Skip to main content
Identifier: RG 11/L1

President's Select Committee for Lesbian and Gay Concerns Records


  • 1988-1990

Scope and Content Note

The Guide to the Records of the President's Select Committee for Lesbian and Gay Concerns consists of 4 cubic ft. housed in 12 manuscript boxes. The collection is arranged into two series: the records of the committee proper and the records of the task groups. The Committee Series is divided into eight sub-series: 1. History 2. Minutes 3. General Correspondence 4. Financial 5. Reports 6. Activities: Research, Surveys 7. Media Coverage 8. Resources.

The second series, Task Groups is divided into nine subgroups corresponding to the Select Committee's nine task groups : 1. Curricula and Academic Affairs 2. Ending Homophobia 3. Special Concerns of the Camden Campus 4. Special Concerns of Lesbians 5.Special Concerns of the Newark Campus 6. Special Concerns of People of Color 7.Personnel Benefits and Services 8. Student Life and Services 9. University Publications. The inclusive dates of the Committee's Records are 1987-1989 while supplementary materials range from 1969-1990.

The collection consists of historical records documenting the climate at Rutgers University prior to the formation of the President's Select Committee 1969-1988. Documents generated by the Select Committee and Task Groups includes a chronology of meetings and events, bio-sketches of members, committee activities, official committee reports and a bulk of survey materials, including resource materials.

Committee correspondence includes departmental memos, brief financial statements and some grant and award materials. The research materials document the creation of the survey instruments and survey results, including statistical reports, original survey forms, responses, and statistics, with extensive research resources. The Media Coverage series begins with local campus coverage and extends to national media coverage. The resource materials consist of extensive research resources formed by the Committee, which include articles compiled in many related subject categories. Gay and Lesbian issues are a focal point, but the resources also include bibliographic information on gay and lesbian videos, resource centers and counseling efforts.


4.25 Cubic Feet (13 manuscript boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection consists of the correspondences, reports, minutes, and other materials related to the establishment and actions of Rutgers University President Edward J. Bloustien's select committee for lesbian and gay concerns. The collection consists of two series divided into sub-series; where noted, the sub-series are further divided according to specific materials.

<emph render="bold">Historical Overview</emph>

In the Spring of 1988, Rutgers University experienced a series of incidents of bigotry involving the gay community on campus. In response, University President Edward J. Bloustein initiated a campaign to counter the incidents. He began by writing and publishing "Towards a Pluralistic Community Free From Prejudice: A Suggested Agenda To Improve human Relations at Rutgers University" and initiated his campaign to promote respect for diversity at Rutgers. In February of 1988, President Bloustein announced the creation of a Select Committee for Lesbian and Gay Concerns. The Select Committee would be part of the University's larger commitment to combating prejudice and encouraging respect for diversity, through the Program to Advance Our Common Purposes.

President Bloustein charged the Committee to complete a series of tasks. First and foremost, he wanted them to provide a high-level, visible focus on the issue of discrimination and harassment of people on the basis of their sexual orientation. Secondly, he asked that they advise him and the University administration on how to best accomplish the full implementation of the University's policies barring discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Accordingly, the Select Committee was asked to assess the current policies and support services and make recommendations to reduce the incidents of homophobic activities on campus. Finally, they were asked to advise on the activities that would reduce prejudice and improve the over-all climate for the gay and lesbian community on campus.

The Select Committee was chaired by Dean James D. Anderson and consisted of twenty-nine members. The members included faculty, students, administrators and alumni.

At its first meeting in the Spring of 1988, the Select Committee identified nine areas of primary concern which would became the focus of nine task groups: Curriculum and Academic Affairs, Ending Homophobia, Personnel Benefits and Services, Special Concerns of Lesbians, Special Concerns of the Camden Campus, Special Concerns of the Newark Campus, Special Concerns of People of Color, Student Life and Services and University Publications.

Under the direction of Dr. Susan Cavin, the Rutgers Sexual Orientation Survey was conducted. The survey interviewed members from all facets of the Rutgers community and confirmed a homophobic atmosphere described in the report as "a vicious, sometimes violent underside to the life here at Rutgers"

The Select committee held a total of seventy-one meetings on the Camden, Newark, New Brunswick and Piscataway Campuses; the meetings included three Open Forums. In preparation for the final report, the select committee collected information in the spring of 1989 by taking surveys with students, faculty, staff members and alumnae/i. They also investigated curricula, programs and policies at other colleges and universities and engaged in extensive educational and outreach efforts.

Arrangement Note

The Guide to the Records of the President's Select Committee for Lesbian and Gay Concerns are divided into two series:

  1. Series I. Select Committee.
  2. Series II. Task Groups

Related Material

Records pertaining to the Rutgers gay, lesbian, and bisexual community are located in Special Collections and University Archives at Rutgers include:

Records of the Bisexual, Lesbian, and Gay Alliance at Rutgers University, 1965-2000

Records of the Rutgers University College of Nursing Office of the Dean, 1952-1994,

Rutgers Grass Roots - Progressive Activists Files, 1921-1993

Inventory to the Records of the President's Select Committee for Lesbian and Gay Concerns, 1988-1990 RG 11/L1
Edited Full Draft
Mary Alice Cicerale and Danielle Finnegan
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Part of the Rutgers University Archives Repository

Rutgers University Libraries
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
169 College Avenue
New Brunswick NJ 08901-1163
732-932-7012 (Fax)