“I'm Ben Carson, and I'm a candidate for President of the United States,” he declared at the Music Hall Center of the Performing Arts.
Carson’s first day as a presidential candidate took him to three separate events in his hometown: a prayer breakfast, an assembly at a high school named after him and the speech at the music hall.
And the long-shot candidate who is known for his fiery -- and sometimes controversial rhetoric -- dished out some choice lines, noting, “I'm not politically correct.”
Here’s a look at some of the newly-minted presidential candidate’s most memorable one-liners:
“Young ladies, it's a mistake to have a baby while you're young and out of wedlock. Wait and preserve yourself. Don't just give yourself away to some guy. Don't look at the stuff on television thinking I'm gonna be cool because guess what you're gonna get a disease and it's gonna affect you for the rest of your life, so don't do it. And when you have that baby, young lady, it usually ends your education and that's the problem. And it usually sends that baby into poverty.”
On Media Misinterpretation
"She even learned how to play pool because she knew I was a pool player. And she actually wins sometimes but most of the times I beat her," Carson said of her wife. "I should be careful because there’s some media in here, and their headline will be: ‘Carson Admits He Beats His Wife.’”
On His Childhood Music Tastes
“I was a black kid in Motown listening to Mozart. I tried to convince them that the Mo in Motown was Mozart.”
On His Mother
"I promise if my mother was Secretary of Treasury we would not be in a deficit."
On Divine Intervention:
“I was going to fail chemistry, and I wasn't going to become a doctor, so I prayed, ‘Lord tell me what you really want me to do’ -- or preferably work a miracle."
“You can make the unemployment rate anything you want it to be based on what numbers you include and what numbers you exclude.”
"Stop being loyal to a party or to a man, and use your brain."
“You're not there to have fun but to learn. You can have fun later on."
His Advice to Reporters
"You have a sacred occupation. Please don't abuse it."