Barack H. Obama


President Barack Obama (1961– ; Columbia College 1983) was the 44th President of the United States. After graduating from Harvard Law School, Obama moved to Chicago, where he got his start in community organizing on the city’s South Side, working to help rebuild communities devastated by the closure of local steel plants. He has credited that experience as crucial to finding his identity—something that shaped his path to the White House.

"Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek."

Obama was elected to the Illinois State Senate in 1996. During his time in Springfield, he passed the first major ethics reform in 25 years, cut taxes for working families, and expanded health care for children and their parents. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2004. Barack Obama was sworn in as president on January 20, 2009, the nation's first african American president, and won reelection the following term. The president's legacy as a grassroots organizer inspired millions.