Barack Hussein Obama II

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“I believe in evolution, scientific inquiry, and global warming; I believe in free speech, whether politically correct or politically incorrect, and I am suspicious of using government to impose anybody’s religious beliefs -including my own- on nonbelievers.”

Residence: the White House in Washington, DC (official). Chicago, Illinois (private)

Nationality: United States

Occupation: Head of State

Years Active: 2009-current (as a president)

Net Worth: US$12 Million

History/Background:

President Obama was born on August 4, 1961 at Kapi’olani Maternirty & Gynecological Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is the first President to have been born in Hawaii. His mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, was born in Wichita, Kansas, and was of mostly English ancestry. His father, Barack Obama, Sr., was a Luo from Nyang’oma Kogelo, Kenya. They divorced when Obama was young and Obama was raised by his mother until about age ten, with the help from his grandfather, who served in Patton’s army, and his grandmother, who worked at a bank. From ages six to ten, Obama attended local Indonesian-language schools: St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School for two years and Besuki Public School for one and a half years, supplemented by English-language Calvert School homeschooling by his mother.

After working completing college with the help of scholarships and student loans, President Obama moved to Chicago, where he worked with a group of churches to aid in the reconstruction of communities destroyed by the cessation of local steel plants. Obama then went on to attend law school and became a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, where he was the first African-American to become Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Law Review. Obama practiced civil rights law, representing victims of housing and employment discrimination and working on voting rights legislation. 

During his years of public service, President Obama stayed grounded on his firm belief in the ability to unite people around a politics of purpose. Early in his first term in office, Obama signed into law economic stimulus legislation in response to the Great Recession in the form of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and the Tax Relief to help cut taxes for working families, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 to expand health care for children and their parents. Other major domestic initiatives in his presidency include the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, often referred to as “Obamacare”; the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act; the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act of 2010; the Budget Control Act of 2011; and the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012. In May 2012, he became the first sitting U.S. president to publicly support same-sex marriage and in 2013 his administration filed briefs, which urged the Supreme Court to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 and California’s Proposition 8 as unconstitutional. In foreign policy, Obama ended U.S. military involvement in the Iraq War, increased troop levels in Afghanistan, signed the New START arms control treaty with Russia, ordered U.S. military involvement in Libya, and ordered the military operation that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden. As a United States Senator, he reached across the aisle to pass groundbreaking lobbying reform, lock up the world’s most dangerous weapons, and bring transparency to government by putting federal spending online.

Obama was elected the 44th President of the United States on November 4, 2008, and sworn in on January 20, 2009. He and his wife, Michelle, are the proud parents of two daughters, Malia, 14, and Sasha, 11.

Leadership Traits & Styles:

President Obama’s leadership style was not entirely known when he had just been elected during 2008. Four years later, most analysts would say his style is often collaborative – he dislikes arguments, enjoys listening to the opinions of others, and take them into consideration before making a decision. One of his leadership traits is that he is very decisive; when he makes a decision, he is very firm about it and believes it is the right one. Another of his traits is that he is thorough; he does research, talks with experts, and gets facts on issues.

President Obama possesses three kinds of leadership styles:

Transformational-charismatic

Before the election, President Barack Obama drew the attention of American’s and foreigners alike with a seemingly charismatic nature. A charismatic leader has an uncanny ability to draw others to his side and move them to accomplish a cause bigger than themselves. A charismatic approach can be transformational if it invokes a permanent change in behavior in the people who embrace the leader’s vision. During his first term, President Obama persuaded at least some to his vision by showing the potential to make a huge distinction in both domestic and foreign affairs.

Cross-Cultural-Global Leadership

The reason for America’s imagine losing its reputation under the Bush Administration was mostly due to a unilateral, ethnocentric foreign policy espoused by Bush and Cheney. While not taking America’s safety needs for granted, President Obama formulated a more cross-cultural approach to the world, thinking not only of the US’s interests but also the interests of the other nations as well. In the first six months on the job, President Obama traveled abroad more than any other president at that point of his administration and paid careful attention to cultural norms in the places where he traveled. After his first year, the President’s attempt to be more conciliatory to the Middle East, China, and Russia were welcomed by the world in that he received the Nobel Peace Prize. However, some believed the President’s policies toward the Middle East helped bring about the Arab Spring, which resulted in the downfall of at least a few pro-American regimes.

Contingency Leadership

During his first few months in office, Mr. Obama not only displayed culturally sensitive and transformational leadership, he responded to various situations using different types of leadership models. In this way he modeled what has been described as contingency leadership. When traveling abroad Obama was conciliatory, humble and apt to listening before speaking. When he faced the failing automobile industry, he did not mince words but stood tough to call for necessary changes. This was seen in how he forced GM and Chrysler to accept new MPG standards and pare down their long-time commitment to NASCAR. Under the heat of the current foreign and economic troubles, Obama worked hard to accomplish what he promised understanding that each second he waited may mean a lost home or job for another group of citizens. Whether one liked what he did or not, Obama did not shy away from the challenges that faced him when he accepted the job as president.

