Who IS Jill Biden, Anyway?

Now that Barack Obama has chosen Joe Biden as his running mate — and he’s due to speak tonight at the DNC — we decided to indulge our curiosity about his wife Jill. Is she as awesome as Michelle? Does she have a steely stare like Cindy McCain? Does she appreciate a pantsuit? Here’s the scoop on the potential Mrs. Vice-President.

FAMILY: Born Jill Jacobs in 1951, Jill is actually Joe Biden’s second wife. His first wife, Neilia died in a car accident, along with their baby daughter Naomi, in 1972, shortly after he was elected to the Senate. Joe Biden was actually sworn into office at the bedside of his young son Beau, who was also injured in the crash. Five years later, Jill and Joe were married in the Roman Catholic Church. The two met after he saw her picture in a local paper, and by coincidence his brother set him up with her. Jill raised his boy Beau and Robert as if they were her own — the two even included the boys in the wedding ceremony and took them on the honey moon — and also welcomed daughter Ashley. They now also are grandparents to five and live in Biden’s state of Delaware. Joe Biden is known for making the long commute from D.C. to Delaware every night to be with his family.
FRIENDS: It’s not clear who Jill Biden’s close friends are, probably because she’s not interested in hobnobbing with Washington’s elite. Like her husband, she considers herself a woman of working class roots and most of her friends are not in the public eye. However, with Biden now compaigning with Senator Obama, Jill and Obama’s wife Michelle are sure to become fast friends.

CAREER: Before she met and married Joe Biden, Jill was an English teacher, a career she still prioritizes — she’s currently an English professor at the Delaware Technical Community College, and has also worked with troubled teens for the last 20 years. As if there’s any question, the woman is a total smarty-pants, holding a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Delaware, two Master’s Degrees from West Chester University and Villanova University, as well as a Doctorate from the University of Delaware. In her spare time she is extremely committed to the breast cancer charity she started, Biden Breast Health Initiative, a program aimed at early detection of breast cancer. She was inspired to start the charity after three of her friends were diagnosed with the disease in the same year.

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