All Articles Tagged "michelle obama"
Since her start with Destiny’s Child, Beyonce has amassed a legion of fans who cheer her on at every move. She’s also inspired a lot of people to channel their inner Sasha Fierce and impersonate the “Bootylicious” singer. Here are some of the best and funniest Beyonce impersonations.
Maya Rudolph Talks About Elevator Beat Down
When the public got its hands on the now infamous video of Solange physically attacking Jay Z in an elevator while her big sister Beyonce silently watched, we all knew an “SNL” parody was right around the corner. Show regulars Sasheer Zemanta and Jay Pharoahe played the younger sister and the Brooklyn rapper respectively but when Maya Rudolph walked on as the R&B diva, she stole the show.
Our First Lady is looking absolutely gorgeous on the cover of ESSENCE. Inside of the magazine’s August 2014 issue, Lady O dishes on the importance of education and how she’s preparing her daughters, Sasha and Malia, to be successful out in the real world. Check out some highlights from her interview below.
On teaching her daughters about hard work and perseverance:
“I know I tell my kids all the time that they shouldn’t shy away from difficult things, because that is the point at which you are really growing. It’s not just about grades or test scores. Today our kids may shy away from applying to college if they think they don’t have the right grade or test score. But the truth is that the kids who succeed and go on to be successful professionals are the ones who know how to work hard.”
On African-Americans owing it to their ancestors to get educated:
“We cannot waste the opportunity that we have here in America, especially as African-Americans. Our ancestors fought and bled and died so that we could go to school. And I still think about that.”
On teaching her daughters to be accountable:
“We talk about responsibility and accountability, about making sure that they’re not wasting the opportunities they’re given. We make sure they know how lucky they are and that, because of that, they have an obligation to have their acts together and to take their education very seriously.”
Catch her full interview in the August 2014 issue of ESSENCE, which hits stands July 4.
Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise
It’s the most important date in a person’s life. But for celebrities, their wedding day is more than just making a commitment to someone they are — or think — they’re in love with. It’s a chance to break out the finest in bridal fashion and strut their stuff. So as your Facebook becomes cluttered with summer wedding photos and engagement announcements, we decided to add to the pile with our favorite celebrity wedding looks.
As we reported earlier, Dr. Maya Angelou’s memorial service was held this past Saturday at the Wait Chapel on the campus of Wake Forest University in North Carolina, where Dr. Angelou taught for more than 33 years and served as Reynolds Professor of American Studies from 1982 until her death.
First Lady Michelle Obama, Oprah, Cicely Tyson, Andrew Young, President Bill Clinton and many others attended the ceremony, which was private but live streamed for the public, to pay their respects to the poet, teacher, author, dancer and all around phenomenal woman. Bebe Winans also sang during the service.
The highlight of the day, for many, came when Mrs. Obama delivered a very moving and inspiring speech that spoke frankly and eloquently about Maya Angelou’s words helping to carry her from a little black girl in Chicago to the White House. And she credited Dr. Angelou for being one of the forces that encouraged her during the campaign trail when her own black womanhood was examined and dissected. She spoke about how Dr. Angelou’s achievement was not just her’s alone but one in which all black women can share.
If you don’t have time to watch the whole ceremony, which you can do in the video below but if you want to read Mrs. Obama’s speech, you can read the entire transcript on the next page.
First Lady Michelle Obama will be among several speakers scheduled to deliver remarks at Dr. Maya Angelou’s private memorial service this weekend, The Washington Post reports.
The service is set to take place Saturday at Wake Forest University’s Wait Chapel in Winston Salem, North Carolina. Although the service will be closed to the public, Wake Forest has plans to stream it online. Her relationship with the Obamas dates back to 2008 during the POTUS’ first presidential campaign. Dr. Angelou, who was initially a supporter of Hillary Clinton, endorsed President Obama once Hillary dropped out of the race.
“When her friend Nelson Mandela passed away last year, Maya Angelou wrote that ‘No sun outlasts its sunset, but will rise again, and bring the dawn,” President Obama said in a statement regarding Dr. Angelou’s passing.
