93 Facts About Ben Carson


Ben Carson retired from medicine in 2013; at the time, he was professor of neurosurgery, oncology, plastic surgery, and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.


Ben Carson gained national fame among political conservatives after delivering a speech at the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast which was perceived as critical of the policies of President Barack Obama.


Ben Carson performed strongly in early polls, leading to his being considered a frontrunner for the nomination during the fall of 2015.


Ben Carson withdrew from the race after Super Tuesday, following a string of disappointing primary results, and endorsed Donald Trump.


Ben Carson is one of the most prominent Black conservatives in America.


Ben Carson has received numerous honors for his neurosurgery work, including more than 60 honorary doctorate degrees and numerous national merit citations.


In 2008, Ben Carson was bestowed the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States.


Ben Carson was the subject of the 2009 TV film Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story, wherein he was portrayed by Cuba Gooding Jr.


Robert Ben Carson was a Baptist minister, but he later became a Cadillac automobile plant laborer.


Ben Carson's mother was 13 and his father was 28 when they married, and after his father finished his military service, they moved from Chattanooga, Tennessee, to Detroit, where they lived in a large house in the Indian Village neighborhood.


Ben Carson's older brother, Curtis, was born in 1949, when his mother was 20.


In 1950, Ben Carson's parents purchased a new 733-square foot single-family detached home on Deacon Street in the Boynton neighborhood in southwest Detroit.


Ben Carson was born in Detroit, Michigan, on September 18,1951.


Ben Carson's Detroit Public Schools education began in 1956 with kindergarten at the Fisher School and continued through first, second, and the first half of third grade, during which time he was an average student.


In Boston, Ben Carson's mother attempted suicide, had several psychiatric hospitalizations for depression, and for the first time began working outside the home as a domestic worker, while Ben Carson and his brother attended a two-classroom school at the Berea Seventh-day Adventist church where two teachers taught eight grades, and the vast majority of time was spent singing songs and playing games.


Ben Carson attended the predominantly white Higgins Elementary School for fifth and sixth grades and the predominantly white Wilson Junior High School for seventh and the first half of eighth grade.


Ben Carson attended the predominantly black Hunter Junior High School for the second half of eighth grade.


At the age of eight, Ben Carson dreamt of becoming a missionary doctor, but five years later he aspired to the lucrative lifestyles of psychiatrists portrayed on television, and his brother bought him a subscription to Psychology Today for his 13th birthday.


Ben Carson attended the predominantly black Southwestern High School for grades nine through twelve, graduating third in his class academically.


Ben Carson served as a laboratory assistant in the high school's biology, chemistry, and physics school laboratories beginning in grades 10,11, and 12, respectively, and worked as a biology laboratory assistant at Wayne State University the summer between grade 11 and 12.


Ben Carson said he once tried to hit his mother on the head with a hammer over a clothing dispute, while in the ninth grade he tried to stab a friend who had changed the radio station.


Ben Carson said the intended victim, whose identity he wants to protect, was a classmate, a friend, or a close relative.


Ben Carson then questioned the extent of the effort CNN had exerted in the investigation.


Ben Carson has said that he protected white students in a biology lab after a race riot broke out at his high school in response to the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.


The Wall Street Journal confirmed the riot but could not find anyone who remembered Ben Carson sheltering white students.


Ben Carson's SAT college admission test scores ranked him somewhere in the low 90th percentile.


Ben Carson wanted to attend college farther away than his brother who was at the University of Michigan.


Ben Carson says he narrowed his college choices to Harvard or Yale but could only afford the $10 application fee to apply for only one of them.


Ben Carson was accepted by Yale and offered a full scholarship covering tuition, room and board.


Ben Carson said he would have readily accepted his responsibility to fight had he been drafted, but he "identified strongly with the anti-war protesters and the revolutionaries" and enthusiastically voted for anti-war Democratic presidential candidate George McGovern in 1972.


At Yale, Ben Carson had a part-time job on campus as a student police aide.


Ben Carson said the University of Michigan had offered him a scholarship.


