Obama's sister addresses nation

Rachel Briggs
Rachel Briggs
Chelsea Hieda
Chelsea Hieda
Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng
Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

DENVER (KHNL) -- While many voters around the country watched the Democratic National Convention with interest, for a number of young students in Hawaii, this election has turned into a personal one.

Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng teaches history. But Monday she is made a little history of her own as she addressed the Democratic National Convention. Its unusual for the sibling of a candidate to speak.

But on that day, she gave the audience, including her students a real life lesson in politics.

Even on this tranquil and scenic school setting at La Pietra, there is excitement from the Democratic National Convention.

"This is very exciting, this is the first time I've been involved in a political campaign," said La Pietra senior, Rachel Briggs.

Rachel isn't even old enough to vote but that hasn't stopped her from getting involved in this year's campaigns.

"I work at events, I worked at state convention, I even started a student group on our school," said Briggs.

A connection with Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng has also made this election a more personal one.

And she's not alone.

"It really involves us in the political process, maybe some of us wouldn't be as interested in candidates across the country but having the sister of the possible president really brings it to a personal level," added Brigss.

"Its honorable to know her, not just because she's the sister of Barack. But because she's a role model of supporters," said La Pietra senior, Chelsea Hieda.

Dr. Soetoro-Ng addressed the nation, and the delegates with her stories of history and hope.

"When we were young, our family didn't have much in the way of wealth but what we did have was something more important. We had people who made us believe with a little imagination we could dream the improbable and thru hard work we could accomplish the extraordinary," said Soetoro-Ng.

Her words also reached these young women who have shared their own hopes and dreams with this keynote speaker.

"She's very easy to talk to, she's a passionate person, she really understands your passions," said Hieda.

Dr. Soetoro-Ng was not the only relative to speak, Barack's brother in law and of course his wife also addressed the convention.