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Jonathan Alter, journalist and author of “His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, A Life"
51 minutes

Jonathan Alter, journalist and author of “His Very Best: Jimmy Carter, A Life,” talks with Stewart McLaurin, president of the White House Historical Association, about the remarkable journey of President Jimmy Carter from peanut farmer to Nobel Peace Prize recipient. Filmed at the First Baptist Church of the City of Washington, D.C., the church home of the Carters while they lived in the White House, Stewart and Jonathan met with Rev. Julie Pennington-Russell who showed them rare memorabilia including the Carter family’s original membership cards, where Amy received baptism, and where the President taught adult Sunday school more than a dozen times during his presidency. Born in Plains, Georgia on October 1, 1924, President Carter grew up without running water or electricity. Eager to leave home, he graduated from the United States Naval Academy, married, and served in the U.S. Navy. He and his young wife and kids returned to Plains to help save the family farm after his father passed away. From there he took an interest in politics, working his way up from county boards to the Georgia State Senate to the Governor’s Mansion. Then he and Mrs. Carter launched into national politics, winning the 1976 election and moving to Washington, D.C. with their youngest child and only daughter, Amy. Known for a life of faith and service, the 39th President of the United States became the longest-lived president and half of the longest-married presidential couple in U.S. history. Stewart and Jonathan talk about the Carters’ time in the White House and the decades-long post-presidency they spent creating The Carter Center which works to alleviate human suffering around the world, and among many other things, building homes with Habitat for Humanity, and raising awareness about mental health and caregiving.

The Official 2024 White House Christmas Ornament features a unique design inspired by the life and presidency of Jimmy Carter. You can purchase an ornament at this link.

The podcast host

Stewart McLaurin, Host

President of the White House Historical Association

As President of the White House Historical Association Stewart McLaurin leads the nonpartisan, nonprofit in its mission to preserve, protect, and provide access to White House history. As a lifelong student of history, Stewart is an avid reader, author, and storyteller. Drawing on his own experiences, relationships, and knowledge he provides listeners with a front row seat to history at the White House.