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Garcetti (Gil) Papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Provenance
  • Preferred Citation
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Gil Garcetti Papers
    Date (inclusive): 1982-2000
    Bulk dates: 1992-2000
    Collection Number: mssGarcetti
    Creator: Garcetti, Gil, 1941-
    Physical Description: 47 Linear Feet (113 boxes)
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2191
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains the papers of former Los Angeles County district attorney Gil Garcetti (born 1941). The collection features records documenting Garcetti's managerial and campaign activities within the district attorney's office from 1984 to 2000. The bulk of the collection was created and accumulated during his tenure as district attorney from 1992 to 2000. These records are comprised of correspondence, budget, statistics, speeches, reports, notes, press clippings, schedules, recommendations, photographs, and audiovisual materials.
    Language of Material: The collection is entirely in English.


    Collection is open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department.
    Some personal and financial records are sealed for 75 years from date of creation.

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.


    Gift of Gil Garcetti, June 2015.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Gil Garcetti papers, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

    Biographical Note

    Gil Garcetti was the district attorney of Los Angeles County from 1992 to 2000. Garcetti had served in various prosecutorial and managerial positions during his 32-year career with the district attorney's office, from starting out as a trial deputy in 1968 to becoming the chief deputy in 1984.
    Gilbert I. Garcetti was born on August 5, 1941 in Los Angeles. Garcetti received his bachelor's degree in management from University of Southern California's School of Business and his J.D. degree from UCLA Law School in 1967. While in university, Garcetti married Sukey Roth. They have two children, Dana and Eric Garcetti. During the 1968 presidential campaign, Garcetti was the Southern California campaign manager for the Democratic Party's candidate Eugene McCarthy. That same year, Garcetti was hired as a trial deputy at the district attorney's office. In 1972, Garcetti helped create the Consumer Protection Division, which was the country's first prosecutorial division focused on protecting the environment and rights of consumers. In 1977, Garcetti became the head of the Special Investigations Division, which prosecuted criminal activities of elected officials and public employees. In 1983, Garcetti was appointed as head deputy in the Felony Trials Division. In 1984, after helping Ira Reiner win the district attorney's election, Garcetti was named as Reiner's chief deputy. However, in 1988, Garcetti was demoted from second-in-command to head deputy of the district attorney's Torrance branch.
    In 1992, Garcetti won the district attorney's election after Reiner had dropped out of the race. Garcetti was re-elected in 1996 after defeating John Lynch. As the chief prosecutor of the country's largest non-federal prosecutorial office, Garcetti initiated various programs and legislations intended to enhance both law enforcement and crime prevention. In 1993, Garcetti formed district attorney's Family Violence Division, which tackled domestic violence and child abuse cases, and a Hate Crimes Unit. Garcetti initiated SAFE-WAY-OUT hotline, which provided a free and accessible connection between domestic violence victims and local shelters. Garcetti emphasized crime prevention by establishing Bureau of Crime Prevention and Youth Services. In addition, he developed anti-gang programs like SAGE (Strategies Against Gang Environments) and anti-delinquency programs like Project LEAD, RESCUE, and SHORTSTOP. Furthermore, Garcetti set up units to deter white-collar crimes, such as Welfare Fraud Division and Real Estate Fraud Section. During his two terms as district attorney, Garcetti faced various scandals, which included the prosecution of O. J. Simpson and corruption within Los Angeles Police Department's Rampart Division.
    In 2000, Garcetti lost to Steve Cooley in the district attorney's election, effectively ending his 32 years of service at district attorney's office. In 2002, Garcetti was appointed as president of the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission; he was also a fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.

    Scope and Content

    The papers of former Los Angeles County district attorney Gil Garcetti (1941-) includes mainly records that document his managerial and campaign activities in the nation's largest local prosecutorial office. The bulk of the papers contain administrative files created during Garcetti's tenure as district attorney from 1992 to 2000. These files consist of correspondence, budget, statistics, speeches, notes, press releases, schedule and calendars, recommendations, reports, and photographs. Many of these documents reflect Garcetti's focus on prosecution of domestic violence, fraud, gang violence, and child-support violations, as well as on crime prevention initiatives, such as Strategy Against Gang Environments program (SAGE) and SAFE WAY OUT family violence hotline. Another significant part of the Garcetti papers is his campaign files from the Los Angeles County district attorney elections in 1992, 1996, and 2000, which include bills, research, polls, debate notes, ephemera, and press clippings. The papers also contain case files, DDA interview notes, and reports from 1984 to 1991, during which Garcetti served as district attorney Ira Reiner's chief deputy and subsequently head deputy of the Torrance branch. The rest of the papers include audiovisual materials, awards, and memorabilia.
    Series I consists of documents created and collected during Garcetti's tenure as Los Angeles County district attorney. They include bills, correspondence, notebooks, schedules, legislative reports, press clippings, speeches, and statistics.
    Series II contains records related to Garcetti's campaigns during the 1992, 1996, and 2000 district attorney's elections. They include press clippings, ephemera, fundraising plans, polls, debate preparations, audiovisual materials, and electronic resources.
    Series III consists of mainly notebooks created during Garcetti's time as chief deputy district attorney from 1984 to 1988 and as head deputy of the Torrance branch from 1988 to 1992.
    Series IV consists of videocassettes created and collected during Garcetti's tenure as district attorney. Some topics include campaign advertisements, press conferences, interviews, and news coverage. The videocassettes are unavailable until they have been reformatted.
    Series V is comprised of personal files, awards, and memorabilia.


    The collection is arranged in five series:
    • Series I. District Attorney files
    • Series II. Campaign files
    • Series III: Chief Deputy District Attorney files
    • Series IV: Audiovisual materials
    • Series V: Personal files

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  
    California. District Attorney (Los Angeles County)
    County government -- California -- Los Angeles County -- Officials and employees
    Garcetti, Gil, 1941-
    Los Angeles County (Calif.) -- Crime -- 20th century
    Los Angeles County (Calif.) -- History -- 20th century
    Los Angeles County (Calif.) -- Politics and Government -- 20th century
    Political campaigns -- United States -- Case studies
    Public prosecutors -- California -- Los Angeles County -- 20th century