Babbage, John D. (OH 88–11)

Oral History Interview with John D. Babbage (PDF) (1987). Assembly Member, 1949–1952.

The interview includes biographical background information: family, education, training as a lawyer, and work for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (1941–1946). The focus is his period of service from the Riverside area in the state assembly: elections, committee work, legislation carried. Mr. Babbage discusses his efforts to obtain funding for the Riverside campus of the University of California.

Bagley, William T. (OH 90–10)

Oral History Interview with William T. Bagley. (1989). California Transportation Commission, 1983– ; Public Utilities Commission, 1983–1986; Chair, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, 1975–1979.

Bagley discusses his post–legislative career. As the first chairman of the federal Commodity Futures Trading Commission, he was responsible for creating a new body of regulatory law. His discussion of these years and of his subsequent California state service includes observations on the dangers of combining judicial, legislative, and executive power in regulatory commissions, and on the gubernatorial administrations of Edmund G. Brown, Jr., Ronald Reagan, and George Deukmejian. In his discussion of his public law practice with the firm Nossaman, Guthner, Knox, and Elliot, he reflects on the changes in the California legislature since 1974.

Bane, Tom (OH 97–3)

Oral History Interview with Tom Bane (PDF) (1995). Assembly Member, 1958–1964, 1974–1989.

Bane tells of his family background and early life in California and, particularly, Los Angeles. He discusses his initial interest in politics, decision to run for Assembly, and his campaigns. He talks about his unsuccessful bid for Congress in 1964 and the ten years he spent in the financial sector between his assembly service periods. He relates his experiences as a founding member of the Constitution Revision Commission and the switch to a full–time legislature. Bane also discusses his differences with Jesse Unruh, his time as speaker pro tem and his sponsorship of hate crime and anti–discrimination legislation.

Bannai, Paul T. (OH 89–33)

Oral History Interview with Paul T. Bannai. (1989). Assembly Member, 1973–1980.

Bannai relates his family background, early career, and World War II experiences, including his dedication to the reimbursement of interned Japanese–Americans. He discusses his business career, service as an elected official in Gardena, elections to the state assembly, assembly committee service, legislative leadership in the assembly, other Asians in the legislature, and public service after he left the assembly.

Bates, Tom (OH 2004–01)

Oral History Interview with Tom Bates. (2000–2001). Alameda County Supervisor, 1973–1976; California State Assemblyman, 1977–1996.

Tom Bates discusses his family background and early years, college and athletics experiences, and his time in the Army. He talks about his career in real estate and his involvement in campaign management for others' campaigns. Bates details his campaign for Board of Supervisors and discusses local Bay Area issues and land use. He relates information about his campaign for the state legislature and key legislative issues and discusses term limits and challenging them in federal court in the Jones v. Bates lawsuit. He also comments on fundraising and lobbyists, East Bay issues, representing UC Berkeley and UC issues, and his own legislation. He also covers land preservation, racial politics, and his post–legislative activities as mayor of Berkeley.

Baus, Herbert M. (OH 90–22)

Oral History Interview with Herbert Baus (PDF) (1989, 1990). Political Consultant, 1948–1982.

Baus discusses his background, early work on political campaigns, especially those in Los Angeles City during the late forties and fifties. He describes the development of the firm Baus and Ross Co. and the way in which the two partners coordinated their work. He details the many ballot issue and candidate campaigns he consulted on locally, regionally, statewide, and nationally. Baus remarks on the political consulting profession and the changes in the manner in which campaigns are conducted.

Beard, John William (OH 90–26)

Oral History Interview with Hon. John William Beard (PDF) (1987). Senator, 1957–1961; Chair, California Industrial Accident Commission, 1960–1965; Judge, El Cajon Municipal Court, 1980– .

Judge Beard discusses the formation of the California Democratic Council, the workings of the senate prior to full time operation or reapportionment, and the role of lobbyists. He offers profiles of senate leaders and several fellow Democrats and comments on major legislation. The structure and operations of the Industrial Accident Commission and workmen's compensation are treated. Most of the interview covers 1957 to 1965.

Beck, Julian (OH 88–3)

Oral History Interview with Julian Beck (PDF) (1987). Governor's Legislative Secretary, 1958–1959; Assembly Member, 1943–1953.

Beck discusses his family background, education, secondary school teaching, law practice, career and his major accomplishments while a member of the California State Assembly, service as Governor Edmund G. Brown, Sr.'s legislative secretary, and comments on legislative leadership, partisanship, electioneering, fund raising, and lobbying for teachers' groups.

Behr, Peter H. (OH 90–19)

Oral History Interview with Peter H. Behr (PDF) (1988, 1989). Senator, 1971–1978.

Behr discusses open space issues on the Marin County Board of Supervisors, election campaigning, lobbying, and the legislative process in the senate, as illustrated by the progress of his Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, 1971–1972; his bill to require roll call votes in committees; protective legislation for tule elk, herring, and striped bass; malpractice and no–fault insurance legislation; and his efforts to pass property tax reform legislation in 1977 and 1978, including the campaign for his alternative to Proposition 13 in 1978.

