.
U.S. Senator: 2005–2008

Obama was sworn in to his new position on January 4, 2005. At this time, he was the only African-American member of the senate.

On February 10, 2007, Obama announced his candidacy for president of the United States.

First he had to win the Democrat party’s nomination, defeating Hilary Clinton in the process. He chose Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his vice presidential running mate, and then began campaigning against Republican challenger John McCain and his running mate, former Alaskan governor Sarah Palin.
In November, Obama was elected president of the United States – the first African American to do so. He won 365 electoral votes to 173 for McCain, and had 52.9% of the popular vote to 45.7% for McCain.

First Hundred Days

American presidents are generally given a “report card” after their first hundred days.
Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th President on January 20, 2009. In his first few days in office Obama issued a variety of executive orders and presidential memoranda. For example, he directed the U.S. military to develop plans to withdraw troops from Iraq, and ordered the closing of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp. He also reversed George W. Bush's ban on federal funding to foreign establishments that allow abortions.

On February 17, 2009, Obama signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion economic stimulus package which was planned to help the United States economy recover from the recession that had hit in 2008.
Obama authorized the government takeover of the car companies General Motors and Chrysler, and also set into motion the “Cash for Clunkers” program, in which Americans could turn in used cars and receive rebates on new ones that had better gas mileage.

Obama also started a program to outreach to the Muslim world, while at the same time retaining the United States ties with Israel, a program that has had limited success to date.

Obama’s signature program is health care reform, which is still struggling through the Senate to find some form that both parties can agree on.
In October 2009, Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."

See also: Barack Obama Quotes, Famous Authors, Famous Americans, Famous Politicians Famous Black People, Famous Presidents, Famous Leos, Famous People Born in August
Famous American Men, Famous People Born in the Sixties, Famous African Americans
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Obama Biography

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