Barack Obama is the 44th President of the United States and the first African-American to ever hold the office. Although Obama was only 48 years old when he assumed the office of president, he has a relatively long history of public service both in the Illinois State Senate and in Congress as an Illinois senator. The Barack Obama family tree includes an African-American father from Kenya and a Caucasian mother from Kansas. His parents separated when Obama was just two years old, and Obama only recalls seeing his father only once in Hawaii in 1971. His father died in an automobile accident in 1982. The Barack Obama family history continued in Indonesia, when her mother moved them overseas with her second husband and lived there from the time Obama was six until he turned 10. The Barack Obama genealogy then moves to Hawaii, where Obama was sent to live with his grandparents, and his mother also returned a year later to live with him and her parents for a number of years.
Obama has spent most of his adult life working in public service, from a community organizer prior to attending law school to an attorney championing civil rights in after graduating from Harvard Law School. Obama's legislative career began in 1997 in the state senate, and it progressed into the national arena, where he was ultimately elected to the office of the president in 2008.
Barack Obama's interesting genealogy begins in Honolulu, Hawaii, on August 4, 1961, when Obama was born to Ann Dunham, making him the first president to ever be born in the state of Hawaii. Much of Barack Obama's family history takes place in Hawaii, until Dunham met an Indonesian student attending college in Hawaii, named Lolo Soetoro. When Soetoro was forced to return to Indonesia in 1967, Obama and his mother moved to Indonesia with him and remained there until Obama turned 10. At that time, Dunham sent Obama back to the states to live with his maternal grandparents in Hawaii because she feared for his safety and was concerned about the quality of education he was receiving. A short time later, Obama's mother and sister joined him in Hawaii, although his mother eventually returned to Indonesia to work as anthropological field worker. Dunham did return to Hawaii one final time, in 1994, before dying from ovarian cancer just one year later. The Barack Obama family tree is a melting pot of individuals from different areas and cultures, that Obama credits in part for making him the person that he is today.
Obama attended Columbia University, where he studied political science and international relations. After graduating from Columbia in 1983, he worked in the corporate world for a short time - first at the Business International Corporation and then at New York Public Interest Research Group. Obama was then hired as director of the Developing Communities Project in Chicago, where he worked for three years, setting up programs in job training, college preparation and tenants' rights. Obama then attended Harvard Law School, where he graduated and went on to teach at the University of Chicago Law School for the next 12 years. During this time, Obama also met and married Michelle Robinson, and the couple now has two children: Malia and Sasha.
In 1996, Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate, where he worked to reform ethics and health care laws. His bipartisan approach to issues won him many fans, and he was re-elected to his state post in 1998 and 2002. Obama also began to explore the possibility of a U.S. Senate run about the time his third term in the state senate began, and he began researching the possibility. In 2005, Obama was elected to the U.S. Senate, where he served for the next three years. His work like the Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act and the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 won him fans and notoriety in the Senate, and it prepared him to launch his presidential campaign in 2008. In November, 2008, Obama resigned from the Senate to prepare for his presidential term that would begin in January of the following year.
The road to the White House was not an easy one for Obama. The primary election was a battle against Hillary Clinton, the candidate that most Democrats assumed would be the favorite for the party nomination. However, Clinton ended her campaign in June, 2008, and she endorsed Obama for the general election. Obama ran against long-time Senator John McCain and defeated campaign in the general election in 2008, winning 52.9% of the popular vote and 365 electoral votes. President Obama also announced his plans to run for re-election during the 2012 campaign.
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