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Inventory of the California Commission on the Status of Women Records
R214  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Administrative History
  • Scope and Content
  • Accruals
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: California Commission on the Status of Women Records
    Dates: 1965-2010
    Collection number: R214
    Creator: Commission on the Status of Women
    Collection Size: 14 cubic feet
    Repository: California State Archives
    Sacramento, California
    Abstract: The records of the California Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) consist of fourteen cubic feet of textual, photographic, and audiovisual records reflecting the Commission's research and recommendations specifically on women's issues within the state. The records date from 1965-2010.
    Physical location: California State Archives
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

    Administrative Information

    Access

    While the majority of the records are open for research, any access restrictions are noted in the record series descriptions.

    Publication Rights

    For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the California State Archives. Permission for reproduction or publication is given on behalf of the California State Archives as the owner of the physical items. The researcher assumes all responsibility for possible infringement which may arise from reproduction or publication of materials from the California State Archives collections.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Commission on the Status of Women Records, R214.[series number], [box and folder number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.

    Acquisition and Custodial History

    The California State Archives acquired the Commission on the Status of Women Records according to state law.

    Administrative History

    The California Advisory Commission on the Status of Women was established by Chapter 1378 (Statutes of 1965), for the purpose of "developing recommendations which will enable women to make the maximum contribution to society." The recommendations of this commission were due to the Governor by June 30, 1967. The 15 members of the Advisory Commission consisted of three members of the Senate appointed by the Senate Committee on Rules, three members of the Assembly appointed by the Speaker, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Chief of the Division of Industrial Relations, and seven public members appointed by the Governor with the consent of the Senate. Chapter 854 (Statutes of 1967) extended the sunset date of the Commission through June 1969. It also increased the membership to 17 commissioners, with the Senate Rules Committee and the Speaker each appointing one public member in addition to their existing appointments. Chapter 721 (Statutes of 1969) again extended the sunset date of the Commission, this time through June 1971. The Advisory Commission (1965-1971) was authorized to conduct hearings, appoint an Advisory Committee of public members from a variety of backgrounds, encourage the development of local commissions of a similar nature, and perform research in the pursuit of their final recommendations.
    On August 11, 1971, Chapter 541 (Statutes of 1971) was signed by the Governor, making the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) a permanent agency. In addition to its existing duties, CSW was also mandated to "act as an information center on the status of women's needs" and "develop and coordinate with [those] concerned with preventing problems brought about by the changing roles of women, and [those who] develop programs to enable women to be fully contributing members of society." Chapter 1596 (Statutes of 1984) created the Displaced Homemaker Emergency Loan Act (DHELA), a pilot loan program administered by CSW until 1998 (extended by Chapter 1385, Statutes of 1985, and Chapter 488, Statutes of 1995).
    Neither the Advisory Commission nor CSW had any distinct organizational programs until 1981, when the work of CSW was divided into Research and Information Services, Legislative Liaison, and Administration. These divisions remained unchanged until 1985 when the Comparable Worth Task Force and the DHELA programs were added. In 1987, the Task Force was ended, the first three program areas were condensed into one, and DHELA was retained as a separate program. In 1999, DHELA was ended and, as of 2012, CSW remains a single multi-functional program of Administration-Legislation-Research and Information Services.
    Over the course of its lengthy history, the Commission has formed many committees, including the following: Advisory, Child Care, Child Support/Custody, Community Involvement, Criminal Justice, Education, Employment, Executive, Health, Homemaker, Marital Property, and Public Information. Notable task forces include those on Minority Women and Comparable Worth.
    Commission Chairs
    Ruth Miller, 1965-1966
    Kathleen Finucane, 1967
    Betty Concannon, 1968-1971
    Anita Miller, 1972-1978
    Betty Stephens, 1978-1980
    Irene Hirano, 1980-1982
    Hannah-Beth Jackson, 1982-1983
    Carole Ward-Allen, 1983-1984
    Dorothy Jonas, 1984-1985
    Verna Dauterive, 1986-1988
    Jan Hall, 1988-1990
    Meg Troughton, 1990-1991
    Marjorie Hansen Shaevitz, 1991-1995
    Lily Ring Balian, 1995-1997
    Cheryl D. Kendrick, 1997-1999
    Eileen Padberg, 1999-2000
    Bonnie Sloane, 2000-2001
    Elmy Bermejo, 2001-2005
    Holly Mitchell, 2006-2007
    Lindy DeKoven, 2008-2009
    Elaine Suranie, 2010-2011
    Geena Davis, 2012-present
    Executive Directors
    Marian Ash, 1965-1967
    Carolyn Heine, 1968-1974
    Pamela Faust, 1975-1982
    Lee Novick, 1982-1983
    Margaret Almada, 1984-1985
    Pat Towner, 1986-1996
    Karmi Speece, 1996-1999
    Iola Gold, 2000-2001
    Mary Wiberg, 2001-present

    Scope and Content

    The records of the California Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) consist of fourteen cubic feet of textual, photographic, and audiovisual records reflecting the Commission's research and recommendations specifically on women's issues within the state. The records date from 1965-2010. The records are organized into sixteen record series: Meeting Files, Meeting Minutes, Business Meeting Files, Transcripts, Hearing Files, Chronological Correspondence, Commission Publications, Publications, Reports to the Legislature, Newsletters, Sex Equity in Education (SEEA) Regulations Files, Staff Files, Equal Rights Amendments (ERA) Files, Laws Affecting Women, Publicity Files, and Subject Files.
    As the only state agency to exclusively focus on the needs and concerns of females of all ages and backgrounds, the Commission on the Status of Women holds a noteworthy place in the history of California. Their records reflect the diverse and complex topics that impact women in this state while chronicling the ever-changing nature of legislative attitudes surrounding those topics. Many series within the record group document the day-to-day activities of the Commission and its staff, such as the Meeting Files, Meeting Minutes, Business Meeting Files, Chronological Correspondence, Staff Files, and Subject Files. Other record series directly expose the Commission's presence in the middle of national debates and social movements to better the lives of women. These series include the Transcripts, Hearing Files, Commission Publications, Publications, Reports to the Legislature, Newsletters, the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) Files, and the Publicity Files.

    Accruals

    Further accruals are expected.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    California. Advisory Commission on the Status of Women
    California Commission on the Status of Women
    Women's rights - California