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Leaders

Two women and one man pose for a photo. One woman has medium-dark skin tone, and the other two people have dark skin. Two of them wear shirts with the words "Afroclimate.com." They sit on a rock wall in front of dirt and greenery.
  • Changemakers
  • Sustainability

Find out how the 2023 cohort created a non-profit committed to a sustainable future for Africa, one entrepreneur at a time.

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Kori Coleman, a Black woman with a deep skin tone, stands in the middle of a four person string quartet. They are a range of medium to deep skin tones and are holding a viola, violin, and cello. All are wearing shades of brown. Credit: Seed Lynn
  • The Arts
  • Chicago

Ahead of her debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, hear how one Obama Leader leverages the power of music to educate, entertain, and heal her community.

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Michelle Obama sits in a circle with women with a range of light to deep skin tones and Michael Strautmanis. Mrs. Obama is wearing a multicolored dress and sits with her legs crossed. A sign in the background reads, “Obama Leadership Network.”
  • Michelle Obama
  • Africa

We marked the fifth anniversary of the Leaders program where it all began.

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Daniel Fairley II, a Black man with a light skin tone smiles at the camera. He has short black hair and glasses. He is wearing a light purple blazer and a dark purple hoodie.
  • Alumni
  • The Obama Administration

Meet an Obama Leader supporting Virginians in need.

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Ryan Pavel, a man with light skin tone, stands smiling in front of a sign that reads "Warrior-Scholar Project."
  • Education
  • USA

Meet 2023 United States Obama Leader Ryan Pavel, veteran, and CEO of Warrior-Scholar Project.

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Ziad Ahmed, a man with a medium skin tone, smiles at the camera. He has black hair and is wearing a red patterned jacket. He is sitting on an apple box. The background is brown.
  • Youth
  • USA

Learn how Ziad Ahmed built a successful company by listening to the next generation.

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Bethany Rivera Molinar, presents a workshop in front of eight others. Their backs are to the camera as they sit around a table. Bethany stands in front of a wall easel pad. She is wearing a Ciudad Nueva shirt and glasses.
  • USA
  • Changemakers

Learn how Bethany Rivera Molinar is transforming her Texas neighborhood through community work.

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Tom Twongyeirwe Junior stands in front of a board room full of Black people or a range of skin tones. He is wearing a blue button up and striped pants. A sign in the background reads, The Universal Coalition of Affirming Africans Uganda.
  • Equality
  • Africa

Progress for LGBTQ+ people in Uganda has been hindered by the current cultural and political landscape.

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The Obama "O" logo surrounded by a blue Greek "key" pattern, also known as a meander, with the words "Athens 2023" beneath it.
  • Event
  • Global Reach

Get a look inside the week-long leadership and cultural experience.

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On a sunny day, Sejong Youn, a man with a light medium skin tone, stands outside. He has short black hair and is wearing glasses and a denim button down. He has a closed lip smile and his arms are crossed.
  • Sustainability
  • Asia-Pacific

Obama Leader advocates for stronger climate policies

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President Obama sits at a table between two men and women with a range of skin tones and clothing styles. The President’s right arm is extended as he looks away from the camera.
  • Defending Democracy
  • Global Reach

This week in Berlin, Germany, President Obama sat down with 18 alumni of our leadership programs from across Europe for a roundtable conversation about the importance of nurturing democracy.

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Ornella Cosomati sits at a roundtable discussion. One person sits to her right and another in front of her. Their back is to the camera. She is wearing glasses and a black suit.
  • Sustainability
  • Europe

Obama Leader improves sustainability policies in Europe

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Joseph Nguthiru, a Black man with a deep skin tone, smiles at the camera as he holds a biodegradable package wrapper made from water hyacinth. He is wearing a green shirt that reads, “Simply do good.”
  • Sustainability
  • Africa

Obama Foundation Leader transforms aquatic weeds into biodegradable plastic.

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Elpida Kokkota smiles as she stands next to Jame Kalekye Mutambya, a Black woman with a deep skin tone and short hair, and Mercy Musomi, a Black woman with a deep skin tone and short curly hair. Jame holds a peace sign as they stand in front of a booth at a Naroibi cultural market. In the background is art and handmade bags.
  • Education
  • Europe

Find out how Elpida is making a difference for female entrepreneurs in Kenya.

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Ireen Chikatula poses for a photo with 11 teenage students. They have a deep skin tone and some are wearing school uniforms. Ireen Chikatula holds a sign that reads, “Because girls matter!”
  • Equality
  • Africa

Learn how Ireen is improving the livelihood of women and girls in Zambia’s rural communities.

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Emma Minimbi, a woman with a medium deep skin tone, stands behind a podium at the United Nations Development Programme Stakeholders Consultation on Sorcery Accusations Related Violence at Loloata Island. She has a braided bun and is wearing a face mask under her chin. In the background is signage that reads, “Initiated by the European Union and the United Nations and United Nations Development Programme.”
  • Equality
  • Asia-Pacific

See how Emma uses the law and the power of community to help eradicate gender-based violence.

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A young fairly sized women with deep skin, a small high top curly fro, and a small earing on her left ear holds a soccer ball. She is wearing a red addidas shirt, black adidas pants, and pick purple shoes. The setting is a rocky dirt field with short purple cones on the ground. A few deeper toned young girls with young hair to the side cut out by the frame. There is a rusted goal also cut out on the same side behind them.
  • Girls Opportunity Alliance
  • Africa

Thuba’s story

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  • Defending Democracy
  • Europe
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 The camera focuses on a man and woman with medium skin tones as they engage in conversation in a room of people
  • Presidential History
  • Programs

Five years later, a look back at President Obama’s farewell address and the call to action that drives our mission at the Foundation

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In a gray suit and blue tie and a black mask, Rachid Ennassiri, leans to his left with President Obama nearby, leaning to the right. President Obama wears a black mask and has his arms crossed.
  • Sustainability
  • Barack Obama

After delivering remarks during COP26 in Glasgow, President Obama sat down with a group of emerging leaders from around the world who are doing their part to protect the planet. Check out what they discussed.

