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Former President Barack Obama, Michelle in Chicago on Thursday, Friday

The former first couple were last together in the city in September, for the ceremonial groundbreaking for their Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park.

Former President Barack Obama, left, and former first lady Michelle Obama toss shovels of dirt during a groundbreaking ceremony for the Obama Presidential Center, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021.
Former President Barack Obama, left, and former first lady Michelle Obama toss shovels of dirt during a groundbreaking ceremony for the Obama Presidential Center, Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021.
Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times file photo

WASHINGTON — The Obama Presidential Foundation late Wednesday night announced former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle will return to Chicago on Thursday and Friday for a series of foundation events.

The former first couple, rarely in Chicago, were last together in the city in September, for the ceremonial groundbreaking for their Obama Presidential Center in Jackson Park.

The foundation released few details on the visit, saying in a release that there will be meetings with “groups of community leaders” — none named — “whose work embodies the Obama Foundation’s approach to civic leadership and who are working in their communities to build effective solutions to a range of challenges ranging from mental health, LGBTQ advocacy, violence, food insecurity, economic opportunities and more.”

The former president “will also share the ways the Obama Foundation is using its community engagement resources and evidence-based strategies to support anti-violence leaders in Chicago,” foundation officials said.

Mrs. Obama, a product of the Chicago Public Schools, will be meeting with CPS high school students “regarding life after high school and the various career paths available to them,” a continuation in the post-presidency of one of her signature first lady programs.

When in the White House, Mrs. Obama launched her Reach Higher initiative to help high school students learn about options once they graduate, whether it’s college or other career training, and then help them get the financial support they need for their education.

A major domestic foundation program is the Girls Opportunity Alliance, and in Chicago this week, “adolescent girls from across the city will meet with Mrs. Obama to share their perspectives on the unique challenges girls face in today’s society and ways the Foundation’s Girls Opportunity Alliance can support the needs of girls in Chicago.”