Biography / Administrative History
Scope and Content of Collection
Title: No on Knight Initiative Campaign Records
Collection number: 2000-18
No on Knight Initiative Campaign Records
8 cubic feet
18 boxes and 2 map folders
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society
San Francisco, California 94105
Abstract: This collection comprises the planning, administrative, and fundraising records created from the "No on Knight" initiative
Photographs, audio-visual materials, and oversized items, such as banners and posters, are also included in this collection.
The Knight Initiative
or California's Proposition 22 (2000) sought to change the California definition of marriage by adding the phrase "Only a
marriage between a man
and a woman shall be valid or recognized." That proposal clearly outlawed same-sex marriages. The "No on Knight" initiative
campaign was promptly
organized by gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender political activists in an attempt to defeat Prop 22.
Physical location: Stored at the Archives of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society in San Francisco, California
Languages represented in the collection:
Collection open for research.
Copyright to unpublished manuscript materials has been transferred to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.
No on Knight Initiative Campaign Records, 2000-18, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Historical Society.
Records of the No on Knight Campaign were placed with GLBTHS by Manager Mike Marshall and his Assistant Toni Broaddus.
This collection of records was arranged and described over several weeks in late 2000 and early 2001. As records were not
arranged in any discernable system, the collection was organized primarily by function. Original folder labels were used when
Discarded were duplicate materials, office supplies, 3 ring notebooks and binders, and plastic covers. Coated paper faxes
were photocopied and discarded. Final arrangement and descriptive guide were read, and corrected when necessary, by Toni Broadus
and Mike Marshall.
Removed From Collection
A variety of materials has been segregated from the paper records and stored with similar material from other sources. Among
these are Artifacts, Photographs, Audio and Videotapes, and digital records in the form of CDs or 3 2 inch Computer Disks.
Oversize flat material, such as signs and posters, are stored in map folders or rolled.
Biography / Administrative History
In late 1998, California State Senator Pete Knight (Republican - Elk Grove) announced a new Initiative, dubbed the ?Definition
of Marriage?, which sought to change California law by adding the phrase ?Only a marriage between a man and a woman shall
be valid or recognized.? This proposal clearly outlawed both same-sex marriage and the recognition of such marriages performed
in other jurisdictions.
Politically-oriented GLBT activists quickly began scrambling to put together a campaign to defeat this initiative.
By late spring, Mike Marshall was hired as Campaign Manager to lead the effort to defeat Knight. In June, positions were announced
for additional key staff. By July, an interim Volunteer Organizing Plan was in place to serve until the entire Campaign apparatus
was in place. A number of politicians made important early endorsements of the No on Knight Campaign, including U. S. Rep.
Tom Campbell (7/1/99), U. S. Senator Barbara Boxer (9/9/99), and Presidential candidates Bill Bradley and Al Gore (9/16/99).
A request for proposals for a Media Consultant was issued; the successful group was Decision Research, a group that had previously
worked on several initiative campaigns as well as for a variety of GLBT people elected to public office.
Californians for Fairness, the legal entity that conducted the Campaign, was incorporated on August 6th, 1999. Also in August,
the State Headquarters was opened in San Francisco, and President and CEO of E*Trade Group, Kathy Levinson and her partner
donated $300,000, the largest single donation made to the Campaign. By September staff had been hired and specific goals were
in place regarding fundraising, media relations, field organizing, and obtaining endorsements.
The primary target areas of the Campaign were the 15 most populated counties in the state, representing nearly 80% of the
voters. Field Staff people were hired to focus on these areas and report Campaign activities back to the Statewide Field Director
Despite a high profile and many endorsements, the Knight Initiative passed handily.
Scope and Content of Collection
The No on Knight records document how strategies were developed, how various programs were run (administration, media, fundraising,
etc.), and the creation of staff handbooks.
As there was no staff person before June of 1999, and the first Board meeting was held on August 28th, there was no ?natural
catch basin? to receive notes, minutes, or other documents during the early months of Campaign development. Just who was active
in developing the No on Knight Campaign before the Board or staff was brought in is not documented here.
A few activities or functions organized by staff are not well documented. There is a paucity of correspondence in these files.
This may be due to more frequent use of the telephone, and email messages that were read but not printed out. There are also
relatively few photographs.
Some of the more interesting files are the Field Strategies stemming from the Northern California and Southern California
Organizing Meetings (Box 6), which lay out overall goals for both regions. Financial records (Box 7) are sparse, but sufficient
to contrast with the original goals.
Another series of note are the field reports residing in boxes 6 and 7. These provide figures for how many people were registered,
recruited as volunteers, house parties organized, etc, as well as narrative accounts of the organizers? activities and plans.
Meeting minutes of the Board of Directors are also documents of primary importance.
The collection is divided into 12 series. Series 1, 2, and 10 are further subdivided by subseries.
- Series 1. Planning and Evaluation
- Subseries 1.1 Founding Documents
- Subseries 1.2 Planning Resources
- Subseries 1.3 Campaign Proposals from Consultants
- Series 2. Administration
- Subseries 2.1 Board of Directors
- Subseries 2.2 Executive Director
- Subseries 2.3 Correspondence
- Subseries 2.4 Staff and Volunteers
- Subseries 2.5 Staff Reports
- Subseries 2.6 Field Staff Reports
- Subseries 2.7 Field Volunteer Reports
- Subseries 2.8 Activities
- Subseries 2.9 Financial Records
- Subseries 2.10 Miscellany
- Subseries 2.11 Press Coverage of Campaign
- Series 3. Training
- Series 4. Promotion
- Series 5. Fundraising
- Series 6. No on Knight Campaign Allies
- Series 7. Knight Campaign and Supporters
- Series 8. Topical Files
- Series 9. Photographs
- Series 10. Audio, Video, and Digital Records
- Subseries 10.1 Audiotapes
- Subseries 10.2 Videotapes
- Subseries 10.3 Compact Disks (CDs)
- Series 11. Artifacts
- Series 12. Oversize Flat Documents and Artifacts
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in
the library's online public access catalog.
Californians for Fairness
Knight, William J. "Pete"
Decision Research Corporation
Related Collections at GLBTHS
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Committee for Contemporary Family Values (1993-3)
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Amber Hollibaugh Slides (1994-13)
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Campaign for Responsible AIDS Action (1995-26)
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Stanley Hadden Papers (1997-33)
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1981 through 1991. Included are records related to statewide organizing fighting anti-gay, AIDS-related propositions and initiatives
such as the 1986 LaRouche Initiative (Prop 64) and 1988's Prop 96 and Prop 102, attempts to require mandatory reporting of
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Steve Taravella Audiotapes (1998-5)
Twenty seven audiotapes containing interviews with various leaders in the statewide organization No on 64/Stop La Rouche of
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