Barack Hussein Obama is the 44th president of the United States of America. He is a former president of the United States of America and is married to his wife and former First Lady Michelle Obama.
He was born in Hawaii, USA and raised by his mother after his parents divorced. He attended the famous Harvard Law School, became the first African American to chair the Harvard Law Review. He is a Lawyer, Politician, Writer, Author and Law professor by profession.
Early Life and Education
Barack Obama was born on the 4th of August 1961 to his parents who lived in Honolulu, Hawaii. However, at one time, he spent some part of his childhood in Washington State.
When he was 2 years old, his parents divorced and went separate ways, his father returning to Kenya. His father once came to see, but later died in an auto crash.
His mother moved with him to Indonesia having remarried and they spent four years in Indonesia. There he attended St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School, known as Sekolah Katolik Santo Fransiskus Asisi in Indonesia.
In 1971, Obama had to return to where he was born, Honolulu to stay with his maternal grandparents. Having started school at the age of six, in Honolulu, he attended the Punahou School and graduated in 1979. By 1981, he had successfully completed his freshman and sophomore years at Occidental College in Los Angeles.
His father moved over to Massachusetts to attend Harvard University and pursue a pH scale.D when he was still a child while in 1965, His mother Ann Dunham married Yi Soetoro, a University of Hawaii student from Dutch East Indies. When they moved over to Indonesia, his half-sister Maya Soetoro nanogram was born in 1970.
See also: Top 10 Richest Women in Nigeria
He went to New York for his junior and senior year at the Columbia University, where he graduated in 1983. Thereafter, he went to study law at the Harvard Law School, graduating in 1991.
After graduating from the Harvard Law School, he became a lecturer, teaching constitutional law for twelve years at the University Of Chicago Law School. There he was a lecturer from 1992 to 1996, later rising to senior lecturer.
He specialized in civil rights litigation while lecturing, working in a large law firm; Miner Barnhill and Galland.
Obama served a senator in 2005. He was Illinois state senator, emerging victorious in the 2004 General Elections. He won 70% of the votes available. He earned $174,000 yearly.
He sponsored a law that increased tax credits for low-income workers, he negotiated welfare reform and promoted increased subsidies for childcare.
While serving as senator, he was able to co-sponsor two initiatives, Secure America and the Orderly Immigration Act.
Having served as senator from 2005 to 2007, he stepped down to contest for the United States president.
He became popular in the United State when he presented the main speech at the national conference of his party in 2004, before being elected as a senator on 3 January 2005.
In January 2009, he was sworn in as the 44th president of the United States of America.
He was the Democratic nominee in the party, having to beat Hilary Clinton. He defeated Republican nominee John McCain, getting 365 electoral votes against McCain’s 173 electoral votes. On his second tenure in 2012, he beat Republican nominee Mitt Romney. At the end of two terms in 2017, he stepped down.
Some of His work
- He helped recover the economy from the recession and signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion economic stimulus package which included increased federal spending for health care, infrastructure, education, various tax breaks, and incentives.
- During his State of the Union Adress, He spoke on the need for innovation economics to make the United States more competitive globally.
- He also signed the Budget Control Act in order to control government spending and prevent the government from defaulting on its financial obligations.
- He authorized a military raid (Operation Neptune Spear), on the location of Osama bin Laden, the founder of al-Qaeda, in Pakistan. This operation was conducted by United States Navy SEALs on the 1 May 2011. This led to the death of bin Laden and the seizure of papers, computer drives and disks from the hideout compound.
- Supported same-sex marriage, woman’s right on health decisions.
- He subsidized college education more affordable for many students.
- President Barack is a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, hence the 4th US President to receive the award and the 3rd to receive it while in office.
- While in office, he was able to sign into law the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay act of 2009 which altered the statute of limitations for equal pay lawsuits. Also within the first 100 days of his office, he ordered the closing of Guantanamo Bay.
In January of 2009, Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th United States President, serving two terms until 2017. Within his first 100 days in office he had. He also supported some rights like the legalization of same-sex marriage, crime prevention act.
Also at his final day in office, he worked on over 1900 commutations like the Chelsea Manning and commutations for non-violent drug offenders.
While he served as president he was on a yearly salary of $ 400,000 also he had access to a $150,000 expense account, a $100,000 tax-free travel account and $20,000 entertainment budget.
Author and Writer/Book Sales
As a writer and author, Obama has made a lot of money and fortune from the sale of his books, even more than his salaries while serving in office.
One of his books, the first “Dreams of my Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance” which he wrote in 1995 increased his fortunes up to $2 million from $200,000 in 2005. This came after he became more famous in 2004 from his speech at DNC. The book was later republished in 2005 and he received over $800,000 in advance and over $370,000 in royalties.
His first book was named in the top 100 non-fiction books by Time Magazine. The audio version of his first book won him a Grammy award for the best-spoken word album. Currently, Barack Obama receives $3.75 for hardcover copies sold and $1.12 for paperback copies sold.
His second book titled “The Audacity of Hope” written in 2006 generated $4.2 million, with the sale of millions of copies. He was said to receive $258,000 in 2012, $104,000 in 2013 from book royalties.
Generally, from 2005 to 2016, Obama has earned $15.6 million both in advances and royalties from his books “The Audacity of Hope” and “Of Thee, I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters” and royalties for “Dreams From My Father,” according to Forbes.
