Loretta Lynch has been sworn in as the United States' new attorney general.
Vice President Joe Biden led the ceremony at the Justice Department to make Lynch the nation's top law enforcement official.
Biden said "its about time this woman is being sworn in," referencing her six-month confirmation process that included disagreements over her support of President Barack Obama's executive actions on immigration and delays caused by other contentious legislation. The Senate voted to confirm her Thursday.
He added the Lynch is incredibly qualified for the post.
Lynch is the first African American woman to serve as attorney general. She follows Eric Holder, who was the first black man to hold the job before stepping down after six years.
She takes over the Justice Department with less than two years left in Mr. Obama's term, and at a time of heightened scrutiny of police conduct and civil rights in the United States with officer-involved deaths that have drawn large protests.
Some critics faulted Holder for what they said were actions that were too quick to criticize police in those cases.