Col. Patrick McKenzie, the 51st Fighter Wing commander, shakes hands with President Barack Obama at Osan Air Base, South Korea, March 25, 2012, during introductions by Gen. James Thurman, the U.S. Forces Korea commander. The president transited the base on his way to the 2012 Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South Korea. Barack Hussein Obama II (August 4, 1961) is the 44th President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Born in Hawaii, Obama is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School. He was a community organizer, civil rights attorney and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004. He served three terms in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004, running unsuccessfully for the United States House of Representatives in 2000. In the 2008 presidential election, he defeated Republican nominee John McCain, and was inaugurated as president. He was named the Nobel Peace Prize laureate in 2009. He was re-elected president in November 2012, defeating Republican nominee Mitt Romney, and was sworn in for a second term on January 20, 2013.