Achievements:

  • The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, makes it illegal for employers to pay unequal wages to men and women who perform equal work
  • The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, provided hundreds of billions of dollars into infrastructure, research and job creation
  • Saved the American auto industry and its hundreds of thousands of jobs from disappearing by preventing Chrysler and GM from going bankrupt
  • Overturned Bush Administration restrictions on federal funding for stem cell research
  • The Matthew Shepard Act, expands hate crime definitions to include gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability
  • Has created over 2 million private sector jobs in the last 14 months
  •  The Credit Card Bill of Rights, outlaws hidden fees and deceptive lending practices from credit card companies
  • The Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act, allows gay soldiers to serve openly in the United States military
  • Student loan reform, significantly expands access to affordable government loans and Pell Grants for college
  • The Affordable Care Act, will establish universal health care for the first time in the history of the United States
  • New START Treaty, will reduce by half the nuclear missile stockpiles of Russia and the United States.
  • Overturned Bush Administration “global gag rule,” allows American aid to international health organizations who provide family planning, including abortion counseling
  • The Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Act, dramatically expands federal efforts into finding a cure for paralysis, as well as increasing support for care and rehabilitation
  • Removed all combat troops from Iraq
  • Appointed Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court, the first Latina to ever serve on the bench
  • Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Act, provides health care to 11 million children who live in poverty
  • The Food Safety Modernization Act, for the first time gives the FDA a mandate to prevent, rather than simply respond to, contamination of the food supply
  • Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, overhauls the financial markets to prevent another economic crisis and establishes a new consumer protection bureau
  • Killed pirates, in particular three Somali pirates who were holding an American ship hostage in 2009
  • Killed Osama, in particular one Osama bin Laden who had taken America hostage in 2001

Awards:

  • Grammy Awards
  • 2009 Nobel Peace Prize
  • 2009-2010 NBA Rookie of the Year award
  • Cannes Lions International Advertising Awards

 Contributions:

  • Ended torture of foreign detainees
  • Health insurance reform ACA
  • Subsidized 60% of Cobra insurance
  • First time home buyer credit
  • Recovered overpayment of SSI benefits
  • Medicare fraud recovery $5 billion
  • Home foreclosure loan modification help
  • Expanded Alaska oil drilling
  • Approved the XL pipeline project partially
  • Recovery Act saved first responders jobs
  • Funding for community medical clinics
  • Credit card and bank credit card disclosures
  • Ended gay discrimination in the armed forces
  • Improved veterans medical benefits
  • Veterans employment program
  • Improved lower school grades in “Race to the Top”
  • Saved the largest banks and financial institutions
  • 18 Small Biz income tax credits
  • 2009 tax rebates for families $400-1200
  • Social Security 2% payroll tax cut
  •  Seniors $300 rebate in 2009
  • Nuclear treaty with Russia
  • Stronger military presence in the Pacific
  • Iron Dome missile defense system for Israel
  • Launching cyber attacks on Iranian nuclear facilities
  • Killed Osama bin Laden
  • Deposed the Libyan terrorist Quadaffi
  • Deportation of 400,000 illegal criminals
  • Reforming student loan cost
  • 99 Week Extension of unemployment benefits
  • Campaign against childhood obesity
  • Consumer financial protection agency
  •  Temporary work permits for undocumented youth
  • Refunds on health insurance premiums
  • Saved 1 million auto industry and related jobs
  • Extradition to U.S. of Abu Hamza and 5 others
  • Doubled Dow Jones Index to over 13,000
  • Got $20 billion from BP for oil spill
  • Sued Wells Fargo for mortgage fraud
  • Allow women in combat in military

Additional Comments:

President Obama is a good leader, a role model, and an inspiration to people from all over the world as well.

In order to be a good leader, not only must one be a good listener to address people’s difficulties, but also able to establish direction by developing a vision of the future; then he or she aligns people by communicating this vision and inspiring them to overcome hurdles. Therefore, possessing good communication skill is a very important trait. President Obama is an example of being a good communicator. He has the ability to communicate with the audience comfortably and delivers his speeches with confidence and self-belief; as the saying goes, it is important to first believe in yourself before you can convince others to believe in what you are saying. He took every question from the audience and gave each one of them a very amiable response. This makes him a good communicator because he makes the audience believe in his vision; President Obama succeeded in making his followers believe in his message of change.

President Obama was not born with a silver spoon. His parents divorced when he was young and he lived with a single mom, struggled through finances, and then lost his mother at a young age; he is the perfect role model for teens who may be going through difficult times like this, and showing them they can learn to make the most out of the situation, even when the going gets tough. Obama enthuses the minority population by ascertaining that race does not have to be an obstruction to success given the opportunities. Even though he was discriminated by a lot of people because of his skin colour, he still went for the president election. He convinced them that people should be treated all the same. He also inspires many people by the books he has written, the marvelous speeches he gives, the community service he had done, and his belief that, together, we can all make the world a better place. Also, he shows as a great example to his people by being wise to resolve problems with other countries through negotiation instead of war.

All in all, I feel that President Obama has a very warm heart and also a very inspirational and charismatic leader who inspires the world and attracts his followers to his vision and dreams through his actions.

Credits:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/president-obama/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barack_Obama
http://ecoggins.hubpages.com/hub/Barack-Obamas-Leadership-Styles
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20130203085422AA0ur1f