Kamala Harris has made history as United States’ first female, first Black and first South Asian vice president.
Harris was sworn into office Wednesday evening, taking over from her predecessor Mike Pence.
During her first speech as vice president-elect, Harris had noted her historic emergence as the first woman to do so.
“While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last,” she said in Wilmington, Delaware.
“Because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities, and to the children of our country, regardless of your gender, our country has sent you a clear message: Dream with ambition, lead with conviction and see yourselves in a way that others may not, simply because they’ve never seen it before. But know that we will applaud you every step of the way.”
Harris attended Howard University, a historically Black university in Washington. Her time at Howard, where she joined Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., profoundly shaped her political vision.
She was born in Oakland, California, in 1964, to parents who raised her in a bassinet of civil rights activism.
Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, an Indian immigrant, was a breast cancer researcher; she died of cancer in 2009. Harris’ father, Donald, is a Jamaican American professor of economics. The couple divorced in 1972.