Also last year, together with Michelle, they signed book deals worth at least $60 million.
His wife Michelle’s memoir, “Becoming,” which was published in November 2018 sold more than 2 million copies for the first 15 days. Also, profits generated from the sales are yet to be disclosed.
Career Highlights and Quotes
Obama has received lots of Awards in his career such as
- NAACP Image Award- Chairman’s Award 2005.
- In 2007 He received the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work.
- 2012; 2008 – Time’s Person Of The Year
- The Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Awards for Abridged audiobook version of Dreams from my Father
- 2008 Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Awards for the abridged audiobook version of the Audacity of Hope.
- 2013 – NME Award For Hero Of The Year.
- 2009 Nobel Peace Prize
- 2017 John F Kennedy Profile in Courage Award
- Obama also holds Honorary Doctorate of Laws recognitions from 14 universities.
“If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep walking, eventually you’ll make progress.” – Barack Obama
“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.” – Barack Obama
“America isn’t Congress, America isn’t Washington, America is the striving immigrant who starts a business, or the mom who works two low-wage jobs to give her kid a better life. America is the union leader and the CEO who put aside their differences to make the economy stronger.” – Barack Obama
“Our big problem right now is politics, can’t even get it out of football.” – Barack Obama
Family and Personal Life
Barack Obama is married to Michelle Obama and they have two daughters, Malia (born July 4, 1998) and Sacha (June 10, 2001). They met while he was working as a summer associate at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin in June 1989. They started dating in 1991 and married on October 3, 1992.
However, Barack Obama comes from an extended family of the Kenyan (African) and English ancestry.
His mother Ann Durham married Yi Soetoro. Hence Obama has lots of brothers and sisters from his mother and father’s side. In his extended family are half-sisters, half-brothers, stepmothers.
Some of his brothers are Malik Abongo Obama, Malik Abongo Obama, Mark Okoth Obama Ndesandjo, Mark Okoth Obama, George Obama, David Ndesandjo (half-brother), while his sisters are Auma Obama Barack Obama, Auma Obama, Maya Soetoro-Ng, Maya (half-sister).
His mother reportedly died in 1995 from ovarian and uterine cancer after specializing in economic anthropology and rural development. She obtained her Ph.D. degree from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa.
In her memory, Obama said
, “The Values she taught me to continue to be my touchstone when it comes to how I go about the world of politics”.
Some Facts About Barack Obama
- He loved poetry writing and used to write poetry as a young man in love.
- His first name Barack means “one who is blessed” in Swahili.
- In his childhood days, while growing in Indonesia, he had a pet ape named Tata.
- Obama has admitted he taking in drugs like marijuana and cocaine as a teenager.
- He was nicknamed “O’Bomber”, due to his basketball-playing skills in high school.
- One thing he loved very much was comics. He is said to have read every Harry Potter book and collections, including Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comics.
- His childhood nickname was “Barry” and has been addressed by the name. People started calling him his full name during his university days.
- He has four identical pairs of black size 11 shoes.
Barack Obama has an estimated net worth of $40 million. However, according to the New York Post, his fortunes together with his wife is estimated at $135 million.
In addition, President Obama makes negligible amounts of money from stocks, dividends, and bonds. He has assets in 3 financial funds, each worth between $50,000 and $400,000. He is also under a mouthwatering paid speeches delivery contract with Crown Publishing.
According to the Forbes magazine, he has made $20 million from 2005 till date. From his time in the Senate till the end of his presidency, from his book royalties, and investments.
Having earned $400,000 a year as a president for and eight years, he currently earns a yearly pension o $200,000 as a former president.
Away from the presidency and book sales, the couple recently signed a production deal with Netflix, this is estimated at $50 million, according to The New York Post.
He also makes lots of money from public speaking. It is reported that he has made over $400,000 from public speaking since leaving office.
His wife makes up to $225,000 also from public speaking.
In 2017, he made $800,000 from two speeches, the Northern Trust Corporation Carlyle Group also he made $1.2 million from three talks to Wall Street firms in 2017.
American University estimated that the couple could make up to $242.5 million in their post-presidency life.
Here are some of their expenses
In 2007, the couple purchased Bright Directions age-based growth plans, these plans worth range from $50,000 to $100,000. It was used to pay for Malia’s and Sasha’s college education.
In real estate, they made an investment in real estate. When they left the White House, they purchased an 8,200-square-foot mansion in Washington, DC, for $8.1 million.
It is reportedly the second-most-expensive home in the neighborhood, behind Jeff Bezos’ former textile museum turned mansion.
They also own an apartment in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood. This apartment was bought for $1.65 million in 2005. They took out a $1.3 million mortgage on the home and now valued at $2.5 million.
As philanthropists, much of their money go to charity. From 2009 to 2015, they gave out about $1.1 million to charity, according to Forbes.
These were distributed to mostly African-American, veterans, disaster relief, homelessness and housing, and health. Also More than half of their donations went to organizations for children.
Obama donated all the post-tax profits from his children’s book, “Of Thee I Sing,” to provide scholarships for children of wounded and fallen soldiers. The donations totaled $392,000 from 2009 to 2015.
In his final year, the couple gave out than $64,000, or about of their income, to 34 charities as reported by Time magazine, citing tax returns.
His most important/ biggest donation was his $1.4 million Nobel Peace Prize award in 2009. He gave out all of the proceeds to multiple charities.