Elizabeth Warren announces 2020 presidential bid: 5 things to know about the Massachusetts senator

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., officially announced her 2020 presidential bid on Feb. 9.

"This is the fight of our lives. The fight to build an America where dreams are possible, an America that works for everyone. I am in that fight all the way," she told supporters in Lawrence, Mass. "And that is why I stand here today: to declare that I am a candidate for President of the United States of America."

In the announcement, she called President Trump "the latest -- and most extreme -- symptom of what's gone wrong in America."

"It won’t be enough to just undo the terrible acts of this administration. We can’t afford to just tinker around the edges – a tax credit here, a regulation there. Our fight is for big, structural change," she said to cheers from the crowd.

Warren took a major step in her political career by launching an exploratory committee for president in late December.

She made a splash on Dec. 31 when she released a campaign-style video that slams the "corrupt" government, making an appeal to her party's base.

"[The government] has been bought and paid for by a bunch of billionaires and giant corporations that think they get to dictate the rules that affect everyone," Warren tells supporters, adding, "that’s not how the government is supposed to work. You know it. I know it. And we know it is time to fight back."


In light of her official presidential bid, here's a look at five things you should know about the lawmaker.

She taught at Harvard

Warren began teaching at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts back in the early 1990s. She started as a visiting professor and eventually landed a role as the Leo Gottlieb Professor of Law, specializing in bankruptcy law. When Warren was hired at the Ivy League school, there were only 60 tenured female professors, according to The Daily Beast.

According to Harvard, Warren has written more than 100 educational articles and ten books. She’s also been awarded several teaching awards — at least two from Harvard.

“National Law Journal named her one of the Most Influential Lawyers of the Decade, TIME magazine has named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world three times, and she has been honored by the Massachusetts Women's Bar Association with the Lelia J. Robinson Award,” Harvard touts in a biography of Warren on its website.

She was previously registered Republican

Running as a Democrat, Warren was open about her party switch during her 2012 Senate run in Massachusetts.

In October 2011, she told The Daily Beast that she was registered Republican well into her 40s.

“I was a Republican because I thought that those were the people who best supported markets. I think that is not true anymore,” Warren, now 69, told the publication. “I was a Republican at a time when I felt like there was a problem that the markets were under a lot more strain. It worried me whether or not the government played too activist a role.”


Warren wouldn’t reveal who exactly she voted for during that time period, though she did hint that she mixed it up over the years.

“There should be some Republicans and some Democrats,” she added.

She's a prominent critic of Wall Street

Warren has been a vocal critic of Wall Street — originally conceiving what became the government's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Former President Barack Obama appointed Warren to serve as assistant to the president and special advisor to the secretary of the treasury on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in September 2010.

"The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will crack down on the abusive practices of unscrupulous mortgage lenders, reinforce the new credit card law we passed banning unfair rate hikes, and ensure that folks aren't unwittingly caught by overdraft fees when they sign up for a checking account. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will be a watchdog for the American consumer, charged with enforcing the toughest financial protections in history. I am very grateful that Elizabeth has agreed to serve in this important role of getting the Consumer Financial Bureau up and running and making it as effective as possible," Obama said in an online statement at the time.

Warren burst onto the national scene during the financial crisis with calls for greater consumer protections. She quickly became one of the party's more prominent liberals even as she sometimes fought with Obama administration officials over their response to the market turmoil.

She was once named "Bostonion of the Year"

In 2009, Warren was named "Bostonion of the Year" by the Boston Globe for her accomplishments as chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel on the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

"The great cause of her life has been defending middle-class Americans against what she calls the 'tricks and traps' the nation’s financial institutions devise to separate those citizens from their money," the Globe wrote in a December 2009 article.

The local newspaper praised Warren's efforts in Washington.

"She is equally scornful of how the credit card companies bury their real brigandage under a blizzard of sub-paragraphs and dependent clauses. And ever since last November, when Senate majority leader Harry Reid persuaded her to take charge of the Congressional Oversight Panel, and even though she is aware that the panel does not have any real enforcement powers, Warren has become a burr under the saddle of official Washington -- plain-spoken, invariably polite, intolerant of business-school persiflage ('That’s a word we don’t use enough!' she exclaims), and utterly contemptuous of conventional wisdom," the publication continued.

She’s the first female senator from Massachusetts

In 2012, Warren defeated incumbent Sen. Scott Brown, a Republican, to become the first female senator in Massachusetts' history.

“I will always carry your stories with me in my heart,” Warren said in a victory speech at the time, according to the Boston Globe. “I won’t just be your senator. I will be your champion.”

Fox News' Adam Shaw and The Associated Press contributed to this report.