Advertisement

The 5 places that shaped Kamala Harris, including Montreal

This January 1970 photo shows her, left, with her sister, Maya, and mother, Shyamala, outside their apartment in Berkeley.
This January 1970 photo shows her, left, with her sister, Maya, and mother, Shyamala, outside their apartment in Berkeley.
(Kamala Harris Campaign / Associated Press)

There’s no easy way to sum up the U.S. senator who is sharing the Democratic ticket with Joe Biden. But these five North American locations have played crucial roles in the personal history of Kamala Harris:

1. Oakland and Berkeley

Kamala Harris, the daughter of immigrants from India and Jamaica, stands outside the Berkeley home where she grew up.
Kamala Harris, the daughter of immigrants from India and Jamaica, stands outside the Berkeley home where she grew up.
(David Butow / For The Times)

Harris was born in Oakland to parents who had come to California to study at UC Berkeley. Her father, who has roots in Jamaica, was an economics professor; her mother, who had roots in India, was a cancer researcher. Harris spent several years as a child in Oakland and Berkeley, but after her parents divorced, she and her mother moved to Canada.

2. Montreal

A cyclist rolls through Old Montreal near the dome of the Marché Bonsecours.
(Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)
Advertisement

From seventh grade to the end of high school, Harris and her mother lived in Montreal and its Westmount neighborhood. Harris graduated from Westmount High School in 1981.

3. Howard University, Washington, D.C.

U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) speaks to reporters after announcing her candidacy for President at Howard University in 2019.
Kamala Harris speaks to reporters after announcing her candidacy for president of the United States, at Howard University on Jan. 21, 2019, in Washington, D.C.
(Al Drago / Getty Images)

Harris earned her bachelor’s degree at Howard University in 1986, majoring in political science and economics. In the summer after her second year, she interned in the mailroom of U.S. Sen. Alan Cranston (D.-Calif.)

4. San Francisco

San Francisco City Hall in U.S. flag colors on Sept. 11, 2016.
San Francisco City Hall in U.S. flag colors on Sept. 11, 2016.
(EPA / Eugene Garcia)
Advertisement

After graduating from the University of California Hastings College of Law in San Francisco, Harris passed the bar examination and worked her way up in the Alameda County and San Francisco County district attorney’s offices. Harris was San Francisco district attorney from 2004 to 2010.

5. Santa Barbara Courthouse

Santa Barbara's landmark county courthouse has a clock tower that visitors can climb for views of the coast and town.
Santa Barbara’s landmark county courthouse has a clock tower that visitors can climb for views of the coast and town.
(Susan Spano )

Harris and her husband, Douglas Emhoff, an entertainment and intellectual property attorney, married in 2014 at the Santa Barbara Courthouse. Harris was three years into a six-year stint as California’s attorney general.

6. Washington, D.C., again

Kamala Harris, campaigning for the U.S. Senate seat she went on to win in 2016, strikes a pose in Los Angeles.
Kamala Harris, campaigning for the U.S. Senate seat she went on to win in 2016.
(Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)
Advertisement

In 2016, Harris was elected to the U.S. Senate, leaving her California job to take office early in 2017. She sought the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in 2019, later withdrew, and on Tuesday was tapped to stand for vice president on the Democratic ticket with Joe Biden.


Advertisement