Ella Emhoff, Kamala Harris’ Stepdaughter: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

ella emhoff

Getty Ella Emhoff stands with her father, brother and stepmother, Vice President Kamala Harris, at the Biden-Harris inauguration.

Ella Emhoff is Kamala Harris’ stepdaughter and Doug Emhoff’s daughter.

She and her brother, Cole Emhoff, are the children of Emhoff and his first wife, Kerstin Mackin. She was born in 1999. Harris has been their stepmother since 2014. Harris has proclaimed them as an example of an American “modern family.

Emhoff is a student at Parsons School of Design in New York City, according to her LinkedIn. She spoke at the Democratic National Convention in support of her step-mother during the 2020 presidential campaign.

Here’s what you need to know:


1. Emhoff Is Named After Ella Fitzgerald

Harris married Doug Emhoff on August 25, 2014, at a courthouse in Santa Barbara. According to their wedding announcement, Harris’ sister, Maya Harris, officiated the ceremony. This marked Harris’ first marriage and Emhoff’s second. On this day, Harris didn’t just gain a husband — she also gained two stepchildren in Cole and Ella Emhoff.

In a 2019 interview with Elle Magazine, Harris talked about the experience of becoming a step-parent and revealed that her stepchildren were named after Ella Fitzgerald and John Coltrane. Harris said:

Children need consistency; I didn’t want to insert myself into their lives as a temporary fixture because I didn’t want to disappoint them. There’s nothing worse than disappointing a child.

So, we took it slow, and Doug and I put a lot of thought into when and how I would first meet the kids. And that meant waiting. As we waited, anticipation grew. When the day finally came, I had butterflies in my stomach. The plan was to go to a seafood hut off the Pacific Coast Highway called the Reel Inn, a favorite of the kids.

… Cole and Ella could not have been more welcoming. They are brilliant, talented, funny kids who have grown to be remarkable adults. I was already hooked on Doug, but I believe it was Cole and Ella who reeled me in.

Harris also paid tribute to Cole and Ella’s mother, and Doug’s first wife, Kerstin Emhoff. She said, “To know Cole and Ella is to know that their mother Kerstin is an incredible mother. Kerstin and I hit it off ourselves and are dear friends. She and I became a duo of cheerleaders in the bleachers at Ella’s swim meets and basketball games, often to Ella’s embarrassment. We sometimes joke that our modern family is almost a little too functional.”

Cole and Ella Emhoff call Harris ”Momala,” she has said on many occasions. She prefers it to the term “stepmom.”


2. Emhoff Is a Painter & Clothing Designer Who Offers Customized Goods

Ella Emhoff is a student at Parsons School of Design in New York City. Her Instagram page reflects her various creative endeavors, primarily through painting and clothing design.

Emhoff also has her own website, through which she sells customized creations. She sells customized pants, pants and intarsia, tank tops, crochet bucket hats and tote bags. She also has tabs for her ceramics and her paintings, though she doesn’t provide a price for those.


3. Emhoff Appeared in a Bo Burnham Music Video in 2014


Repeat StuffDirected by Rami Hachache Produced by PRETTYBIRD prettybirdus.com/ HAIL SATAN, 69, BUSH DID 9/11 I LOVE MY FANS SO MUCH XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOXO2014-09-24T17:00:08Z

In addition to her passion for painting and knitting new clothing creations, Emhoff has a small acting resume as well. She appeared in Bo Burnham’s 2014 video “Repeat Stuff.” She announced the cameo on her Instagram page, writing, ”Go check out Repeat Stuff by @boburnham Spoiler I die”

It’s unclear how Emhoff and Burnham know each other.

4. Emhoff’s Brother, Cole, Is Pursuing a Career in the Entertainment Industry

Emhoff’s only sibling is her older brother, Cole Emhoff. He attended Colorado College as an undergraduate from 2013 to 2017 and has since returned to his home state of California to pursue a career in the entertainment industry.

According to his LinkedIn, Cole Emhoff worked at William Morris Endeavor, a highly rated talent agency, from 2018 to 2019. During his time there, he worked as an assistant to two agents. Now, he works as an executive assistant at Plan B Entertainment.

Ella Emhoff doesn’t frequently post about her family members on social media, but she did pay tribute to her brother in 2017. She wrote, “happy birthday cole!!!! easily the coolest brother and bestest friend. I love and miss you a lot 😍😍😍”


5. Emhoff Shares Political Posts on Social Media, Championing Causes Like Trans Rights

Emhoff occasionally shares political posts to her Instagram Stories, all of which represent a liberal political stance. On Wednesday, she shared a post from someone else which read:

For anyone who thinks casual transphobia and jokes about gender are funny, this is what trans people, especially trans women of color, deal with. This and worse. At least 18 trans people have been murdered in the US this year. Probably more but we don’t/can’t know for sure.

Neither Emhoff nor her brother has posted publicly about Donald Trump’s presidency, nor about Biden’s presidential campaign.

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