Barack Obama, early days and career bio
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August 4, 1961
...in Honolulu, Hawaii to Ann Dunham from Kansas and Barack Obama, Sr from Kenya. His parents separated when he was two years old, after which he was raised by his mother and grandparents.
Barack Obama in the Early Years
After living four years in Jakarta, Indonesia with his mother and stepfather, Barack returned to Honolulu at ten years of age to live with his grandparents. After that, life settled into a more typical American experience of school, parties and friends. Nicknamed Barry, he was known for having a big smile and a fledgling afro hairdo. He still has the smile.
Two years at Occidental College in Los Angeles were followed by two more at Columbia in New York City, some community work in Chicago, then on to Boston for a law degree from Harvard University. His rolling stone life finally came to a rest back at Chicago in 1991 where he married Michele Robinson and settled into a law practice. The party hat went into the closet, replaced by a vast assortment of ties.
But he didn't remain settled for long. By 1996 he was elected to the Illinois State Senate, and eight years later, to the United States Senate. Oh, and he got to make a speech at the Democratic National Convention that year which turned out pretty good.
Barack Obama in Recent Years
In case you ducked into one of those Cold War bomb shelters and just now came out, you might be interested to know Barack Obama was elected President of the United States in 2008.
It was not an easy job. An ailing economy needed to be cranked up, a war in Iraq needed to be wound down, people like Venezuela's Chavez gave him advice, and Iran's Ahmadinejad gave him a pain. He could be excused for reflecting on the words of Abraham Lincoln. When asked how he liked being president, Honest Abe told the story of a man who was being tarred and feathered and ridden out of town on a rail. A fellow in the crowd asked him how he liked it, and the man replied, "If it wasn’t for the honor of the thing, I'd rather walk."
On the bright side, Barack Obama's first inauguration party looked like it was arranged by People Magazine. There were singers, actors and celebrities as far as the eye could see. A lot of other people showed up too. Now that he's retired from the White House, he should have a promising career in show business -- if he could just learn to sing something beyond his favorite "Wang dang doodle". . . .
President Barack Obama inauguration crowd of people. Credit: Vermont Public Radio
Bruce Springsteen performs "The Rising" at Obama's Inaugural Concert here.
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