Inventory of the Leo T. McCarthy Papers, 1972-1980

Processed by The California State Archives staff.
California State Archives
1020 "O" Street
Sacramento, California 95814
Phone: (916) 653-2246
Fax: (916) 653-7363
© 2003
California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Inventory of the Leo T. McCarthy Papers, 1972-1980

Inventory: LP212:72-73, LP218:120-139

California State Archives

Office of the Secretary of State

Sacramento, California

Contact Information:

  • California State Archives
  • 1020 "O" Street
  • Sacramento, California 95814
  • Phone: (916) 653-2246
  • Fax: (916) 653-7363
  • Email:
  • URL:
Processed by: The California State Archives staff
Date Completed: 2003
Encoded by: Laura Avedisian
© 2003 California Secretary of State. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: McCarthy (Leo T.) Papers,
Date (inclusive): 1972-1980
Collection number: LP212:72-73, LP218:120-139
Creator: McCarthy, Leo T.
Extent: 1.5 cubic feet
Repository: California State Archives
Sacramento, California
Abstract: Leo T. McCarthy, Democrat, was a State Assembly Member from 1969-1982; he was Lieutenant Governor from 1983-1994. His papers include one bill file on AB1111, 1979-1980, and press and publicity files from 1972-1973 and 1975-1978.
Physical location: California State Archives
Language: English.

Administrative Information


Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the California State Archives staff. Permission for reproduction or publication is given on behalf of the California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, 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], Leo T. McCarthy Ppaers, LP[number]:[folder number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.

Acquisition Information

The California State Archives received the Leo T. McCarthy papers following his assembly terms.

Processing History

This collection was processed by California State Archives staff.


Leo T. McCarthy, Democrat, was a State Assembly Member, 1969-1982. From 1969-1974, he represented the 19th District, which included portions of San Francisco County. After redistricting in 1974, McCarthy's 18th District included portions of San Francisco and San Mateo Counties.
McCarthy was born in 1930 in Auckland, New Zealand; he moved to San Francisco with his parents in 1934. In San Francisco, he attended St. James and St. Ignatius schools, then received his B.A. in history from the University of San Francisco and his LL.B at San Francisco Law School. He is a veteran of the United States Air Force, 1951-1952. On December 17, 1955, he married Jacqueline Lee Burke. They have four children: Sharon, Conna, Adam and Niall.
Prior to serving in the State Assembly, McCarthy was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1963 and 1967. He was a member of the California Commission on Aging, 1963-1967. In 1968, he was elected for the first time to the State Assembly where he served until 1983. He was the Democratic Whip in 1971 and 1972. In 1975, he became the first Speaker elected from San Francisco since 1927. Under his leadership, the Assembly increased Democratic membership to a record level for the twentieth century. He continued serving as Speaker until 1981. He was Speaker Pro Tempore in 1981 and 1982.
According to the California Legislature at Sacramento (Handbooks), McCarthy served on the following committees:

Biography/Organization History

  • Standing Committees
  • Elections and Constitutional Amendments, 1969-1970
  • * Vice Chair, 1969
  • Finance, Insurance and Commerce, 1981
  • Labor Relations, 1972-1974
  • * Chair, 1972-1974
  • Local Government, 1969-1970
  • Policy Research Management, 1981-1982
  • Planning and Land Use, 1971-1973
  • Planning, Land Use and Energy, 1974
  • Revenue and Taxation, 1969-1974, 1981-1982
  • * Vice Chair, 1970
  • Transportation, 1971-1974
  • Ways and Means, 1981-1982
  • Welfare, 1971-1972
  • Farm Labor Violence, 1974
  • Regulatory Oversight 1981-1982
  • * Chair, 1981-1982
  • Joint Committees
  • Aging, 1973-1974
  • * Chair, 1973-1974
In 1982, McCarthy was elected Lieutenant Governor; he held this office from 1983 through 1994. As Lieutenant Governor, he also served as a University of California Regent, a State University Trustee, Chair of California's Economic Development Commission, and a member of the State Land Commission. In 1992, he lost a primary bid for U.S. Senate.
In 1995, McCarthy created an investment and consulting company, The Daniel Group, in San Francisco. He also served on several corporate and mutual fund boards. After leaving office, McCarthy has continued to be active in public affairs. He served on the National Gambling Impact Study Commission, 1997-1999 and has been vocal concerning tribal gaming in California and the negative impact of gambling on society. He has also been involved in the Leo T. McCarthy Center for Public Service and the Common Good, located at the University of San Francisco. The McCarthy Center supports both undergraduate and graduate programs in government and community service.

Scope and Content

The Leo T. McCarthy Papers consist of 1.5 cubic feet of material. The files include a bill file on AB1111, 1979-1980, and press and publicity files, 1972-1973 and 1975-1978. The bill file includes press releases, correspondence, analyses, amendments and responses to AB1111, which proposed the establishment of the Office of Administrative Law to review proposed regulations.
The press and publicity files include press releases, transcripts of press conferences, speeches, and statements that often refer to bills introduced and supported by McCarthy. These cover a wide array of subjects, including the Agricultural Labor Relations Act, coastline controls, nuclear power plant safeguards, tax reforms, a streamlining of the state agency permit review processes, and a long-term financing structure for schools and local government following the passage of Proposition 13. Throughout his career, McCarthy also emphasized legislation that addressed the problems of aging. Because of these concerns, his press releases and speeches often include summaries of bills to strengthen enforcement of age discrimination laws, nutrition programs for the elderly, nursing home inspections and reform, and the elimination of inheritance taxes for surviving spouses.

Related Collections

Leo T. McCarthy, Oral History Interview, conducted 1995 and 1996 by Carole Hicke, Regional Oral History Office, University of California Berkeley, for the California State Archives State Government Oral History Program, available at the California State Archives and other repositories.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been associated with these materials in the Archives' automated public access system (currently in development, April 2004).


McCarthy, Leo T., 1930-
California. Office of Administrative Law
Lieutenant governors

Series Descriptions


Bill File, 1979-1980

Physical Description: 2 file folders


The contents of the bill file are arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content Note

The bill file created by Leo T. McCarthy includes bill analyses, amendments, conflict statements, correspondence, position statements, author's statements, press releases, newspaper clippings, background information, and reports for AB 1111, 1979-1980, which established the Office of Administrative Law. This is the only bill file transferred by McCarthy to the California State Archives.
1979-1980 AB1111(2ff) LP212:72-73

Press and Publicity Files, 1972-1973, 1975-1978

Physical Description: 20 file folders


Press and publicity files are arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content Note

McCarthy and his staff prepared press releases, speeches and statements to emphasize his opinions on current events, his response to legislation, and the status of bills that he sponsored.
Press Releases as Chairman, Joint Committee on Aging, 1972-1973 (1ff) LP218:120
Press Releases, 1973 (1ff) LP218:121
Press Releases, Articles, Conferences, 1975-1978 (8ff) LP218:122-129
Speeches, 1975-1978 (9ff) LP218:130-138
Statements, 1975-1978 (1ff) LP218:139