Inspiring people: Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris is the Vice President of the United States of America. She was elected vice president after a long history of public service, having been elected attorney general of San Francisco, attorney general of California and senator of the United States. Vice President Harris was born in Oakland to parents who immigrated from India and Jamaica. She graduated from Howard University and the University of California Hastings School of Law.

Her parents were activists and instilled in Vice President Harris a strong sense of justice. They took her to civil rights rallies and introduced her to role models: from Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall to civil rights leader Constance Baker Motley, whose work motivated her to become a prosecutor.

In 1990, Vice President Harris joined the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office where she specialized in prosecuting child rape cases. She later served as the Chief Counsel for the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office and later was the Chief of the Children and Families Division for the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office.

She was elected as a San Francisco District Attorney in 2003. In that role, Vice President Harris created a revolutionary program to give people on drug charges for the first time the opportunity to earn a high school degree and find employment. The program was designated as a national model of innovation for law enforcement by the United States Department of Justice.

In 2010, Vice President Harris was elected as the attorney general of California and oversaw the largest state justice department in the United States. She established the state’s first Child Justice Office and instituted several first-of-a-kind reforms to ensure greater transparency and accountability in the criminal justice system.
In 2017, Vice President Harris was sworn in in the United States Senate. In her first speech, she spoke on behalf of immigrants and refugees who were under attack at the time. As a member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, she fought for better protections for DREAMers and called for better oversight of substandard conditions in immigration detention centers. On the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, she worked with members of both parties to protect Americans from foreign threats and drafted bipartisan legislation to help protect American elections. She visited Iraq, Jordan and Afghanistan to meet with service members and assess the situation on the ground.

On August 11, 2020, Vice President Harris accepted President Joe Biden’s invitation to become his ballot partner and help unify the nation. She is the first woman, the first African American, the first South Asian American to be elected vice president, as was the case with other positions she has held.

Photo by Pixabay on
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