Following her Law degree, Kamala worked as a deputy district attorney in Oakland. She quickly rose through the ranks, becoming district attorney in 2004.
In 2010, she was narrowly elected attorney general of California and becoming the first female and the first African American to hold the post.
In 2012 Harris delivered a memorable address at the Democratic National Convention, raising her national profile. She was later recruited to run for the U.S. Senate seat held by Barbara Boxer, who was retiring. In early 2015, Harris declared her candidacy, and on the campaign trail she called for immigration and criminal-justice reforms, increases to the minimum wage, and protection of women’s reproductive rights. She easily won the 2016 election.
After taking office in January 2017, Harris began serving on both the Select Committee on Intelligence and the Judiciary Committee, among other assignments.
In 2019, Harris published her memoir, The Truths We Hold: An American Journey. Shortly thereafter Harris announced that she was seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020. From the outset she was seen as one of the leading contenders.
Although Harris’s support initially increased, by September 2019 her campaign was in serious trouble, and in December she dropped out of the race. She continued to maintain a high profile, notably becoming a leading advocate for social-justice reform following the May 2020 death of George Floyd. As racial injustice became a major issue in the United States, many Democrats called on Biden to select an African American woman as his vice presidential running mate.
In August 2020, Biden chose Harris, and she thus became the first Black woman to appear on a major party’s national ticket. In November 2020, following Biden’s election, she became the first Black woman to be elected vice president of the United States.