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South by South Lawn

Earlier this year, President Obama traveled to South by Southwest in Austin for a conversation on civic engagement and to challenge creative thinkers and entrepreneurs from across the country to help tackle our toughest challenges. On Monday, October 3, we’re celebrating that spirit of innovation with a White House event called South by South Lawn.


President Barack Obama makes remarks at the 20th Anniversary Lake Tahoe Summit at Lake Tahoe Outdoor Arena in Nevada, Aug. 31, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama makes remarks at the 20th Anniversary Lake Tahoe Summit at Lake Tahoe Outdoor Arena in Nevada, Aug. 31, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Yesterday, President Obama headed west to speak at the 20th anniversary of the Annual Lake Tahoe Summit and the Pacific Island Conference of Leaders in his home state of Hawaii.


Today, for the first time in over 50 years, a scheduled flight arrived in Cuba from the United States. The historic flight from Fort Lauderdale, Florida to Santa Clara, Cuba builds on the President's promise to reengage with Cuba -- arriving just one year after President Obama formally re-established relations between the United States and Cuba.


On October 13, 2016, President Obama will travel to Pittsburgh to host the White House Frontiers Conference, a national convening that the White House is co-hosting with the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University to explore the future of innovation here and around the world. The convening will include topics in the November issue of WIRED, which will be guest-edited by the President on the theme of “Frontiers.


This week, President Obama called on Republicans in Congress to take action and vote to fund the Administration’s response to the Zika virus. In February, the President asked Congress to fund emergency resources, including mosquito control, fast-tracking diagnostics tests and vaccines, tracking the spread of the virus, and monitoring women and babies with Zika.


Each night, the President Obama reads 10 letters sent to him by the American people. This week, he responded to one that wasn't the typical letter.

Kathleen wrote to the President through Facebook Messenger -- a newly launched way for ordinary Americans to send a note to the President. Kathleen, who will be the first in her family to get a college degree, wrote about how President Obama inspires her to make the world a better and more equal place.


Max Levchin, co-founder of PayPal, Affirm, Glow, and Slide, sent the below message to White House email lists. Didn't get the message? Sign up here for updates

In 1991, with just a few hundred dollars to our name, my family and I immigrated to the United States from the USSR, and landed in Chicago a couple of days after I turned 16 years old.


“At a time when women are increasingly the breadwinners in our households, paying them less makes it harder for families to cover the necessities like child care or health care, just to pay the bills. It makes it harder for a family to save, harder for families to retire. It means local businesses have customers with less money to spend.
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