True to the values of empathy and service that his mother instilled in him, Barack had put law school on hold after college and moved to Chicago.
Besides his native English, Obama speaks Indonesian at the conversational level, which he learned during his four childhood years in Jakarta.
Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, grew up in Wichita, Kansas, where her father worked on oil rigs during the Depression.
Obama enrolled in the esteemed Punahou Academy, excelling in basketball and graduating with academic honors in 1979.
Obama published his autobiography in 1995 'Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance'.
He has worked as a civil rights attorney in Chicago and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School.
And served three terms representing the 13th district in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004.
After an unsuccessful bid against the Democratic incumbent for a seat in the United States House of Representatives in 2000, Obama ran for United States Senate again in 2004.
Where he became a community organizer with a church-based group that was dedicated to improving living conditions in poor neighborhoods.
Obama once said the three men he admired the most were Mahatma Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln, and Martin Luther King, Jr.
There, he worked on the South Side as a community organizer for low-income residents.
After law school, Obama returned to Chicago to practice as a civil rights lawyer.
He helped organise voter registration drives during Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign.
Obama became chairman of the Illinois Senate's Health and Human Services Committee.
Obama achieved celebrity status after his speech to the Democratic National Convention in 2004, launching what has been called 'Obamamania'.
In 2004 Barack Obama became only the third African-American elected to the U.S. Senate since the Reconstruction.
In 2000, Obama made an unsuccessful Democratic primary run for the U. S. House of Representatives seat held by four-term incumbent candidate Bobby Rush.
In the 2004 Democratic primary, he won 52 percent of the vote, defeating multimillionaire businessman Blair Hull and Illinois Comptroller Daniel Hynes.
Obama was the first to raise the threat of avian flu on the Senate floor.
Obama's father, Barack Obama, Sr., was born of Luo ethnicity in Nyanza Province, Kenya.
He then transferred to Columbia University in New York, graduating in 1983 with a degree in political science.
He was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on August 4, 1961.
He entered Harvard Law School in 1988.
His presidential campaign began in February 2007.
He was inaugurated as president on January 20, 2009.
He was invited to deliver the keynote speech in support of John Kerry at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston.
Obama had won the election in 1996 for the Illinois State Senate as a Democrat.
Michelle has been a steady figure by her husband all long. The couple have two daughters- Malia, born in 1999, and Sasha, born in 2001.
Michelle Obama said he successfully quit in early 2010.
As much as a President, Obama makes sure he is a great father and a perfect husband as well.
He married Michelle Michelle Robinson in 1992. they had met in the law firm he was working in.
Obama studied at Occidental College in Los Angeles for two years.
Obama is a well known supporter of the Chicago White Sox.
He had worked in Baskin Robbins in his youth and thus hates ice-cream now!
Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States.
In October, the same year, Obama was named the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate.
His second book, 'The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream', was published in October 2006.
Obama is a Christian and a former member of the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. He has never been a Muslim.
Obama was known as 'Barry' in his youth, but asked to be addressed with his given name during his college years.
Obama's race against Alan Keyes in 2004 marked the first time in U.S. history that two African-Americans ran as major party nominees for a Senate seat. Obama beat Keyes by the widest margin for a Senate race in Illinois history.
He plays basketball, a sport he participated in as a member of his high school's varsity team.
In the 2008 presidential election, he defeated Republican nominee John McCain.
Obama's youthful appeal, his social networking on the Internet, and even his texting both promoted awareness of his campaign and created a loyal following. His historic use of the Internet will likely act as a template for future presidential elections.
Neil Young mentions Barack Obama in the lyric to his 2006 song 'Lookin' for a Leader'.
After working in the business sector for two years, Obama moved to Chicago in 1985.
The first amongst equals hits his half century today and we wish him happy birthday through this half century tribute.
He won election to the U.S. Senate in Illinois in November 2004.
After a close campaign in the 2008 Democratic Party presidential primaries against Hillary Clinton, he won his party's nomination.
He has captured the public imagination by celebrating almost all religious festivals in the White House.
Obama tried to quit smoking several times, sometimes using nicotine replacement therapy.
After Reverend Wright continued to make inflammatory remarks during Obama's campaign, Obama denounced him and formally quit the congregation of the Trinity United Church of Christ.