Today, Michelle and I join millions around the world in remembering one of the brightest lights of our time – a brilliant writer, a fierce friend, and a truly phenomenal woman. Over the course of her remarkable life, Maya was many things – an author, poet, civil rights activist, playwright, actress, director, composer, singer and dancer. But above all, she was a storyteller – and her greatest stories were true. A childhood of suffering and abuse actually drove her to stop speaking – but the voice she found helped generations of Americans find their rainbow amidst the clouds, and inspired the rest of us to be our best selves. In fact, she inspired my own mother to name my sister Maya.
Like so many others, Michelle and I will always cherish the time we were privileged to spend with Maya. With a kind word and a strong embrace, she had the ability to remind us that we are all God’s children; that we all have something to offer. And while Maya’s day may be done, we take comfort in knowing that her song will continue, “flung up to heaven” – and we celebrate the dawn that Maya Angelou helped bring.”
As previously reported, the esteemed writer and poet passed away last week in her Winston Salem home.
Michelle Obama’s style has fascinated us since she stepped into the political limelight. Not only do her outfits become fodder for the fashion pages, but she has influenced the fashion industry and made a financial impact on the sector. Items she wears quickly become hot sellers. Her mix of off-the-rack pieces with designer items has changed the way we look at fashion.
But who pays for those fashionable outfits?
No, it’s not the taxpayers. And no, she doesn’t borrow gowns from designers. Sometimes Mrs. Obama pays for them herself but she probably isn’t paying full price.
She can certainly afford the designer numbers. The Obamas reported adjusted income of $481,000 for 2013, and assets worth between $1.8 million and $7 million.
“Mrs. Obama pays for her clothing. For official events of public or historic significance, such as a state visit, the First Lady’s clothes may be given as a gift by a designer and accepted on behalf of the U.S. government. They are then stored by the National Archives,” says Joanna Rosholm, press secretary to the First Lady.
Being First Lady, Michelle Obama is expected to dress well, but she doesn’t get a clothing allowance or even a salary.
“Mary Todd Lincoln racked up tens of thousands of dollars in clothing bills and considered selling manure from the White House grounds to pay them off, according to the National First Ladies’ Library. Jacqueline Kennedy’s father-in-law stepped in to finance her Oleg Cassini wardrobe to keep clothes from becoming a political liability for President John Kennedy. Nancy Reagan got grief for borrowing designer gowns and not always returning them or reporting them as gifts,” reports My Plainview.
But Mrs. Obama, like most of us, searches for deals and discounts. And Mrs. Obama can get a significant amount off.
Mrs. Obama also keeps costs down by rotating outfits. She “wore the same dress to this year’s Mother’s Day tea that she’d worn to lunch with Katy Perry in October 2012. She often switches around separates, belts and other accessories to give clothes in her wardrobe a fresh look,” says My Plainview.
Other times she gets the clothes for free. Among the clothing donated by designers are Mrs. Obama’s two inaugural gowns made by Jason Wu, who became a fashion star after she wore them. The blue Carolina Herrera gown that Mrs. Obama wore to February ‘s state dinner for French President Francois Hollande and the gold beaded Naeem Khan gown that she donned to the 2012 Governors Ball now on display at the American Museum of Natural History, were also donated.
Custom gowns can get pricey. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 1993 inaugural gown by Sarah Phillips was in the range of $50,000.
Obviously Michelle Obama is one savvy shopper.
Forbes has released its annual list of most powerful women and First Lady Michelle Obama comes in at number eight, four spots lower than last year. Oprah Winfrey comes in at number 14 (one slot lower than last year); Beyonce hangs on to number 17; Ursula Burns is in at number 22 (falling from 14); and Eartharin Cousin, the executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme, is at number 45. According to Forbes, Cousin has fed 177 million people since she assumed her leadership position two years ago.
Further down at number 64 is Rosalind Brewer, the president of Sam’s Club, which had revenues of $53 billion during fiscal year 2013.
As evidenced by the paragraph above, the list is very much the same as last year. Jezebel notes that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is number one, a position she’s held 10 of the last 11 years. Lady Gaga is the youngest at 28 years old (#67); Queen Elizabeth is the oldest at 88, ranked number 35.
