(CBS) -- Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris kicked off her campaign for the presidency on Sunday with a rally in her hometown of Oakland, California. The 54-year-old freshman lawmaker announced her bid for the Democratic nomination last week, becoming the fourth female candidate to wade into the already-crowded race.
Hundreds of people crowded the area in front of Oakland City Hall shortly before 1 p.m. local time. Musical acts entertained the crowd and a young girl led the group in reciting the pledge of allegiance before Pastor Demetrius Edwards delivered an impassioned invocation.
Harris took the stage at about 1:40 p.m. local to loud applause from the assembled supporters, many of whom waved signs and cheered as she began her remarks.
The former California secretary of state said she was "so proud to be a daughter of Oakland, California," noting she was born at a nearby hospital.
Harris announced her presidential run last Monday on Martin Luther King Jr. Day after telegraphing her intentions for months. Elected to the Senate in 2016, Harris has used her perch on the powerful Judiciary Committee to quickly elevate her profile. She has laid out a plan to provide middle-class families with tax credits worth thousands of dollars. She wrote a new book published in early January laying out her life story and career as a prosecutor.
The daughter of Jamaican and Indian immigrants, Harris' campaign logo and promotional materials evoked the style used in the 1972 campaign of Shirley Chisholm, the first African American woman to run for the nomination of a major party.
Harris' campaign will have its headquarters in Baltimore, with a second location in Oakland.