Michelle Obama speaks at Apple developers conference

SAN JOSE (KTVU) -- Former First Lady Michelle Obama was in Silicon Valley on Tuesday to speak to participants at Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference, one of a few public addresses she has given since leaving the White House in January.

Obama participated in an open session for a "fireside chat." The session was closed to the news media and she did not take questions from the audience. Obama also did not discuss environmental or political issues.

"It was an inspirational talk, not political," one participant said of her address, which briefly touched on climate change when Obama said the phenomenon is real to applause from the audience.

"She'll talk about empowering people from all walks of life," Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the conclusion of his keynote address on the first day of the five-day conference.


Under Cook's leadership, Apple has become more vocal on political and social issues. Along with taking strong stances on privacy and security, the company has put itself at the front of social causes like LGBT rights, racial equality and the tech industry's need to improve workforce diversity.

It also has condemned actions by the current US federal government, like President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement.

Cook wrote in a letter to employees that he pleaded with Trump to stay in the Paris climate accord, "but it wasn't enough." He wrote, "Climate change is real and we all share a responsibility to fight it. I want to reassure you that today's developments will have no impact on Apple's efforts to protect the environment."

KTVU reporter Allie Rasmus contributed to this report.