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Former First Lady Michelle Obama serves as a shining example of service and activism for her fellow Americans. By the time she reached the White House, she already had accomplished a lot; before becoming the first African American First Lady of the United States, she was an Ivy League graduate, attorney, Associate Dean of Student Services at the University of Chicago. She later added New York Times bestselling author to her impressive resume. 

But, for this devoted mother of two daughters, these are just small stepping stones to her true passions— the health of American children and solving challenges faced by girls worldwide.

In 2010 she spearheaded Let’s Move, a movement based around children’s health. Exercise was a critical part of the effort; however, another priority for Let’s Move was access to healthy foods for children in urban communities who may not have fresh fruits and vegetables in their diets. The First Lady worked with celebrity chef Rachael Ray to come up with healthy, simple recipes containing five ingredients or less. She also took the crusade to schools encouraging healthier food options in cafeterias around the country. Her energetic and charismatic personality made Let’s Move relatable to parents and kids alike.

Following her tenure in The White House, she launched the Global Girl Alliance in 2018. The goal of the alliance is to empower girls worldwide through education, and it does so by supporting 1,500 grassroots organizations in local communities. Motivated by the fact that 98 million adolescent girls around the world do not attend school, the Global Girl Alliance emphasizes that education reduces poverty, creates stronger families, and makes the world a better place.

Not only is Michelle Obama an activist for causes important to her, but she also travels the country and encourages Americans to be activists for what motivates them. She firmly believes activism is personal, and encourages people not to give up in their pursuits to make the world a better place. Michelle Obama understands that activism, especially when it involves huge global issues, can be difficult to find success with. Michelle encourages people to break efforts down into smaller pieces as she does with Global Girl Alliance. In her words, focus on “one school, one village, one girl at a time. That’s how you make a change in this world.”