After eight years of Republican rule, Barack Obama now turns to the task of building a Democratic administration to lead the country out of war and into the financial recovery that he promised.
The president-elect plans to spend the rest of the week at home in Chicago, reviewing the hiring decisions he'll have to make in the next two-and-a-half months.
Campaign advisers have already presented him with names to review for key positions, but say he wasn't focused on filling the jobs before winning the election.
He acknowledged his joyful backers in a victory speech in Chicago's Grant Park, and he also spoke to those who voted against him, saying he hears their voices, needs their help and will be their president, too.
Obama says America faces grave challenges and the "climb will be steep."