Kamala Harris: Timeline & Major Facts

Timeline of Kamala Harris

Here is a look at key events in the life of Senator Kamala Harris, the 2020 vice-presidential candidate for the Democratic Party.

Quick Facts about Kamala Harris

Born: Kamala Devi Harris

Birth Day and Place: October 20, 1964; Oakland, California, United States

Mother: Shyamala Gopalan Harris

Father: Donald Jasper Harris

Siblings: Younger sister – Maya Harris

Education: University of California (Hastings College of the Law); Howard University; Westmount High School

Spouse: Douglas Emhoff (married in 2014)

Political Party: Democratic Party

Elected offices: U.S. Senator from California (2017-); 32nd Attorney General of California (2011-2017); 27th District Attorney for San Francisco (2004-2011)

Most famous for: Running mate for 2020 Democratic Presidential Candidate Joe Biden; First female African-American Attorney General in the State of California; First African American to serve as a running mate for a major political party in America

Kamala Harris: Timeline

1964: Born in Oakland, California to parents Gopalan Harris and Donald J. Harris

1975: Her parents’ marriage comes to an end in a divorce

1976: Kamala, her mother, and her sister move to Montreal, Canada

1976: Enrolls at Notre-Dame-des-Neiges

1981: Graduates from Westmount High School, Quebec, Canada

1982: Enrolls at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

1986: Graduates from Howard with a BA in political science and economics

1987: Moves to California to read law at the University of California – Hastings College of the Law

1989: Graduates from Hastings College of the Law with a Juris Doctor

June, 1990: Passes the California Bar exams

1990: Appointed assistant district attorney in Alameda County, California

1994: Works at the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board

February, 1998: Appointed assistant district attorney at the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office

2000: Resigns her job at the DA office over Proposition 21, a law that sought to try juveniles in the Superior Court instead of the juvenile courts

August, 2000: Works at the Family and Children’s Service Division at San Francisco City Hall

2002: Defeats incumbent Terence Hallinan to become the 27th DA of San Francisco; she pulled 56% of the vote.

2005: Establishes the environmental crimes unit

2007: Buoyed on by her tough stance on crime, Harris goes unopposed in the 2007 District Attorney of San Francisco election

2008: Announced her intentions to run for California attorney general

June, 2010: Secured the Democratic Party nomination for California attorney general; her candidacy was supported by the likes of House speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Barbara Boxer.

Kamala Harris Timeline

Kamala Harris, then San Francisco’s District Attorney,  pictured with Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi in March, 2004

2010: Runs against and defeats Republican Steve Cooley to get elected California attorney general

2011: Establishes the Mortgage Fraud Strike Force to aid foreclosure victims

2013: Combines forces with Assembly speaker John Pérez and Senator Darrell Steinberg in pushing for the Homeowner Bill of Rights

2014: Defeats Republican Ronald Gold and gets re-elected California attorney general; Harris secures 57.5% of the votes, as against Gold’s 42.5%

2015: Declares her intention to run for the Senate seat vacated by long-serving California junior Senator Barbara Boxer

February, 2016: Harris wins almost 80% of the votes at the California Democratic Party convention

November, 2016: Backed by Barack Obama and Joe Biden, Harris runs against Democrat Loretta Sanchez in the general election; Harris secures close to 60 percent of the votes

Senator Kamala Harris

Senator Kamala Harris and Joe Biden

2017: Sharply condemns newly sworn in U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision (Executive Order 13769) to bar citizens from a number of Muslim-dominated countries across the world

2017-2018: Opposes virtually all President Trump’s cabinet picks: Jeff Sessisons (for U.S. Attorney General); Betsy DeVos (for Secretary of Education)

April, 2017: Votes against Trump’s nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court

January, 2018: Following the resignation of Al Franken, Senator Harris gets appointed to the Senate Judiciary Committee

May, 2018: Harris and her colleagues question Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Facebook) over Facebook’s alleged violation of regulations concerning users’ data

September-October 2018: Takes part in the Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh

November 2019: Calls on the authorities to swiftly investigate the death of a transgender woman Roxsana Hernández, who was detained by ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement)

January, 2019: Announces her intention to run for President of the United States in the 2020 U.S. presidential elections

December, 2019: Owing to increasingly poor polls, Harris ends her bid for the Democratic Party presidential ticket

2020: Issues a rallying call for the impeachment trial of Donald Trump to go unimpeded

2020: Supports the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021, which allocates $740 billion to the Department of Defense

August 11, 2020: The presidential candidate of the Democratic Party, Joe Biden, names Kamala Harris as his running mate ahead of the 2020 U.S. Presidential elections; Harris thus becomes the third female vice presidential running mate in American history, coming in behind Geraldine Ferraro and Sarah Palin

Other Interesting Facts about Senator Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris facts

  • Her mother – Shyamala Gopalan Harris – migrated from India at the age of 19 and enrolled as a biology and nutrition student at the University of California, Berkeley. Shyamala proceeded to have a very successful career, receiving her PhD in 1964.
  • Kamala Harris’ father Donald J. Harris – a Jamaican immigrant – enrolled as a graduate student in economics at the University of California, Berkeley. He later became a Stanford University professor emeritus of economics.
  • During her 2002 campaign for DA of San Francisco, she vowed never to support the death penalty. Her campaign was backed by celebs such as Chris Rock and Eddie Griffin, and former mayor Willie Brown. Her previous work experience at the DA office gave her a huge advantage at the election as she was able to point out the deficiencies in incumbent Terrence Hallinan’s leadership. Harris defeated Hallinan, pulling 56% of the votes.
  • In 2020, Kamala Harris was described by former U.S. president Barack Obama as the “ideal partner” to run with Joe Biden in the 2020 US presidential election.
  • Her 2020 nomination as the vice presidential candidate for the Democratic Party makes her the first African American and the first Asian American to hold that honor.

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