WASHINGTON - A year ago Wednesday, Barack Obama embarked on his historic presidency, facing immense challenges but riding a tide of hope for success. Here's a look at what he has accomplished so far, and what he has left to do:
Children's health care: In February, Obama signed legislation to expand publicly funded insurance for children. The bill aimed to provide government-subsidized insurance to 4 million mostly low-income children, reducing the number of uninsured youth by half.
Afghanistan plan: Obama this winter ordered 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan, with the goal of reversing the Taliban's momentum, stabilizing the government and, ultimately, eradicating al-Qaida havens along the Afghan border with Pakistan.
Economic stimulus: Obama signed a $787-billion stimulus bill just weeks after taking office, aiming to ease the recession. The White House says the initiative has saved jobs and staved off an even deeper recession.
Supreme Court: Obama chose Sonia Sotomayor to be the first Latina justice on the high court. Confirmed last year by a 68-31 vote, the Yale Law School graduate became the third woman to serve as a U.S. Supreme Court justice.
High on to-do list
Health care overhaul: Obama helped guide a major overhaul of the nation's health care system through the House and Senate. He is trying to negotiate a final version with congressional leaders.
Improving the intelligence system: The alleged al-Qaida attempt to down a Northwest Airlines plane on Christmas Day revealed gaps in the system for detecting and preventing terrorist plots. A review showed the need for numerous improvements.
International engagement: Many analysts credit Obama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize last year, with changing America's image abroad by emphasizing multilateralism and collaboration. But he still has to translate goodwill into achievement on a range of complex subjects, including stopping the nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea and diminishing conflict in the Middle East.
Guantánamo closure:Ordering a shutdown of the military prison in Cuba was one of the first things Obama did last January, but emptying the facility has proved harder than expected.
Immigration: As a candidate, Obama supported creating a path to citizenship for many of the nation's illegal immigrants. But he has yet to push for legislation to overhaul immigration laws.
Gays in the military: Obama's promise to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" policy governing gays and lesbians in the armed forces is on hold while the White House and lawmakers work to build support for its repeal.