Brathwaite Burke, Yvonne

Former member of Congress, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the Board of Regents of the University of California, and of the California State Assembly.





Field Value
ID 98
Title An oral history with Yvonne Brathwaite Burke
Date 2017-06-19
OH ID OH 5977
Citation Yvonne Brathwaite Burke interviewed by Natalie Fousekis, June 19, 2017, Santa Monica, California, Oral History #5977, transcript, Women Politics, and Activism Since Suffrage, Center for Oral and Public History, California State University, Fullerton.
Restricted false
Created At 2018-03-23 22:16:39 UTC
Location Los Angeles, CA
Language English
Subjects Family → Childhood Experiences
Locations → Los Angeles, California
Discrimination, Racism, & Segregation
Education → Early Childhood Education
Family → Parents → activist parents
Colleges → University of California Berkeley
Education → Higher Education
Women in the Workplace → Higher Education
Colleges → University of Southern California (USC)
African American → Events → Civil Rights Movement (1960s)
African American → People → Martin Luther King, Jr.
Police and Law Enforcement → Police Department → Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD)
Historic Events → Watts Riots, 1965
Historic Events → Watts Riots, 1965 → McCone Commission
Elections → Campaigning
Sexism → Sexism in Politics
Elected Officials → California State Legislature → California State Assembly
Family → Child Care
Democratic Party
African American → Electeds / Appointed Officials
Family → Parenting → Motherhood
African American → People → Shirley Chisholm
Elected Officials → Board of Supervisors
Elected Officials → Board of Supervisors → Gloria Molina
Leadership → Female versus Male Leadership
Women in Politics → importance of women's involvement
Women in Politics
African American → Organizations → Black Caucus
African American → Electeds / Appointed Officials → Barbara Jordan
People → George Deukmejian
Education → UC Board of Regents
Elected Officials → Board of Supervisors → Kenny Hahn
African American → Electeds / Appointed Officials → Diane Watson
Elected Officials → Congressional → U.S. House of Representatives → Diane Watson


An oral history interview with Yvonne Brathwaite Burke, former member of Congress, former member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, former member of the Board of Regents of the University of California, and former member of the California State Assembly. This interview was conducted for the Women, Politics, and Activism Since Suffrage Project. Specifically, this interview discusses Burke’s childhood and schooling in Central Los Angeles; early messages about race; the positive role-modeling of her parents; college years at Berkeley, UCLA, and USC Law School; her involvement in the Civil Rights Movement (including a chilling memory about Dr. King); early days practicing law; Watts Riots and the McCone Commission; decision to run for State Assembly; her time in Sacramento, being one of three women, and serving with March Fong Eu; decision to run for Congress in 1972; contentions over the Vietnam War; the culture of women in Congress; being the first woman to have a child while serving in Congress; her priorities while serving in Congress; chairing the Black Caucus; mentions Bella Abzug; decision against congressional reelection instead to run for Attorney General of California (lost to George Deukmejian); appointment by Governor Brown to the Board of Regents; practicing law during intervening years; decision to run for Board of Supervisors and serving a subsequent sixteen-year term; the crisis of King/Drew Hospital; working with Gloria Molina; leadership style; differences between men and women; women’s roles in politics; and finally, proudest accomplishments.


Field Value
File Name 5977_P05.jpg
Content Type image/jpeg
Size 1147901
Description> Yvonne Brathwaite Burke, 2017.
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File Name 5977_P04.jpg
Content Type image/jpeg
Size 3700183
Description> Yvonne Brathwaite Burke with interviewer, Natalie Fousekis, 2017.
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File Name 5977_P03.jpg
Content Type image/jpeg
Size 658774
Description> Yvonne Brathwaite Burke during her oral history interview, 2017.