After eight years of legislative and social milestones, President Barack Obama will exit the Oval Office in January after a new president is sworn in.
But what is he planning on doing? What about First Lady Michelle Obama? And their daughters?
Politico reported earlier this year that the Obama family will stay in Washington, D.C. until their youngest daughter Sasha finishes high school. The family is reportedly planning on moving into a 9-bedroom house in D.C.’s Kalorama neighborhood in January.
His older daughter Malia graduated in June and before she begins her college education at Harvard University in 2017, she’s taking a gap year.
Obama hasn’t been specific about his post-presidential plans, but several news outlets speculate he will return to his political roots: community organizing.
“I’ll go back to doing the kinds of work that I was doing before, just trying to find ways to help people,” Obama told a group of middle schoolers last year, as reported by USA Today. “Help young people get educations, and help people get jobs, and try to bring businesses into neighborhoods that don’t have enough businesses. That’s the kind of work that I really love to do.”
Many suspect that Obama’s time will be spent working on issues that matter to him most, like gun control, criminal justice reform and immigration.
And standard presidential protocol means Obama will also get his own presidential library, which will house his presidential archives, a museum focusing on his presidency and a space for ongoing programs that will help advance The Obama Foundation’s mission. The library will be located on the South Side of Chicago, a city that plays prominently in the Obama family’s story.
The Foundation, founded “to carry on the great, unfinished project of renewal and global progress,” seeks to inspire the younger generation to become leaders in their communities and work to tackle big challenges together.
“Our history and President Obama’s legacy give us hope that even the most difficult change is possible, and the Foundation exists to carry on that great, unfinished project of renewal and global progress,” the mission statement reads.
As for Michelle, much speculation surrounds her post-White House plans as well. (The President and First Lady cannot discuss definitive career plans while still in office due to ethics rules, according to Vanity Fair.)
Many believe she will initially follow in the steps of former first ladies and publish a memoir. But after that, her plans are anyone’s guess. Popular guesses are a return to her law career or beginning work for a non-profit, which is a traditional move for presidents and first ladies.