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Finding aid to the Patti Roberts Papers 1968-2009 (bulk 1971-2004) GLC 111
GLC 111  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Preferred Citation
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Scope and Contents
  • Arrangement

  • Title: Patti Roberts Papers
    Date (inclusive): 1968-2009 (bulk 1971-2004)
    Date (bulk): 1971-2004
    Identifier/Call Number: GLC 111
    Creator: Roberts, Patti R.
    Physical Description: 8 cartons, 1 oversized framed certificate, 2 map folders (8 cubic feet)
    Contributing Institution: James C. Hormel LGBTQIA Center, San Francisco Public Library
    100 Larkin Street
    San Francisco, CA 94102
    415-557-4567
    info@sfpl.org
    Abstract: Patricia (Patti) Rose Roberts was a longtime San Francisco Bay Area resident and civil rights and labor attorney. The papers document her interest in prison reform, George Jackson and Stephen Bingham, comparable worth and pay equity for women, gay and lesbian issues in the workplace, and employment discrimination. The collection contains subject files, photographs, books and magazines, and posters and ephemera.
    Physical Location: The collection is stored onsite.
    Language of Material: The majority of the materials are in English with some items in Spanish.

    Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is available for use during San Francisco History Center hours, with photographs available during Photo Desk hours.

    Conditions Governing Use

    Copyright and literary rights retained by the Estate of Patti Roberts.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Patti Roberts Papers (GLC 111), LGBTQIA Center, San Francisco Public Library.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Donated by Patti R. Roberts, September 24, 2008. Papers transferred by Margit Galanter, August 17, 2011.

    Biographical / Historical

    Patricia (Patti) Rose Roberts was a longtime San Francisco Bay Area resident, an out lesbian, and a civil rights and labor attorney. She was born in Far Rockaway, Queens, New York, on November 13, 1946. She graduated from Brooklyn College in 1967 and went to the University of California at Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law. She graduated from Boalt in 1970 with a J.D. degree and a desire to use her legal skills to help those traditionally without representation. That same year, she formed a collective Oakland household where she and others, including Stephen Bingham, lived. While others moved out, Ms. Roberts lived in the home for the next 41 years.
    Roberts began her career working on behalf of prisoners at the National Lawyers Guild (NLG), and remained active with the organization, serving as president of the Bay Area chapter and on the local NLG board. While continuing to do political work with the guild, Roberts began work as the head of the Women's Litigation Unit at San Francisco Neighborhood Legal Aid, representing poor women on a wide range of legal issues. Following her time at Legal Aid, Ms. Roberts founded and co-directed the Comparable Worth Project in Oakland, which pioneered much of the earliest legal work on the issue of pay inequity rooted in gender and race bias.
    In 1977, Patti became a founding board member of the Lesbian Rights Project, later re-named the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and later served as NCLR interim executive director. NCLR is a nonprofit organization that was created to promote LGBT rights through litigation, public policy advocacy and public education.
    Roberts began private practice as an employment discrimination attorney in 1990 and also taught LGBT, legal, and labor studies at City College of San Francisco and San Francisco State University Extension. As a lawyer, her practice gravitated toward the defense of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights as well as women's and minority rights in the Bay Area. During her entire career, Roberts remained an outspoken advocate for feminist and LGBT rights. Patti Roberts died unexpectedly on January 7, 2011.

    Scope and Contents

    The papers document Roberts' interest in prison reform, George Jackson and Stephen Bingham, comparable worth and pay equity for women, gay and lesbian issues in the workplace, and employment discrimination. The collection contains subject files, photographs, books and magazines, and posters and ephemera. There are files on her speaking engagements with notes and speeches. There are course readers and syllabi for the classes Roberts taught on the law and labor, employment, and gay and lesbian issues through San Francisco State University Extended Education, and City College of San Francisco. There are some materials on the East Bay Lesbian / Gay Democratic Club and the National Center for Lesbian Rights. There are many pamphlets and books, including several publications by the National Lawyers Guild on gay rights and women's rights, some Soledad materials, and Weather Underground publications.

    Arrangement

    The collection is roughly grouped into four series: Subject Files; Photographs; Books and Magazines; Posters and Ephemera.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Domestic partner benefits -- Law and legislation -- United States.
    Equal pay for equal work -- Law and legislation -- United States
    Gay men -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States.
    Gay men -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States.
    Gay rights -- United States.
    Lesbians -- Legal status, laws, etc.
    Sex discrimination in employment -- Law and legislation -- United States
    Women -- Employment -- Law and legislation -- United States
    Roberts, Patti R. -- Archives
    East Bay Lesbian and Gay Democratic Club.
    National Lawyers Guild.