Guide to the Herschel Rosenthal Papers

California State Archives
1020 "O" Street
Sacramento, California 95814
Phone: (916) 653-2246
Fax: (916) 653-7363
© 2014
California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Herschel Rosenthal Papers

Collection number:LP220:80-133, LP443

California State Archives

Office of the Secretary of State

Sacramento, California
Processed by:
Alicia Castaneda and Archives Staff
Date Completed:
January 2012
Encoded by:
Lisa C. Prince
© 2014 California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Guide to the Herschel Rosenthal Papers
Dates: 1975-1998
Collection number: LP220:80-133, LP443
Creator: Rosenthal, Herschel
Collection Size: 18 cubic feet of textual records and 14 artifacts
Repository: California State Archives
Sacramento, California
Abstract: The Herschel Rosenthal Papers consist of 18 cubic feet of textual records and 14 artifacts and cover the years 1975 to 1998. The records are organized into the following record series: Bill Files, 1975-1998; Bill Records, 1975-1998; and Artifacts, 1975-1998.
Physical location: California State Archives
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Administrative Information


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], Herschel Rosenthal Papers, LP[number]:[folder number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.

Agency History

Herschel Rosenthal, Democrat, served California as a State Assembly Member from 1975 through 1982 and as a State Senator from 1983 through 1998. He represented the 45th Assembly District, which included the Los Angeles communities of Beverly-Fairfax, Miracle Mile, Hollywood, West Hollywood, Hancock Park, Hollywood Hills, parts of North Hollywood, and Studio City. In 1982, he won election as State Senator to represent the 22nd Senatorial District. Rosenthal was endorsed by every major Democratic incumbent in the state. Subsequently, he took office as a member of the Legislature's upper house on December 6, 1982, where he served until 1998. His 22nd Senatorial District included the cities of Encino, Sherman Oaks, Beverly Hills, Pacific Palisades, West Los Angeles, Culver City, Santa Monica, Westwood, Tarzana, and Woodland Hills. After redistricting in 1991, Rosenthal's 20th Senatorial District included Canoga Park, East Los Angeles, North Hollywood, San Fernando, Van Nuys, Pacoima, Reseda, Panorama City, Sepulveda, and Sylmar.
Herschel Rosenthal was born on March 13, 1918, in St. Louis, Missouri. His father worked as a pattern cutter in the garment industry, and his mother was a homemaker. Herschel established residency in California in 1929 and lived in the Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles. He attended UCLA where he studied at their School of Engineering. During World War II, he served in the Navy. Then, in 1946, he married Patricia (Staman) Rosenthal, with whom he had two children, a son, Joel Rosenthal, and a daughter, Suzanne Hellerstein. The Rosenthal's marriage lasted over 62 years until Herschel's death in 2009.
Rosenthal was very active in the Jewish Centers movement. He was President of the Westside Jewish Community Center, Vice President of the Jewish Centers Association, President of the American Jewish Congress, President of the National Association of Jewish Legislators, and was a member of the American Jewish Committee as well as the Jewish Community Alliance. He also served as Commissioner for the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency and was a member of the American Civil Liberties Union, Americans with Disabilities Association, California Delegation to Democratic National Convention, Common Cause, International Typographical Union No. 174, the Los Angeles County Democratic Central Committee, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
Herschel Rosenthal died on June 19, 2009, at a nursing home in Hollywood, California shortly after being treated for a case of pneumonia.
During his term in the California Legislature, Rosenthal served on the following committees according to the California Legislature at Sacramento (Handbooks) and the California Blue Book
Assembly Standing Committees
Aging, 1979-1981
Energy and Natural Resources, 1981-1982
Governmental Organization, 1975-1982
Vice Chair, 1975-1976
Health, 1975-1982
Labor and Employment, 1981-1982
Rules, 1977-1982
Ways and Means, 1977-1978
Assembly Subcommittees
Health Care Investigations, 1977-1978
Health Personnel, 1977-1982
Joint Rules, 1977-1982
Land Use, 1977-1978
Mental Health and Development Disabilities, 1975-1976
Motion Picture Development, 1975-1982
Social Benefits and Services Advisory Board, 1977-1982
Assembly Select Committees
Economic Problems in Timber and Related Industries, 1979-1982
Genetic Diseases, 1977-1982
Chairman 1979-1980
Health Sciences Education, 1975-1976
Landslide Prevention, 1979-1980
Assembly Special Subcommittees
Healthcare Investigations, 1975-1976
Medi-Cal Reform, 1979-1980
Senate Standing Committees
Business and Professions, 1983-1998
Elections and Reapportionment, 1987-1998
Energy and Public Utilities, 1983-1994
Chairman 1983-1992
Energy, Utilities and Communications, 1995-1998
Governmental Organization, 1983-1998
Health and Human Services, 1983-1994
Industrial Relations, 1983-1998
Insurance, 1993-1998
Chairman 1997-1998
Insurance Reform, 1993-1994
Local Government, 1995-1996
Natural Resources and Wildlife, 1991-1992
Revenue and Taxation, 1991-1992
Toxics and Public Safety Management, 1987-1990
Senate Select Committees
California Quincentennial, 1991-1992
Developmental Disabilities and Mental Health, 1997-1998
Entertainment Industry, 1997-1998
Healthcare Delivery Systems 1987-1988
Horseracing, 1997-1998
Insurance Reform, 1993-1994
Motion Picture, Television, Commercial, and Recording Industries 1983-1988
Chairman, 1983-1990
Northridge Earthquake 1995-1996
Chairman 1995-1996
Women in the Workforce 1987-1998
Senate Subcommittees
Bioethics, 1987-1994
Cable Television, 1983-1988
CEQA, 1995-1996
Diseases, 1983-1984
Energy Costs and Industrial Development, 1985-1990
Healthcare Cost Management, 1983-1992
Health and Human Services, 1990-1991
Healthcare Reform, 1995-1998
Chairman, 1995-1996
Horseracing, 1991-1998
Mental Health, 1983-1984
Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Genetic Diseases, 1985-1994
Nuclear Facility Safety, 1985-1986
Prescription Drugs, 1993-1998
Women in the Workforce, 1983-1990
Senate Special Committees
Developmental Disabilities and Mental Health, 1991-1996
Greenhouse Effect, Ozone Depletion, and Atmospheric Pollution, 1989-1990
Senate Joint Committees
1992 California Quincentennial of the Voyages of Christopher Columbus, 1989-1992
Energy Regulation and the Environment, 1989-1990
GAIN Implementation, 1987-1990
Lowering the Cost of Electric Services, 1995-1998
Workers Compensation, 1983-1984, 1997-1998

