Facts about Ben Carson
Ben Carson Biography
Dr. Ben Carson was a pediatric neurosurgeon who became famous as an outspoken political figure and Republican presidential candidate in 2016.
Carson became head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under President Donald Trump in 2017 and served in that post until Trump lost re-election in 2020.
Ben Carson overcame tough childhood circumstances and graduated from Yale University in (1973), then from the medical school at the University of Michigan (1977).
He studied neurosurgery and at the young age of 33 became the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins.
He was perhaps best known for his pioneering work in radical hemispherectomies — the removal of half the brain to help seizure patients — and as a specialist in the separation of conjoined (Siamese) twins.
Carson also became a popular speaker who told his own story to encourage young people to make the most of their abilities. He wrote the memoir Gifted Hands (1990) and the inspirational books Think Big (1992) and The Big Picture (1999).
With his wife he founded the Carson Scholars Fund and was named to the President’s Council on Bioethics in 2004 by George W. Bush; Bush awarded Carson the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2008.
Dr. Carson grabbed the spotlight in 2013 at the National Prayer Breakfast and spoke against federal involvement in health care (that is, Obamacare), with President Barack Obama in the audience.
Carson has also spoken out against gay marriage and once said that white liberals “are the most racist people there are.” His comments raised his profile and he became a prominent TV political commentator.
On May 4, 2015, Carson announced that he would run for the GOP nomination in the 2016 election. He ended his campaign in March of 2016.
After Donald Trump won the presidency in November of 2016, he named Carson to head up HUD, saying “Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities.”
Carson’s time at HUD was largely unremarkable and he did little to slow a growing crisis in affordable housing.
Carson’s most newsworthy event as a cabinet member was when he planned to spend $31,000 on office furniture (but didn’t, in the end). After leaving office Carson and his wife started a “think tank” to collect donations and “heal our nation.”
Ben Carson met his wife, the former Candy Rustin, at Yale. They were married in 1975 and have three sons: Murray, B.J., and Rhoeyce… Ben Carson is a member of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church… Ben Carson was played by Cuba Gooding, Jr. in the 2009 TV movie Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story… Ben Carson’s 2013 comments on gay marriage included, “Marriage is between a man and a woman… No group, be they gays, be they NAMBLA, be they people who believe in bestiality — it doesn’t matter what they are, they don’t get to change the definition.” Carson later said he had chosen his words poorly and that while he didn’t approve of gay marriage, “I certainly believe gay people should have all the rights that anybody else has.”