Former President Barack Obama is reconnecting with an old friend. On Friday, the 60-year-old politician shared a video on his Instagram page of him meeting recent high school graduate Jacob Philadelphia.
The two first met in 2009, when Jacob was visiting the Oval Office with his father, former National Security Council staffer Carlton Philadelphia. The then 5-year-old boy and his older brother spoke with the then president, and Jacob asked him a single question: "Is your hair like mine?"
Obama responded by leaning in so Jacob could reach out his hand and feel his hair for himself. "Go ahead and play it," Obama said at the time.
Former White House photographer Pete Souza used his impeccable timing to capture the moment with a photo, later named Hair like mine. The image quickly became a lasting image of Obama's historic presidency and, as Obama said on his Instagram Stories when he shared the video, "a reminder of the power of seeing yourself in your leaders."
In the shared video, Obama and Jacob reconnected ahead of the latter's high school graduation from the Uganda International School and reflected on the viral moment.
"I think this image embodied one of the hopes I had when I started running for office," Obama said. "I remember saying to Michelle and some of my staff, 'I think if I won, the day I took office, young people, particularly African-Americans, people of color, outsiders, people who maybe always won ' They don't feel like they belong, they would look at themselves differently if they saw a person who looked like them in the Oval Office... now they could see the world opening up for them."
The sentiment was echoed by Jacob, who noted that the photo was a "pretty big highlight of my life."
“It is very wonderful to see representation in government because if I can see another black man at the top, at that pinnacle, then I want to follow that example,” he added.
Jacob, who has traveled the world as the son of a State Department employee, told the former president that he plans to attend the University of Memphis and study political science after high school.
"I think the visit to the White House clearly inspired them, I hope," Obama said.
"Yes, he really has," answered Jacob.
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