Scope and Content

The Herschel Rosenthal Papers consist of 18 cubic feet of textual records and 14 artifacts and cover the years 1975 to 1998. The records are organized into the following record series: Bill Files, 1975-1998; Bill Records, 1975-1998; and Artifacts, 1975-1998.
The Bill Files document his legislative activity during his term as a member of the California State Legislature. The Bill Records provide a summary of the bills introduced by Rosenthal during each legislative session. The bills introduced by Herschel Rosenthal pertain to a wide array of subjects including public utilities, health, horseracing, and the environment.
He played a major role in passing legislation to protect the Santa Monica Mountains (SB1323 (1989-1990) and was a leader in the efforts to create more locally based film industry jobs by encouraging California-based production (SB2293, SB2294, SB2295, SJR26 all from the 1985-1986 session). A strong supporter of Israel, two particularly intriguing bills in this collection are SJR54 as well as SJR 58. SJR54 concerned the release of Dr. Yosef Begun from his exile in Siberia, while persuading the government of theSoviet Union to permit his emigration to Israel. SJR 50 requested that the President and Congress support and ratify the Genocide Convention.


No 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.
Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy
California Legislature Senate

Series Description

LP220:80-133, LP433:1-265

Series 1 Bill Files 1975-1998

Physical Description: 319 file folders


Bill Files are arranged chronologically by legislative session, then numerically by bill number.

Scope and Content Note

Bill Files were created by Herschel Rosenthal while he served as a state legislator from 1975-1998. The bill files may include bill analyses, amendments and resolutions, author's statements, testimony, press releases, newspaper clippings, correspondence, and committee statements. The bill files include amendments, analyses, letters and position statements in support of opposition, Legislative Counsel opinions and conflict letters, author's floor and committee statements and press releases, newspaper clipping, background information, and other documents regarding implementation.
The bills introduced by Rosenthal concerned a wide array of subjects. He authored bills concerning public utilities (SB799, SB845, SB909, from the 1995-1996 session); health (AB154, AB194, AB534, from the 1981-1982 session); horseracing (SB2405, SB2430, and SB2450 from the 1985-1986 session); and the environment (SB2143, SB2297, and SB2547 from the 1987-1988 session).
1975-1976 (4ff), AB233-AB4431, ACA106, ACR209, ACR220, HR29-HR60 LP220:80-83
1977-1978 (12ff), AB18-AB3721, AJR13, AJR83, HR26, HR58 LP220:84-95
1979-1980 (17ff), AB16-AB3482, ACR23-ACR144, AJR33, AJR71, HR28 LP220:96-112
1981-1982 (21ff). AB153-AB3806, ACR18-ACR133, AJR23, AJR102, HR24, HR38 LP220:113-133
1983-1984 (37ff), SB113-SB2303, SCA14, SCR28-SCR82, SJR26-SJR58,SR32, SB18X LP433:1-37
1985-1986 (51ff), SB47-SB2585, SCR8-SCR100, SJR9-SJR66 LP433:38-88
1987-1988 (47ff), SB37-SB2752, SCA38, SCR54-SCR83, SJR3-SJR41, SR7 LP433:89-135
1989-1990 (45ff), SB52-SB2869, SCR7-SCR77, SJR16, SR30-SR73 LP433:136-180
1991-1992 (17ff), SB178-SB2041, SCR23-SCR28 LP433:181-195
1993-1994 (22ff), SB166-SB1983, SJR46 LP433:198-219
1995-1996 (16ff), SB36-SB2045 LP443:220-235
1997-1998 (30ff), SB219-SB2102, SCR37 LP443:236-265

Series 2 Bill Records 1975-1998

Physical Description: 12 file folders


Arranged chronologically by legislative session.

Scope and Content Note

Bill Records provide a summary of the bills introduced by Herschel Rosenthal during each legislative session. Summaries note whether the bill was chaptered, died, or dropped.

Series 3 Artifacts 1975-1998

Physical Description: 14 artifacts


Arranged by type of artifact.

Access Information

Contact reference archivist for access to artifacts

Scope and Content Note

The collection of artifacts from the office of Herschel Rosenthal include: a plaque from the California State Assembly, framed Assembly and Senate license plates, a plaque from California Beer and Beverage Distributors, a goat statuette labeled "Herschel's Race Horse." A plaque from the California Derby Club, a paperweight from Stillwater Geothermal Plant, Arco's California's medallions (one missing), a plaque from the Association of Rural Northern California Energy Providers, a Calaveras County Frog Jump award ribbon and commemorative plaque, a certificate of appreciation from the 51st District Agricultural Association, a framed Assembly Bill 65 (1981) signed by former Governor Jerry Brown, and a plaque from the California Trial Lawyers Association.