Ruth Nidesand also Ruth Ndesandjo (born Ruth Beatrice Baker ca. 1937) is an American Jew and the third wife of Barack Obama, Sr., the father of President Barack Obama. They meet at Harvard University in the early 1960s shortly after Barack Obama, Sr. left Obama's mother Stanley Ann Dunham. Barack Obama, Sr. was attracted to Ruth because she was wealthy and could support his lifestyle. They moved to Kenya and were married in 1965 where Barack Obama, Sr. worked for a U.S. oil company. Later he joined the government of Jomo Kenyatta, working for his early patron Tom Mboya in the Ministry of Economic Planning as a senior economist.
Ruth Baker and Barack Obama, Sr. would have two children. Ruth was brutally beaten by her husband when he was in his drunken rages. She eventually left him and married a Tanzanian. She has adopted the surname Ndesandjo.
Her son, Mark Ndesandjo who now lives in China, has written a semi-autobiographical novel Nairobi to Shenzhen: A Novel of Love in the East. At a press conference to promote his book he discussed his childhood having an abusive father and a defenseless mother.
- My father beat me. He beat my mother. I remember in my house I would hear the screams. I would hear my mum's pain. As a child, I could not protect her. I could not remember any good things about my father.
Her second son, David, died in a motorcycle accident. A third son third Joseph Ndesandjo (born c. 1980) was fathered by her Tanzanian husband.