Beilenson, Anthony C. (OH 99–3)

Oral History Interview with Anthony C. Beilenson. Vol. 1 (PDF) Vol. 2 (PDF). (1998) Assembly Member, 1962–1966; Senator, 1966–1976; Congressman, 1976–1996.

Beilenson talks about his childhood and family background as well as his college career. He discusses his time in a law practice and his developing interest in politics. He outlines his state assembly, state senate, and House of Representatives service and comments on the differences in each organization. Beilenson speaks about his legislation regarding abortion and campaign finance reform, his campaigns, and his committee work. He also comments on the governors and presidents he worked with and their different styles.

Below, William C. (OH 91–17)

Oral History Interview with William C. Below. (1990). Consultant, Assembly Elections and Reapportionment Committee, 1965–1967.

Below discusses the assembly reapportionment plan for the 1965 redistricting, the creative role of a technician in drawing districts, development and use of computer programs, and direct mail techniques. He also discusses the relationship with Jesse Unruh, Phillip Burton, and Michael Berman.

Bergeson, Marian (OH 2001–5)

Oral History Interview with Marian Bergeson. (2000). Assembly Member, 1978–1984. Senator, 1985–1994.

Bergeson discusses her childhood experiences and family background, her teaching career, and early local political involvement. She outlines her experiences as a Republican woman, her decision to run for Assembly, and her Assembly campaigns. She refers to the Women's Caucus, her support for Howard Berman as Speaker, and her legislation on income tax indexing. Bergeson delineates her reasons for running for Senate, talks about those campaigns, and about particularly important water issues including the Salton Sea and the Peripheral Canal. She also relates her political experiences after leaving the Senate on the Orange County Board of Supervisors during the county's bankruptcy, as the State Secretary of Child Development and Education, and as a member of the State Board of Education.

Betts, Bert A. (OH 88–12)

Oral History Interview with Bert A. Betts (PDF) (1987). State Treasurer, 1958–1966.

Betts discusses the Democratic victory in 1958 and campaigns in 1962 and 1966. He focuses on the history of the State Treasurer's Office, attempts to create flexibility and competition in investment programs and bond sales, increase in bond sales in the 1960s, and modernization of office procedures. He concludes with discussion of the State Treasurer's office in the late 1980s and reflects on its growth under the direction of Jesse Unruh.

Beverly, Robert G. (OH 98-3)

Oral History Interview with Robert G. Beverly. (1997). Assembly Member, 1967-1976; Senator, 1976-1996.

Interview discusses Republican Party politics in the Assembly and Senate and Beverly's participation in the Senate Appropriations Committee and the Senate Rules Committee. He also discusses his political relationships with various governors of the state.

Bilas, Richard A. (OH 2004–03)

Oral History Interview with Richard Bilas. (2003). California Energy Commission, 1987–1995; California Public Utilities Commission, 1997–2002.

Richard Bilas discusses his family and early life, education, including graduate school and Fulbright Fellowship, his interest in economics, and teaching at various universities. He talks about becoming Department of Economics Chair at the new CSU Bakersfield and his experiences there. He remarks on his appointment to the California Energy Commission (CEC), CEC's history and function, and other commissioners. Bilas comments on environmental organizations, energy deregulation, and emergency energy preparedness. He discusses the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC), his role within the agency, and the agency's history. He covers telecommunications issues, transportation issues, and the 2000 California energy crisis and the parties involved. He concludes with his resignation from the PUC and perspectives on his career.

Blevins, B.B. (OH 2004–09)

Oral History Interview with B.B. Blevins. (2003–2004). California Energy Commission, 1977–1995; California Department of Conservation, 1995–1997; California Environmental Protection Agency, 1997–2004; (Department of Water Resources, 2001; California Power Authority, 2002).

Blevins discusses his background and developing interests in history, archaeology and the environment. He talks of his first job in the energy field and of moving to California and taking a position with the California Energy Commission (CEC). He comments on petroleum supply in the late 1970s, Energy Commissioners––particularly Charles Imbrecht as Chair, energy planning and conservation, and the background to California's energy deregulation. He talks about his positions with the Department of Conservation and California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA), and the organization and roles of those agencies. He comments on his interaction with Governor Pete Wilson, problems with electricity deregulation, and the creation of the California Power Authority. He also reflects on state agencies involved with the environment and with resource management.

Bouche, Brieuc (OH 93–11)

Oral History Interview with Brieuc Bouche. (1993). Master Wood Carver, High School Teacher at Manzanar Relocation Center, 1942–1943.

Bouche discusses his background and early life in France, learning wood carving, and immigrating to America. He talks about becoming an American citizen and his experiences while teaching at the Manzanar Relocation Center. He discusses the treatment and living conditions of Japanese Americans during World War II at Manzanar.

Brainin, David (OH 90–16)

Oral History with David Brainin (PDF) (1988). Revenue Estimator, California Dept. of Finance, 1950–1985.

