Michelle Obama gave a heartfelt speech at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Monday night. Her speech wove a tale of her upbringing and the life she now shares with Barack Obama and their two daughters, Malia Obama and Sasha Obama. She may have been trumped by Edward Kennedy but she was still a shining star as she spoke from the depths of her soul.
Michelle talked of the values that she and her husband share. She wanted people to glimpse the man she knows well and she also tried to convey that they are just ordinary people like the rest of us. White House official family portrait here.
Michelle Robinson was born in Chicago on January 17, 1964. She was raised in a conventional two parent home. Her parents, Frasier Robinson and Marian Robinson were middle class working folks. Her dad worked for the city water department and her mother was a secretary at a Spiegel catalog store. Her father died in 1991 and her mother takes care of the Obama children when Barack and Michelle are away.
She and her brother Craig attended Whitney Young High School, where Michelle graduated in 1981. She attended Princeton, majoring in sociology and African American studies. She graduated cum laude with a BA in 1985. She obtained her J.D. degree from Harvard Law School in 1988.
Michelle met Barack at the Sidley Austin law firm where she was working and he was interning. Because the two were the only black employees, she was assigned to mentor him and their relationship blossomed over time. The couple married in 1992 and have two daughters, Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7.
She later joined the public sector and worked in several Chicago government positions. In 1996 she became the Associate Dean of Student Services at the University of Chicago. She held that post until 2002 when she began working for the University of Chicago Hospitals where she became VP for Community and External Affairs. She still holds this post but initially scaled back to part time and is now on leave through the duration of the campaign. The Obama’s are now being joined on the trail by Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden. Biden family photos and bio available here.
Some segments of the media have tried to label Michelle an ‘angry black woman’ after her now infamous Milwaukee, Wisconsin campaign stump speech where she insinuated that she was proud of her country for the first time. Of the misrepresentation of her comments she said:
“Barack and I have been in the public eye for many years now, and we’ve developed a thick skin along the way. When you’re out campaigning, there will always be criticism. I just take it in stride, and at the end of the day, I know that it comes with the territory.”
Obama family photos below – click to enlarge.
Check out Barack Obama’s cool ‘body man’ Reggie Love.