Michelle Obama’s Birthday – January 17, 2020

Fri Jan 17

What is Michelle Obama’s Birthday?

On January 17, we celebrate Michelle Obama’s Birthday! As first lady, Michelle Obama won our hearts with inspiring speeches and acts of kindness. She encouraged young women to believe in their futures — promising that hard work can lead to endless possibilities. “When they go low, we go high.” 

History of Michelle Obama’s Birthday

Michelle LaVaughn Robinson was born on January 17, 1964 in Chicago, Illinois to Fraser Robinson III and Marian Shields Robinson. Despite her high school adviser telling her not to set her sights too high in terms of applying to colleges, she and her older brother, Craig, both went to Princeton University, where Michelle majored in sociology and minored in African American studies, graduating cum laude with a BA in 1985. Michelle mentions that being at Princeton was the first time she was aware of her race and economic class, and despite the willingness of her classmates and teachers to reach out to her, she merely felt like a visitor on campus.
She then went on to receive her JD (Juris Doctor) degree from Harvard Law School in 1988. Her faculty mentor at Harvard Law was Charles Ogletree, who said that she had answered the questions plaguing her throughout Princeton by the time she arrived at Harvard: whether she would remain the product of her parents or keep the identity she had acquired at Princeton. She had come to the conclusion that she could be both brilliant and black. She is the third First Lady with a postgraduate degree, after her two immediate predecessors Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush. 
Michelle met Barack Obama when they were among the few African Americans at their law firm: Sidley Austin LLP. She was assigned to mentor him while he was a summer associate, and though she didn’t immediately take romantic interest in him, he continued to impress and woo her throughout the short time they spent with each other. 

Michelle Obama’s Birthday timeline

2009
Historic moment

Obama became the first African-American first lady — and only the third with a postgraduate degree.

2011
Helping veterans

Obama co-founded the Joining Forces program to expand educational and employment options for veterans.

2016
Vogue cover

She appeared on the cover of Vogue for the third time and once again won praise for her timeless sense of style.

2017
White House exit speech

A quote: "Being your first lady has been the greatest honor of my life and I hope I've made you proud."

2018
Memoir published

Obama's book "Becoming" told the story of her Chicago roots as well as her time in the White House. The memoir sold over 1.4 million copies in its first week.

Michelle Obama Statistics

10 million sold copies
“Becoming”, Michelle Obama’s memoire, was published November 12, 2018. On just its first day, the book sold around 725,000 copies in the United States and Canada. Barnes and Noble reported the book had more first week sales of any adult books since “Go Set a Watchman” in 2015 and sold 1.4 million copies in its first week. After 15 days, it became the best selling book in the US for the year 2018. By March 26, 2019, “Becoming” had sold 10 million copies. 
Over 21 million low-income children fed
In 2010 Michelle Obama helped pass The School Lunch program with bipartisan support. The program provides free and reduced-priced meals to more than 21 million low-income children and requires districts to serve more fruit, vegetable, whole grain, and lean protein food options. 
20% less sodium and calories
Through her healthy food initiative, Michelle Obama was able to reach Darden, the world’s largest full service restaurant company, which owns Olive Garden, Red Lobster, and other chains. Darden made a commitment to improve kids’ menus by offering a fruit or vegetable and low-fat milk with every meal. They also vowed to reduce total calories and sodium by 20% across their menus over the next 10 years. 

Michelle Obama’s Birthday FAQs

How many copies of "Becoming" sold?

Within its first week, “Becoming” sold 1.4 million copies. After 15 days, it became the best-selling book in the US for the year of 2018. By March 26, 2019, “Becoming” had sold 10 million copies.
 

What is Michelle Obama's zodiac sign?

Michelle Obama was born January 17, making her a Capricorn, one of the three signs associated with the element Earth. 
 

What did Michelle Obama do for our country?

Michelle Obama didn’t want to be solely known as “the wife of the president,” but wanted to make sure she used this rare and short moment of being in the public eye to make a real difference in America. She tuned the South Lawn of the White House into a vegetable garden, which led to her creating the Let’s Move! initiative to make a healthier America and combat childhood obesity. 
 

How to Celebrate Michelle Obama’s Birthday

  1. Watch her stunning speech

    Obama electrified the crowd at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. This one deserves a second look.

  2. Follow her

    We don't just mean following her on Twitter and other social media. Hear what she has to say and be a force for social change!

  3. Throw a dance party

    This is the perfect way to celebrate her birthday because Obama loves to dance. So throw on some Beyoncé like the First Lady would and dance like no one's watching! 

5 Inspiring Michelle Obama Facts

  1. Presidential adviser

    President Obama called her "my rock" and regularly asked for advice on important matters.

  2. Meet the female gladiator

    Obama loves to work out so much that she earned the nickname "female gladiator" among her friends.

  3. She likes to work for the people

    She gave up a high-profile career in corporate law to work in public service because she wanted to change lives.

  4. Barack had to play basketball to date her

    As a test she asked Barack Obama to play basketball with her brother before deciding to date him. That's because her father used to say that you can tell a lot about a person by observing them on the court!

  5. She loves french fries

    She loves healthy food, but occasionally indulges in not-so-healthy food!

Why We Love Michelle Obama’s Birthday

  1. She's inspiring

    It's impossible to read Michelle Obama's memoir and not come away ready to make a difference, whether in your own life or somebody else's. She shows us nothing is impossible, even when every odd is stacked against you. 

  2. She's more than just "Mrs. Obama"

    Michelle never wanted to be solely known as the President's wife, but as someone who made the most of her time in the position she was in, and helped as many people as she could. In that way, she was more than just the first lady, but an icon of her own.

  3. She's not afraid to have fun

    From her appearances on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to the time she told James Corden during Carpool Karaoke "This is the Oval Office, my husband is in there somewhere...well he'd better be, that's where he said he was," Michelle Obama knows how to have a good time, not take herself too seriously, all while still conveying a charitable message of great importance. She's basically, what you'd call, amazing. 

Michelle Obama’s Birthday dates

YearDateDay
2020January 17Friday
2021January 17Sunday
2022January 17Monday
2023January 17Tuesday
2024January 17Wednesday

Let’s get social

Here are some special hashtags for the day.

#HappyBirthdayMichelleObama #MichelleObama #MichelleObamasBirthday