Ben Carson said other students walked out in protest when they discovered the retest was significantly harder than the original examination, but that he alone finished the test.


On doing so, Ben Carson said he was congratulated by the course instructor, who told him the retest was a hoax intended to find "the most honest student in the class".


Ben Carson said the professor awarded him $10 and that a photographer for the Yale Daily News was present to take his picture, which appeared in the student newspaper with a story about the experiment.


The Wall Street Journal attempted to verify Ben Carson's account, reporting that Yale undergraduate courses were identified with only two digits in the early 1970s, that Yale had offered no course called "Perceptions 301" at the time, and that Ben Carson's photo had never appeared in the Yale Daily News.


Ben Carson entered the University of Michigan Medical School in 1973, and at first he struggled academically, doing so poorly on his first set of comprehensive exams that his faculty adviser recommended he drop out of medical school or take a reduced academic load and take longer to finish.


Ben Carson continued with a regular academic load, and his grades improved to average in his first year of medical school.


Ben Carson was then accepted by the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine neurosurgery program, where he served one year as a surgical intern and five years as a neurosurgery resident, completing the final year as chief resident in 1983.


Ben Carson then spent one year as a Senior Registrar in neurosurgery at the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital in Nedlands, a suburb of Perth, Western Australia.


In 1987, Carson was the lead neurosurgeon of a 70-member surgical team that separated conjoined twins Patrick and Benjamin Binder, who had been joined at the back of the head.


Ben Carson participated in four subsequent high-risk conjoined-twin separations, including a 1997 operation on craniopagus Zambian twins Joseph and Luka Banda, which resulted in a normal neurological outcome.


In March 2013, Ben Carson announced he would retire as a surgeon, saying he would "much rather quit when I'm at the top of my game".


Ben Carson has written many articles in peer-reviewed journals and six bestselling books published by Zondervan, an international Christian media and publishing company.


Ben Carson has denied being paid by Mannatech to do anything else, saying he has been a "prolific speaker" who has addressed many groups.


Ben Carson's image appeared on the corporation's website in 2014, and in the same year, he praised their "glyconutrient" supplements in a PBS special that was featured on the site.


Ben Carson had been doing some fundraising for the hospital and some other chairs about that time, and he simply got things mixed up.


In July 2013, Ben Carson was hired by The Washington Times as a weekly opinion columnist.


Over that period, Ben Carson received over $4 million from 141 paid speeches, between $1.1 million and $6 million in book royalties, between $200,000 and $2 million as a contributor to The Washington Times and Fox News, and between $2 million and $10 million as a member of the boards of Kellogg Co.


Ben Carson resigned from Costco's board in mid-2015, after serving on it for more than 16 years.


Ben Carson was chairman of the Baltimore-based biotechnology company Vaccinogen from August 2014 until the announcement of his US presidential bid in May 2015.


Ben Carson, who had been registered as a Republican, changed his registration to independent in the 1990s after watching Republicans impeach President Clinton for perjury regarding an extramarital affair with Monica Lewinsky.


In February 2013, Ben Carson said he was not a member of any political party.


Ben Carson was the keynote speaker at the National Prayer Breakfast on February 7,2013.


The Wall Street Journal mentioned that the Draft Ben Carson Committee had chairmen in all of Iowa's 99 counties, and that Ben Carson had recently led two separate Public Policy polls for the state of Pennsylvania.


On May 2,2015, Ben Carson proclaimed that in two days he was going to make a major announcement on his decision on whether to enter the presidential race.


The announcement speech was preceded by a choir singing "Lose Yourself" with Ben Carson sitting in the audience.


In November 2015, Ben Carson's campaign aired a 60-second TV advertisement in which excerpts from Ben Carson's stump speech were intercut with a rap by an artist named Aspiring Mogul.


Ben Carson believes the Baltic states, current NATO members, should "get involved in NATO".


Ben Carson advocated capturing a "big energy field" outside of Anbar, Iraq, which he said could be accomplished "fairly easily".


On March 2, following the Super Tuesday 2016 primaries, Ben Carson announced that he did "not see a political path forward" and would not attend the next Republican debate in Detroit.