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President Barack Obama talks with the inaugural class of Obama Scholars during their program kickoff retreat in Chicago, IL on Tuesday August 28, 2018.
  • Global Reach
  • Changemakers

On President Obama’s 60th birthday, get to know 60 changemakers in our network who are paving the way for a brighter future

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Obama Leader Bhavagaya Bakshi looks to camera with her C the Signs co-founder.
  • Stories
  • Health & Wellbeing

On World Cancer Day, get to know Obama Leader Bhavagaya “Bea” Bakshi, who is working tirelessly to save lives by detecting cancer in its earliest stages.

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Skye and Tim smile in front of a colorful background at the Leaders: Asia-Pacific convening, 2019.
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Stories

The story behind how leaders Skye Riggs and Tim Middlemiss founded Ripple—an organization that empowers young adults in Australia to take action in their communities.

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A group of doctors stand together
  • Africa
  • Changemakers

To mark the close of their program year, Obama Leaders from across the African continent volunteered to design and implement collaborative service projects that positively impacted their local communities.

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President Obama participates in a service project to commemorate Mandela Day with Obama Foundation Leaders in Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Africa
  • Changemakers

We spoke to six of our Nigerian Obama Leaders to learn more about how they've come together to protest brutality and corruption in the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS.

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The Obama Foundation Logo
  • Take Action
  • Michelle Obama

In a candid conversation with Obama Foundation Scholars and Fellows earlier this summer, Mrs. Obama encouraged us all to address racial injustice in our own communities by having hard conversations at our own kitchen tables, in our workplaces, and in our s

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A graphic displays a quote from President Obama that reads: "If there was ever a time in which community mobilization, organization, social networks, trust building, mutual support and aid were necessary now is the time. The whole point of forming the Obama Foundation and looking to build the Obama Presidential Center on the South Side was to foster those kinds of values and to promote that kind of unity and sense of common purpose...I've always believed that government is critical but it is not enough. Change comes from the bottom up."
  • Watch
  • Health & Wellbeing

Take a more detailed look at the Foundation’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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President Obama participates in a roundtable meeting with local leaders at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, on Friday, May 31, 2019.

Please credit "The Obama Foundation" when posting. The photographs may not be manipulated in any w
  • Watch
  • Global Reach

It’s been a busy week for us at the Foundation! On Tuesday, we hosted a roundtable conversation in Bogotá with President Obama and a small group of Colombian changemakers who are working tirelessly to transform their communities.

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President Obama participates in a roundtable discussion with young leaders in Bogota, Colombia on May 29, 2019. Bogota, Colombia. Credit: The Obama Foundation

Please credit "The Obama Foundation" when posting. The photographs may not be manipulated in any
  • Event
  • Global Reach

From Cali to Quibdó, Medellín to María la Baja, the 11 emerging leaders President Obama met with yesterday in Bogotá are carrying forward the hard work of change across Colombia.

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A young boy with a light skin tone and black hair wears a red shirt. Next to him is a woman with a light skin tone, blue hair, and glasses wearing business attire. Lastly, another woman with a light skin tone and red glasses wears a plaid shirt. The three of them stand in front of a historic building smiling. Below the image, a text reads "Ana Matia Gonzalez-Forero"
  • Newsletter
  • Changemakers

This Mother's Day, we sent the message below to our full email list lifting up the incredible moms in our programs who are making their communities a better place for all—and raising the next generation of changemakers at the same time.

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A woman with a medium-deep skin tone and short blonde hair stands holding and showing a menstral cup to a man with a deep skin tone under a white tent.
  • Scholars
  • Global Reach

When Robert Katende from the Leaders: Africa program met Vanessa Paranjothy, an Obama Scholar at Columbia University, at the 2018 Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago, they discovered an opportunity to team up to help their communities.

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Please credit "The Obama Foundation" when posting. The photographs may not be manipulated in any way, and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products, or promotions that in any way suggest approval or endorsement
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Event

Get to know the 21 leaders from 16 countries and territories across the Asia Pacific who are helping us design future programming in the region.

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President Barack Obama holds a press conference at the APEC summit at the JW Marriott Hotel in Honolulu, Hawaii, Sunday, Nov. 13, 2011.
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Global Reach

With the help of Foundation supporters and other key stakeholders from the Hawaiʻi community, 21 leaders from across the Asia-Pacific will gather in Hawaiʻi to help design future Obama Foundation programming in the region.

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Amsterdam scenery.
  • Europe
  • Watch

President Obama heard from 11 emerging leaders working as civil servants, organizers and more from across Europe for a conversation on civic and engagement and to better understand how the Obama Foundation can can equip them with the tools and resources th

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A man with a deep skin tone talking on stage
  • Watch
  • Africa

Today, Kofi Annan, pioneer and peacemaker, passed away at 80. As we mourn the passing of our friend, we wanted to share some of the wisdom he offered just one month ago at a panel during our Africa: Leaders convening.

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On Mandela Day, Wednesday, July 18, the Obama Foundation and The Honeycomb Project team up on the shores of Lake Michigan for a sunset beach clean up. We measure beach health, clear the boardwalk, collect garbage, and make a positive impact at Rainbow in t
  • Newsletter
  • Community Engagement

As the 200 emerging African leaders we brought together as part of our Leaders: Africa convening to exchange ideas on how to create positive change in their communities carried out a service project to celebrate Mandela Day, we did the same right here in C

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