Kamala Devi Harris became the first woman who assumes the office of the Vice-President of the United States. It was a historic moment in the history of the United States as Harris was the first Indian-American, the first African-American woman the Asian-African descent and the first graduate of an HBCU. Harris is well known for breaking barriers. She has lent her voice to healthcare reform, progressive tax reform, a ban on assault weapons, the dream act, and federal de-scheduling of cannabis. She rose to prominence for thorough questioning of officials from the Trump Administration in a Senate hearing that included Brett Kavanaugh, a Supreme Court nominee charged with sexual assault.
Her parents were immigrants to the United States, and she was born on the 20th of October; 1964, in Oakland, California. Her mother had Indian-origin credentials, and her father had Jamaican origin. After her mother separated from her father, she was raised by her single parent (mother) and his younger sister. Her mother's name is Shyamala Gopalan Harris. Shyamala Gopalan has Indian Tamil origin and is a biologist by profession. Her mother came to the United States at the age of 19 as a graduate student in nutrition and endocrinology from the University of California, Berkeley. Her father came to the United States from British Jamaica. He was a professor at Kamala and had witnessed the Civil Right movement very closely during her childhood days, and these memories of the movement give her the required strength to voice against injustice.
When Kamala was 12 years old, she and her sister shifted to Montreal, Quebec, along with her mother, where Shyamala had decided to work in a research and teaching position at McGill University-affiliated Jewish General Hospital. She was taught American, African and Indian cultures during her childhood. She spent major time of his childhood days in Oakland. Her mother used to take Kamala to their grandparent in India, and she also ensured that Kamala should also be grounded in the American-African. Her mother knew that the U.S. would see Kamala and Maya as black girls. Her mother was determined to raise her child as a proud, confident black woman. Her sister Maya is working as a lawyer and is MSNBC political analyst, and Meena, Harris's niece, has worked in uber as a former head of strategy and leadership. Now she is the founder of the Phenomenal Women Action Campaign.
Kamala received her matriculation degree from Howard University (Historically black colleges and universities) in Washington. Later she got a law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, based in San Francisco. Kamala started her professional career in the Alameda County District Attorney's office. Later in 2003, she became District Attorney of the City and County of San Francisco.
Harris as a lawyer had already started breaking glass ceilings in 2010 and became the first woman to occupy the office of California's Attorney General. While she was attorney general, she tied the knot with the lawyer Doug Emhoff. She also became the stepmother of Doug Emhoff's children. Tony West, her brother-in-law, was a former senior official in the United States Department of Justice and presently working as a General Counsel of Uber.
Harris, in 1990 became Deputy district attorney in Alameda County, California. She also became part of the State Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board and the California Medical Assistance Commission. Appointment to the State Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board was done by the Speaker of the California Assembly, Willie Brown, who said he was dating Harris as well.
Harris applied for 6 months' leave in 1994, and then she resumed her works in work. It was particularly covered in the media, and it is said that it is a usual move by Californian Political leaders to appoint their confidants and loyal people to profitable positions in the commissions. However, Harris has always defended claims and insinuations.
Terence Hallinan, San Francisco district attorney, in February 1998, deputed as an Assistant district attorney. Harris was also appointed as chief of the Career Criminal Division, overlooking over five other attorneys, prosecuting crimes like robbery, burglary, sexual assault and homicide cases. Harris confronted Darrell Salomon, Hallinan's assistant, on the issue of Proposition 21, which permits prosecutors the option to try juvenile defendants in superior courts instead of Juvenile court. Harris voiced against it. She quit the position after she was removed from the case.
Harris had the Family and Children's Services Division look over child abuse and neglect issues. She started working for city attorney Louise Renne at the San Francisco City Hall. Renne supported Kamala in her D.A. campaign. Harris dated Montel William for a brief period in 2000. They both acknowledged this fact.
As District Attorney of San Francisco: 2004-2011
Harris decided to fight against Hallinan and Bill Fazio for District Attorney of San Francisco. Harris was not a popular candidate among the three of them. They contested the election and moved to the advanced general election, where Harris received 33% vote, and Hallinan received 37%. While in the election process, she promised never to seek the death penalty and three-strike offenders only be prosecuted. Harris had launched a fierce campaign with the support of Senator Dianne Feinstein, former mayor Willie Brown, comedian Eddie Griffin and Chris Rock and writer and cartoonist Aaron McGruder. Harris tried to present her differently by attacking Hallinan's performance. She cited the reason for demitting the office that it was technologically backward and stressed that 52% conviction rate in serious crime whereas 83 % statewide average conviction crime rate. She alleged that his office is not taking concrete steps to prevent gun violence and made a scathing attack on accepting plea bargains in domestic violence cases. n
Harris won the poll by hopping 56% of the vote, and it was a historic moment because she was the first person of colour to be elected as district attorney of San Francisco. Harris fought unopposed for the next term in November 2007.