Ben Carson said, "[T]his grassroots movement on behalf of 'We the People' will continue", indicating that he would give more details later in the week.


Ben Carson questioned whether his campaign was economically sabotaged from within.


On March 11,2016, a week after Ben Carson ended his presidential campaign, he endorsed Trump, calling him part of "the voice of the people to be heard".


Later that month, Ben Carson revealed a list of potential vice-presidential candidates in an interview with The Washington Post.


Ben Carson received the support of seven delegates at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.


Under the federal budget proposed by Trump in 2017, HUD's budget for the fiscal year 2018 would be cut by $6.2 billion and the Community Development Block Grant, a program which Ben Carson praised in a trip to Detroit as HUD secretary, would be eliminated.


Ben Carson suggested that federal funds for housing in Detroit could be part of an expected infrastructure bill.


In July 2017, during his keynote address at the LeadingAge Florida annual convention, Ben Carson stated his concern about "seniors who become destitute" and reported that the Department of Housing and Urban Development had increased public housing programs for the elderly by an unspecified number.


Internal documents obtained by The Washington Post under the Freedom of Information Act showed that the younger Ben Carson "put people he'd invited in touch with his father's deputies, joined agency staff on official conference calls about the listening tour and copied his wife on related email exchanges".


In February 2018, the HUD inspector general's office confirmed that it was looking into the role Ben Carson's family played at the department.


On November 9,2020, Ben Carson tested positive for COVID-19 after attending President Trump's Election Night party.


Ben Carson initially treated himself with a homeopathic oleander extract on the recommendation of Mike Lindell, the founder of My Pillow, Inc.


Oleander was previously rejected by the Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for COVID-19 and Ben Carson received criticism for promoting an unscientific homeopathic treatment.


Ben Carson said that President Trump had given him access to the drug.


Ben Carson received criticism for spending up to $31,000 on a dining set in his office in late 2017.


On March 20,2018, Ben Carson testified before the United States House Committee on Appropriations that he had "dismissed" himself from the decision to buy the $31,000 dining room set and "left it to my wife, you know, to choose something".


Ben Carson was accused by members of the Department of Housing and Urban Development of making transphobic remarks at a meeting in San Francisco in September 2019.


Ben Carson warned that "big, hairy men" might infiltrate homeless shelters for women, prompting one woman to walk out.


Joe Kennedy III of Massachusetts and Jennifer Wexton of Virginia called for his resignation, but Ben Carson said the accusations were a "mischaracterization".


In 2021, Ben Carson founded the American Cornerstone Institute or ACI, a conservative think tank centered around advancing policies that promote "faith, liberty, community, and life".


In 1981 Ben Carson's wife became pregnant with twins before miscarrying in the fifth month of her pregnancy.


Ben Carson was baptized at Burns Seventh-day Adventist Church in Detroit.


Ben Carson has served as a local elder and Sabbath School teacher in the Seventh-day Adventist Church and is a member of Spencerville Seventh-day Adventist Church.


In keeping with his Seventh-day Adventist faith, Ben Carson announced in 2014 his belief "that the United States will play a big role" in the coming apocalypse.


Ben Carson endorsed Seventh-day Adventist theology, which includes belief in a literal reading of the first chapters of Genesis.


In 1998, Ben Carson was invited to give the commencement address at the prominent Andrews University, the flagship institution of the Seventh Day Adventist school system.


When questioned about it again in 2015, Ben Carson stood by this assertion.


Consistent with the practice of many Adventists, Ben Carson was at one point a lacto-ovo vegetarian.


Ben Carson has said his main reason for becoming vegetarian was health concerns, including avoiding parasites and heart disease, and he emphasizes the environmental benefits of vegetarianism.


Ben Carson's transition was made easier because he had eaten little meat for aesthetic reasons as a child, and he readily adopted his wife's vegetarianism because she does much of the cooking in their household.


Ben Carson is a member of the American Academy of Achievement, Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, and the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans.


Ben Carson has been awarded 38 honorary doctorate degrees and dozens of national merit citations.