First Black Elected to Head Harvard's Law Review
February 6, 1990
The Harvard Law Review, generally considered the most prestigious in the country, elected the first black president in its 104-year history today. The job is considered the highest student position at Harvard Law School.
The new president of the Review is Barack Obama, a 28-year-old graduate of Columbia University who spent four years heading a community development program for poor blacks on Chicago's South Side before enrolling in law school. His late father, Barack Obama, was a finance minister in Kenya and his mother, Ann Dunham, is an American anthropologist now doing fieldwork in Indonesia. Mr. Obama was born in Hawaii.
On his goals in his new post, Mr. Obama said: ''I personally am interested in pushing a strong minority perspective. I'm fairly opinionated about this. But as president of the law review, I have a limited role as only first among equals.''
Mr. Obama said he planned to spend two or three years in private law practice and then return to Chicago to re-enter community work, either in politics or in local organizing.
Mr. Obama succeeds Peter Yu, a first-generation Chinese-American, as president of The Law Review.
Mr. Yu said Mr. Obama's election "was a choice on the merits, but others may read something into it."
Thursday, March 8, 2007
Barack Obama (1990): elected president of the Harvard Law Review
From the New York Times archives, in their first article about Barack Obama: