BEIJING: US President Barack Obama begins his first state visit to China on Sunday at the invitation of Chinese President Hu Jintao. The following is a brief profile of the US president:
Born in 1961 in Honolulu, Hawaii, Obama spent part of his childhood in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta.
After graduation from high school, he attended Occidental College in California. Two years later, he transferred to Columbia University in New York, where he majored in political science with a specialization in international relations and received his bachelor's degree in 1983.
He entered Harvard Law School in 1988 and obtained his doctor's degree in 1991. After graduation, he worked in a law firm in Chicago where he practiced civil rights law and taught the Constitution at the University of Chicago.
As a Democrat, Obama served three terms in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004. He was elected in the congressional elections in 2004 as a US senator. He won the presidential election in 2008 and was inaugurated on January 20, 2009.
Obama married Michelle Robinson in 1992. They have two daughters.