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Ben Carson
Ben Carson official portrait.jpg
17th United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
In office
March 2, 2017 – January 20, 2021
President Donald Trump
Preceded by Julian Castro
Succeeded by Marcia Fudge (nominee)
Personal details
Benjamin Solomon Carson

September 18, 1951 (1951-09-18) (age 69)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Political party Republican (1981–1999;
Other political
Democratic (before 1981)
Independent (1999–2016)
Spouse(s) Candy Rustin (m. 1975)
Children 3
Education Yale University (BA)
University of Michigan, Ann
Net worth $6–20 million (2015)
Awards Presidential Medal of Freedom

Benjamin S. "Ben" Carson, Sr (born September 18, 1951) is an American neurosurgeon and politician. He was the 17th United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development from 2017 to 2021. After graduating from Yale University, Carson went to University of Michigan Medical School, and was later accepted to Johns Hopkins University.

In 2008, Carson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom from George W. Bush. He was the Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital. He is known for, among other accomplishments, being the first doctor to separate twins that were joined together at the head.

Early life

Carson was born in Detroit, Michigan to Sonya Copeland and to Robert Carson. He studied at Yale University and at the University of Michigan.


Carson was a professor of neurosurgery, oncology, plastic surgery, and pediatrics, and he was the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital. At 33, he became the youngest major division director in the hospital's history as director of pediatric neurosurgery. He was also a co-director of the Johns Hopkins Craniofacial Center.

He was the first surgeon to successfully separate conjoined twins joined at the head. In 2008 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush. After delivering a widely publicized speech at the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast, he became a popular conservative figure in political media for his views on social and political issues.

In March 2013, Carson announced he would retire as a surgeon, stating "I'd much rather quit when I'm at the top of my game". His retirement became official on July 1, 2013.

2016 presidential campaign

Carson ran for the Republican nomination for President of the United States in the 2016 election.

On March 2 following the 2016 Super Tuesday primaries, Carson announced that while he was not suspending his campaign he "did not see a 'path forward'" and would not attend the next Republican debate in Detroit. On March 4, 2016, Carson suspended his presidential campaign. He later endorsed Donald Trump.

United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (2017–2021)

On December 5, 2016, Donald Trump nominated Carson for the job of United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

On March 2, 2017, Carson was confirmed by the United States Senate in a 58–41 vote.

Personal life

Carson married Candy Carson in 1975. They have three children. He is a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

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