(Source: Wikimedia Commons)
An elementary school in California will be renamed as the Michelle Obama Elementary School. The decision to rename the former Wilson Elementary School after the former First Lady was unanimous amongst students, parents, and members of the community according to CNN. What is it about Michelle Obama that continues to inspire American citizens and citizens worldwide even after she’s left the White House? Let’s explore her impact pre and post White House to learn more.
The Former First Lady’s Lasting Impact
Michelle Obama first gained nationwide attention when her husband Barack Obama decided to run for President in 2008. Mrs. Obama had already earned quite the career accolades before she became the first African-American First Lady, having graduated from Princeton and Harvard Law School and worked diligently in the public sector of Chicago as well as advocating for the rights of the minorities and underprivileged groups.
Michelle Obama used her status of First Lady to continue helping others in positive ways. Notably, she started a vegetable garden on the South Lawn of the White House as part of her Let’s Move! campaign to encourage kids to eat healthy. The First Lady also supported the causes of military families, and was a noted figure behind the Let Girls Learn initiative, whose goal was to aid girls across the world to be able to have the chance to go to school and stay in school.
Although Michelle Obama made it quite clear that she never intended to run for public office, the former First Lady certainly won the popular vote, particularly after her now iconic “when they go low we go high” campaign speech she made for Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign. The clamor for a Michelle Obama presidential run was deafening but the lady in question preferred to stay out of politics. However her autobiography, “Becoming,” is easily on its way to becoming one of the best selling memoirs in history. (The audio version of her book was also nominated for a Grammy.)
Michelle Obama’s Legacy
The Obamas may have officially left the White House back in 2017 but their legacy is firmly cemented in the annals of American history. What makes Michelle Obama so remarkable is not just that she was the first African-American First Lady (although that is an outstanding feat of its own) but the fact that she created a role for herself outside of her position as Barack Obama’s wife.
While the couple from Chicago are legendary in how strong their relationship is and how they enhance each other, Michelle has crafted her own story, of becoming the Michelle Obama of today, the lady that inspires millions to work hard to achieve their goals no matter what shape, size, creed or color they are. Michelle Obama is a feminist icon, a woman who wasn’t and isn’t afraid to learn, love, and stand up for the rights of those who normally didn’t have a chance to be heard.
The Obamas continue to work for the people even after leaving office, starting their own production company and even doing a podcast. Michelle Obama has also made guest appearances on talk shows to promote her book and shown off her comedic chops.
She never cowered. She never hid her opinions. She continues to inspire to this very day. It’s no wonder the vote to rename the elementary school after Michelle Obama was unanimous. The name Michelle Obama is inspiring and will hopefully motivate future leaders to come forward and stand against bigotry, hate, and intolerance in order to create a better world for all.