“The résumés and accomplishments of the women on the Forbes list are all impressive (13 billionaires, 9 heads of state, 28 corporate CEOs), but nearly half the list are “female firsts”—the first female Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, GM’s first female CEO Mary Barra, the first female self-made African billionaire Folorunsho Alakija,” Jezebel continues.
Other women from abroad who made the list include Joyce Banda (#40), the first female president of Malawi; Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (#44), the finance minister from Nigeria; and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (#70), the president of Liberia.
According to USA Today, the Obamas have their listed assets valued at about $2 million to $7 million. Although for the average citizen, this information would be private, White House spokesperson Jay Carney reminds us that the opposite goes for the First Family.
“The Ethics in Government Act of 1978 requires high-level federal officials to publicly disclose their personal financial interests. The public filing system serves to prevent financial conflicts of interest by providing for a systematic review of the finances of government officials,” said Carney.
We see the President and First Lady so often, we think of them as celebrities. And many celebrities make many millions. So to see that the Obamas — he’s the leader of the free world and she’s the bomb — don’t have more in the bank might be a little jarring. (Mitt Romney, for instance, is said to be worth hundreds of millions.) But keep in mind, the President’s salary is $450,000, a figure that hasn’t gone up in the past fiscal year.
CNN Money tells us the Obamas have invested between $1 million to $5 million assets into U.S. Treasury securities. Their daughters, Malia and Sasha, will not have to take loans to fund their college educations; their parents allocated between $200,000 and $400,000 in 529 college savings plans for them.
However, some time has passed since President Obama’s bestselling books were smash hits. In comparison to their 2010 stats, the President’s memoir sales this year earned him about $165,000, a big drop from their $1.1 million sales. President Obama’s personal assets are reportedly worth between $1.95 and $7.15 million.
Their mortgage was the only liability listed by the Obamas in their financial disclosure.
#BringBackOurGirls: Michelle Obama And Hillary Clinton Show Support In Search For Abducted Girls In Nigeria
It’s been very nice to see so many people get involved and use their voices to get the word out about the more than 200 girls who were kidnapped by Boko Haram terrorists in Northern Nigeria weeks ago, as well as the eight girls kidnapped earlier this week. We told you that Secretary of State, John Kerry, said that the U.S. is planning to aid Nigerian government and military in quelling the influence of the Boko Haram. According to a CBS affiliate in Washington D.C. via the Pentagon, that help will come in the form of less than 10 troops who will help with “communications, logistics and intelligence planning.” There is no plan for a launch of military or any type of physical attack on the militants by the U.S. troops for now.
But another voice coming out of the White House that people seemed very excited to hear (or see actually) was that of Michelle Obama. She posted a picture of herself with a sign that said #BringBackOurGirls inside the White House on Instagram, showing her support.
Our prayers are with the missing Nigerian girls and their families. It’s time to #BringBackOurGirls. -mo
Another influential voice was that of probable 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. At a philanthropy conference in New York this week, she spoke to Robin Roberts about the actions of the Boko Haram and the inaction of the Nigerian government:
“The seizure of these young women by this radical extremist group, Boko Haram, is abominable, it’s criminal, it’s an act of terrorism and it really merits the fullest response possible, first and foremost by the government of Nigeria.”
Republicans say that Clinton could have helped long ago to prevent this whole situation from happening. According to the CBS affiliate, they sat when she was head of the State Department, had she actually labeled the Boko Haram as a terrorist group, much more could have been done long ago to stop them. Despite that criticism, she still took to Twitter to spread the word and show support for the kidnapped girls.
“Access to education is a basic right & an unconscionable reason to target innocent girls. We must stand up to terrorism. #BringBackOurGirls”
According to the BBC, there is an online social media march taking place today, where people are being encouraged to spend 200 minutes on social media sites getting the word out about the missing girls. Get involved in any way you can.
“Reject The Slander That Says A Black Child With A Book Is Trying To Act White” The Best Celebrity Commencement Speakers
It’s a wonderful time of the year for college students around the nation. With young adults bidding farewell to frat parties, all-nighters and general recklessness, students are gearing up for one final hurrah: Graduation. So now seems as good a time as ever to take a look back at our favorite celebrity commencement speakers whose words we have no doubt will stick with these grads throughout the years.