Brainin discusses budgets and tax programs of Governors Edmund G. Brown, Sr., Edmund G. Brown, Jr., Ronald Reagan, and George Deukmejian; federal tax reform, income tax withholding, revenue sharing, property tax reform and related issues; references to key finance department staff and legislative leaders of the period.

Britschgi, Carl A. (OH 89–28)

Oral History Interview with Carl A. Britschgi (PDF) (1988). Assembly Member, 1957–1970.

This interview discusses politics in San Mateo County and Redwood City, as well as the state legislature. It covers campaigning, Education Committee, Ways and Means Committee, reapportionment, speakership, Britschgi's duties as Republican Whip, and the Legislative Representation Committee. He discusses Luther Lincoln, Ralph Brown, Jesse Unruh, Goodwin Knight, Edmund G. Brown, Sr., and Ronald Reagan.

Broaders, Halden C. (OH 92–1)

Oral History Interview with Halden C. Broaders. (1990). California Legislative Representative, 1957–1990.

Broaders talks about the 1949 consolidation of judicial district courts and about local justice in Tulare County (1950–1959). As lobbyist for Bank of America he discusses legislative reform and its impact on lobbying, regulation of banking institutions, five California governorships, and five speakerships.

Bronson, Leisa G. (OH 90–3)

Oral History Interview with Leisa G. Bronson (PDF) (1989). Democratic National Committeewoman, Democratic State Central Committee, Democratic Party Politics.

Bronson relates her family and educational background and her activities in Ohio with the YWCA, as state public affairs chairman, and the League of Women Voters, in which she was active re child labor laws. She discusses her entry into party politics in California, her service as state vice chairman, her entry into Democratic politics in Arizona, and her service as Democratic National Committeewoman from that state. She reports on the three national conventions she attended––1952, 1956, 1960.

Bronzan, Bruce (OH 96–3)

Oral History Interview with Bruce Bronzan. (1995). Fresno County Supervisor, 1975–1981. Assembly Member, 1982–1992.

Bronzan discusses his activity on the Fresno County Board of Supervisors and his interest in public health care. He covers county and state election campaigns as well as key issues of his legislative service: health and mental health, family preservation, children's services, and agriculture.

Burby, John F. (OH 88–4)

Oral History Interview with John F. Burby (PDF) (1987). Governor's Press Secretary, 1961–1967.

Burby discusses his family background, education, World War II military experience, career in journalism, service as press secretary from 1961 to 1967 in the administration of Governor Edmund G. Brown, Sr., and significant events and issues that impacted the Brown administration in that period, and comments on state and local politics in general in Sacramento.

Burgener, Clair W. (OH 93–7)

Oral History Interview with Clair W. Burgener (PDF) (1990). Assembly Member, 1963–1967; Senator, 1967–1973; U.S. Representative, 1973–1983.

Burgener outlines his experiences in California state politics, government, and legislation from the assembly and senate viewpoints. He tells of his relationship with Speaker Jesse Unruh and his committee assignments while in the assembly. He speaks of the transition to the state assembly and the effects of reapportionment. He focuses on his campaign for U.S. Senate, his activities in Congress, and his relationships with presidents, governors, and colleagues. He also discusses his work with mentally retarded children and his other legislative interests.

Burton, John L. (OH 88–15)

Oral History Interview with John L. Burton. (1987). Assembly Member, 1965–1974.

Burton discusses leadership and politics, Rules Committee, social welfare benefits; observations on Phillip Burton, Jesse Unruh, Robert Monagan, other political figures.

Busch, Burt W. (OH 88–16)

Oral History Interview with Burt W. Busch (PDF) (1988). Senator, 1947–1955.

Busch discusses activities of the Senate Interim Judiciary Committee, legislative leaders, earlier service as Lake County District Attorney (1930–1946); water, transportation, and other issues in northern California, 1920–1980.

Byrne, Jerome (OH 94–9)

Oral History Interview with Jerome C. Byrne (PDF) (1993). Special Counsel, Special Forbes Committee, Board of Regents of the University of California, 1965.

Byrne relates information about his early life in Michigan, education in Michigan and at Harvard Law School, and professional career with Gibson, Dunn, and Crutcher. He details the work of the University of California Board of Regents' Special Forbes Committee under his direct supervision as special counsel. The campus free speech controversy and assessment of students in the 1960s figures prominently in Byrne's discussion. Byrne also talks about his association with several voluntary and professional associations and his role in the John F. Kennedy presidential primary campaign in California.

Summaries and Subject Index

Interview summaries are arranged alphabetically by surname. Clicking on the letter will take you to the surname page. If a transcript of an interview is available, the summary will have a link to a downloadable PDF file.

-A- -B- -C- -D- -E- -F- -G- -H- -I- -J- -K- -L- -M- -N- -O- -P- -Q- -R- -S- -T- -U- -V- -W- -X- -Y- -Z-

Subject list uses Library of Congress subject headings.

Subject list