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Promoting Service

Hordes of cheering children, parents, teachers and volunteers welcomed first lady Michelle Obama to a playground-in-progress in San Francisco's Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood Monday, where the president's wife joined California first lady Maria Shriver in building a play structure and saluting community volunteers.

Obama cited the playground at Bret Harte Elementary School as an example of the kind of public service all Americans should embrace, a call she reiterated Monday evening at the National Conference on Volunteering and Service at Moscone Center.

"This new Obama administration doesn't view service as something separate from our national priorities. ... We have an administration that understands that service is the key to achieving our national priorities," she said. "For far too long, we've viewed service in our communities as largely separate from our policies in government."

Obama was the keynote speaker at the conference of more than 4,000 volunteer and service leaders from across the nation and around the world. The star-studded event featured speakers including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, musician Jon Bon Jovi and actor Matthew McConaughey. But the first lady was clearly the star. … Back to Article

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