When Barack Obama met Michelle Robinson, she was on the fast track at a prestigious Chicago law firm. As the story goes, Obama took her with him when he left to start a public life, surprising Michelle’s friends and family. But Mrs. Obama’s own entrée into not-for-profit circles and public service connected her husband to a Chicago network that has been invaluable, Time reports ahead of her convention speech.
“When you think of the number of people who got to know who Michelle was, and by extension Barack, that's a whole generation from all over Chicago,” a former co-worker says. And though Michelle Obama may have sacrificed a stable future to follow her husband into an uncertain world, her nostalgia for a close-knit family growing up is just another asset for the presidential nominee.