(Dug out and fleshed out from the old E1 "Jimmie Carter" node. Paragraph markings to come.)
James Earl "Jimmy" Carter. 39th US President. A Peanut farmer, and a former Navy engineer and Georgia governor.
(He hatched his presidential campaign while serving as the unknown governor of that obscure Southern state -- considering he'd been on What's My Line? and the panel had no idea who he was, even after he, as contestants did, signed his name on the blackboard when he went onstage, it was a rather Quixotic idea at the time to think he could ascend to the presidency.)
His family and his tiny hometown (Plains) gained national fame as a result of the White House bid and subsequent victory -- pluses: ex-Peace Corps volunteer and all-around senior citizen role model "Miz Lillian", and little "first daughter" Amy Carter, who later grew up to fight alongside Abbie Hoffman during her college years; minuses: Billy Carter (oy!), and Carter Country, the bad sitcom ("Handle it! Handle it!") set in a Plains-like town.
It was he, and not another obscure Southern ex-governor, who was the first jazz-fan prez, holding a jazz party outside 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue that included both popular old farts like Dizzy Gillespie, with whom Carter duetted on "Salt Peanuts", and ultra-obscure avant-garde legends like Cecil Taylor -- you had to pinch yourself at the very thought of that day.
Probably the most decent, moral man to occupy the White House in recent decades, though he failed to live up to some of his high ideals -- the Cold War and OPEC shenanigans made his gig harder than it should have been. Still teaches Sunday School, IIRC. He founded the Carter Center (www.cartercenter.org), an attempt to keep his good intentions alive on the world stage, monitoring elections (unfortunately, the center wasn't called upon to work in Florida in 2000), mediating international disputes, etc. And of course, Jimmy and Rosalyn are the spokespersons for Habitat for Humanity. Good people, the both of 'em.