Harris developed an environmental crimes unit in 2005. City attorney Dennis Herrera and Kamala Harris 2007 probed San Francisco Supervisor Ed Jew in violation of residency requirements to safeguard his supervisor position.
Attorney General of California: 2011-2017
She announced her intention to fight for the office of Attorney General of California. She also conditioned that she would contest the poll only when then-Attorney General Jerry Brown did not wish to seek another term. Brown decided to run for governor, and Harris tried to gather support from influential California democrats. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California's senator Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa and United Farm Workers co-founder Dolores Huerta came in support at the time of the Democratic primary.
She defeated Alberto Torrico and Chris Kelly and received a 33.6% vote in the 8th June 2010 primary. Harris faced Republican Los Angeles County District attorney Steve Cooley in the General election, who was leading in most of the race. Cooley was a non-partisan candidate keeping away from Republican candidate Meg Whitman's election campaign. The election did take place, and Cooley accepted his defeat. It paved the way for Harris to become the first Indian- American origin to occupy the office of Attorney General.
Harris publicly announced her wish for another term as Attorney general and completed his nomination paperwork. Some leading print media like The Sacramento Bee, Los Angeles Times and Los Angeles Daily News have come out to support Harris's re-election. Harris won the election and defeated the Republican Candidate Ronald Gold.
United States Senate
After being U.S. Senator for 20 years, Senator Barbara Boxer declared that she would not contest the 2016 senate election. Barbara Boxer was a senator from California. After this announcement, Harris declared her intention to fight for a senate seat. She was the top choice to lead a campaign for election.
In the 2016 election, California Senate Election, in which two candidates in the primary would make advance to the general election irrespective of party. Kamala Harris registered 78% of the California Democratic Party Vote at the party convention. It will allow Harris to receive financial endorsements from the party for its campaign. Harris received support from Governor Jerry Brown. Harris was pitted against her fellow congresswoman and Democrat Loretta Sanchez in the General Election. Harris also received endorsement from President Barack Obama and Vice-President Joe Biden. Harris, in November 2016 Election, received 60% of the vote and defeated Sanchez. Harris committed that she would defend the immigrants from the decision of President-elect- Donald Trump and made their decision clear to remain Attorney General at the end of 2016. While being in the Senate, she has been a member of key committees, and the committees are:
Select Committee on Intelligence
Committee on the Budget
2020 Presidential Election
Harris has always been a top candidate for the 2020 Democratic nomination for the President. Harris pitched her candidature for President of the United States on the 21st of January 2019. After the announcement of her candidature, she raised record donations. According to police, around 20000 people registered to witness her campaign launch event in California on the 27th of January.
Harris decided to keep herself out of the 2020 Democratic nominations due to a shortage of funds and supported Joe Biden as the Presidential candidate.
Race for the Vice-President
Biden in February registered a thumping victory in the 2020 South Carolina Democratic primary, having support from the House whip Jim Clyburn. Clyburn advised Biden to select black women as a candidate for the office of Vice-President of the United States.
The demand for black women as vice president accelerated in the recent wake of the brutal murder of George Floyd and its related protests and demonstrations. Several media outlets like the New York Times and CNN started reporting on Harris as an emerging front runner for the office of Vice-President.
Biden, on the 11th of August 2020, declared Harris as his choice for the Vice-Presidential candidate. Both this duo registered a landslide victory in the 2020 United States Presidential Election.
Award and Honors
Bio in Brief
Physical Statistics and Measurement
Political and Law Career Journey
49thVice President of the United States
Assumed office on the 20th of January 2021
President: Joe Biden
Preceded by: Mike Pence
United State Senator from California
Term Period: the 3rd of January 2017- the 18th of January 2021
Preceded by: Barbara Boxer
Succeeded by: Alex Padilla
32nd Attorney General of India
Term period: the 3rd of January 2011- the 18th of January 2017
Governor: Jerry Brown
Preceded by: Jerry Brown
Succeeded by: Xavier Becerra
27th District Attorney of San Francisco
Term period: the 8th of January 2004 - the 3rd of January 2011
Preceded by: Terence Hallinan
Succeeded by: George Gascon
Twitter Handle: @KamalaHarris
Instagram Handle: kamalaharris