Native Chicagoan Anthony Halmon is only a freshman at Cornell University, but he’s already made a name for himself. In 2013, the young father came up with the idea to create a pacifier that doubles as a thermometer. It’s called the Thermofier. The idea came from his concern for his young daughter and not always being able to easily tell when the baby wasn’t well. His invention earned Halmon a visit to the White House and a meeting with President Obama.
Halmon, who is interested in studying sociology and government, is from Chicago’s Inglewood area. He described it as a “tough, rough” place with “a lot of violence and gangs.” Growing up, he said, he was accosted regularly by various gang members due to the reputation of one of his relatives. The year that his father died (his sophomore year in high school) was also the year he learned he was to be a father. The teen made it his goal to better his life for the sake of his daughter, who is now 3 years old.