Michelle Obama: FLOTUS' Lasting Legacy

With President Obama leaving the office comes the first lady leaving the White House. With an incredible 72% in favorability ratings, many will not only miss the president, but also Michelle Obama, who has made a significant imprint on the United States in her 8 years as the first lady. Although not technically a political figure, Michelle Obama has created a wave of movements that have jumpstarted lifestyle changes and inspired many.

Her first initiative involved the planting of a new garden on the South Lawn of the White House in 2009. This garden jumpstarted her Let's Move! initiative to tackle childhood obesity and improve access to healthy food. This movement resulted in the “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act” to be passed which resulted in schools improving their nutritional standards for meals and upping the amount of kids who had access to school lunch at minimal or no cost. In her attempt to improve health standards, she also collaborated with multiple celebrities and athletes in advertisements and videos to encourage young people to stay active and eat right.

In 2011, along with Dr. Jill Biden, she launched a military initiative that aimed to “bridge the civilian-military divide, using media campaigns and corporate connections to tackle issues like veterans’ unemployment, military spouse credentialing, and veterans’ homelessness.”

In 2014, Michelle Obama shifted her focus to accessible education for girls all around the world and launched her “Reach Higher” initiative. These efforts included making “America have the world’s highest proportion of college graduates by 2020.” In addition, she pushed for more school counselors, education for African-Americans, arts education, and fashion education.

In addition to her legislative impact, Michelle Obama shook the traditional image of the first lady with her contemporary style. Straying away from the typical conservative style, she made headlines with her bold outfits. By doing so, she reframed the typical image of the first lady and inspired many with her new style.

To the lady who has coined the phrase “when they go low, we go high,” we thank you for your inspiring efforts and timeless poise and class.



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