Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Michelle : a biography by Liza Mundy

Liza Mundy is a staff writer at The Washington Post. In Michelle : a biography , she portrays Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama as funny and sharp-tongued, warm and blunt, empathic and demanding. Michelle was raised in a conventional two-parent home, her father was a city of Chicago water plant employee and Democratic precinct captain. Michelle attended Whitney Young High School, where she was on the honor roll four years, took advanced placement classes, was a member of the National Honor Society and served as student council treasurer. She went on to major in sociology and minor in African American studies at Princeton University. She obtained her law degree from Harvard Law School in 1988. Following law school, she was an associate at the Chicago office of the law firm Sidley Austin, where she first met her husband, Barack Obama. They have two daughters, Malia and Sasha, and Obamas are doing a great job raising two amazing young girls.

Michelle has held positions in the Chicago city government as an Assistant to the mayor, and as Assistant Commissioner of Planning and Development; Executive Director for the Chicago office of Public Allies, a non-profit organization encouraging young people to work on social issues in nonprofit groups and government agencies; Associate Dean of Student Services at the University of Chicago; executive director for community affairs and, beginning May, 2005, as Vice President for Community and External Affairs of the University of Chicago Hospitals. She served as a salaried board member of TreeHouse Foods, Inc., a major Wal-Mart supplier with whom she cut ties immediately after her husband made comments critical of Wal-Mart at an AFL-CIO forum. Michelle gave political speeches for her husband's presidential campaign at various locations. Early in the campaign, she exhibited her ironic humor and told anecdotes about the Obama family life. However, as the press began to emphasize her sarcasm, which did not translate well in the print media, she has toned it down.

In this carefully reported biography, Liza Mundy captures the complexity of this remarkable woman.

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