Holtzman, Elizabeth, 1941-

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Elizabeth Holtzman (born August 11, 1941) is an American attorney and politician who served as a member of the United States House of Representatives. A Democrat, she represented New York's 16th congressional district for four terms from 1973 to 1981. After leaving Congress, she became the first woman to serve as District Attorney of Kings County (1982-1989) and the first woman to hold the office of New York City Comptroller (1990-1993).

A native of Brookly, New York, she graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School there before earning degrees from Radcliffe College of Harvard University and Harvard Law School, one of only 15 women in a class of nearly 500 men at the latter. While at Harvard Law, she was a member of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), assisted in creating the Law Students' Civil Rights Research Council, taught English at Harvard College, and was a law clerk for civil rights attorney C. B. King.

In 1965, Holtzman joined the New York City law firm of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, and she was admitted to the bar in 1966. From 1967 to 1970, Holtzman served on the staff of Mayor John V. Lindsay, and worked as a liaison between the Mayor's office and the city Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs. From 1970 to 1972, she was a member of the New York State Democratic Committee and Democratic Committee leader for the New York State Assembly district that included her residence, and she was a delegate to the 1972 Democratic National Convention. She was also a founder of the Brooklyn Women's Political Caucus.

In 1972 Holtzman mounted a long-shot campaign to unseat incumbent Congressman Emanuel Celler, who had represented central Brooklyn for half a century and was chairman of the powerful House Judiciary Committee. Though she lacked the funding that Celler mustered for the Democratic primary, Holtzman mounted an energetic grassroots campaign by canvassing the urban district. Playing up Celler's opposition to womens' rights and his support of the War in Vietnam, Holtzman won the nomination by a narrow margin of 635 votes. In her subsequent three re-election bids, Holtzman never was seriously challenged, winning with margins of 70 percent or more. During her four terms in the House, Holtzman earned national prominence as an active member of the Judiciary Committee during the President Richard M. Nixon impeachment inquiry and as a cofounder of the Congressional Caucus on Women’s Issues.

In 1980, rather than seek re-election for a fifth term in the House, Holtzman entered the Democratic primary for nomination to the Senate, winning by a nine-point margin to become the first woman nominated for a Senate seat in New York's history. Facing Republican nominee Alfonse D'Amato and incumbent Jacob Javits, running as the candidate of the Liberal Party, Holtzman lost the election by a margin of one percent. A year after the loss of the Senate seat, Holtzman was elected district attorney of Brooklyn and served in that office until she was elected comptroller of New York City in 1989. In 1992, she unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for the Senate. Losing her bid for the Democratic nomination for city comptroller in 1993, Holtzman entered private law practice in New York City and published her memoirs in 1996.

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Project Files Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
creatorOf Holtzman, Elizabeth. Papers, 1970-1981 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Staff Secretary. 1976 - 1981. Presidential Files. 1977 - 1981. 9/18/80 [1] Jimmy Carter Library
creatorOf Holtzman, Elizabeth. Transcript of oral history, 1973. Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Legal Case Files Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn Seaman, Barbara. Papers, 1920-1983 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn National Organization for Women. Records: Series I-XVI, 1961-1999 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Guide to the Daily Worker and Daily World Photographs Collection, 1920-2001 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Records, (inclusive), (bulk), 1959-2002, 1966-1998 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Printed Materials Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn Focus on Women. [Show nos. 1-438]. [videorecording] / Produced in the studios of Cox Cable New York. Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Andreĭ Sakharov papers, 1852-2002 (inclusive), 1960-1990 (bulk). Houghton Library
creatorOf New York (N.Y.). Mayor (1960-1973 : Lindsay). Assistant (Holtzman). Economic development administration files, 1967-1970. Municipal Reference & Res Center/Doris
referencedIn Papers, 1922-1987 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Holtzman, Elizabeth. [Videotape collection] [videorecording]. Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Organizational Matters Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn Focus on Women. Videotapes, 1983-1993 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Additional papers of Betty Friedan, 1941-2006 (inclusive), 1980-2000 (bulk) Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Candidates for public office campaign materials, 1966-1976 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Photographs, ca. 1969-1985 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn New York Times Company records. A.M. Rosenthal papers, 1955-1994, 1967-1986 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
referencedIn Briefs, 1928-1976 Harvard Law School Library Langdell Hall Cambridge, MA 02138
creatorOf Holtzman, Elizabeth. An evening with Elizabeth Holtzman [sound recording] / Elizabeth Holtzman. Sarah Lawrence College, Esther Raushenbush Library
referencedIn New Democratic Coalition of New York. Records, 1960-1978. Rutgers University
creatorOf Holtzman, Elizabeth. Elizabeth Holtzman : commercials , 1980. University of Oklahoma, Political Community Archives
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Audiovisual Materials Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
referencedIn Henry, Diana Mara. Photographs, 1969-1976 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Harvard Law School Forums Records Harvard Law School Library Langdell Hall Cambridge, MA 02138
referencedIn American Civil Liberties Union Records: Subgroup 2, Subject Files Series, 1947-1995 Princeton University. Library. Dept. of Rare Books and Special Collections.Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library. Public Policy Papers.
creatorOf New York (N.Y.). Mayor (1966-1973 : Lindsay). Assistant (Holtzman). General files, 1967-1969. Municipal Reference & Res Center/Doris
referencedIn Rodgers, Dorothy F., 1909-. Papers, 1922-1987 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Friedan, Betty, 1921-2006. Papers, 1933-1985 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Records of the Women's Equity Action League, 1966-1979 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Papers, 1920(?), 1935-1983 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Abrams, Robert, 1938- person
associatedWith American Civil Liberties Union. corporateBody
associatedWith Baca, Eddie. person
associatedWith Barbara (Rosner) Seaman, 1935- person
associatedWith Betty Friedan person
correspondedWith Betty Friedan person
associatedWith Brooklyn Women's Political Caucus. corporateBody
associatedWith Communist Party of the United States of America. corporateBody
associatedWith Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues. corporateBody
associatedWith Dorothy (Feiner) Rodgers, 1909- person
associatedWith Ferraro, Geraldine. person
associatedWith Ford, Gerald R., 1913-2006 person
associatedWith Goodman, Ellen. person
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Harvard Law School corporateBody
correspondedWith Harvard Law School Forum corporateBody
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Harvard University corporateBody
associatedWith Hawkins, Yusuf. person
associatedWith Henry, Diana Mara. person
associatedWith Herman, Jeffrey. person
associatedWith Judd, Orrin G. person
subordinateOf King C. B. (Chevene Bowers), 1923-1988 person
associatedWith Kings County (N.Y.). District Attorney. corporateBody
associatedWith Lampel, David, person
associatedWith Levine, Irving. person
subordinateOf Lindsay, John V. person
associatedWith Myerson, Bess. person
associatedWith National Organization for Women. corporateBody
associatedWith New Democratic Coalition of New York. corporateBody
associatedWith New York (N.Y.). Comptroller's Office. corporateBody
associatedWith New York (N.Y.). Mayor (1960-1973 : Lindsay). Assistant (Holtzman) corporateBody
associatedWith New York (N.Y.). Mayor (1966-1973 : Lindsay). Assistant (Holtzman) corporateBody
associatedWith New York University corporateBody
employeeOf New York university. School of law corporateBody
associatedWith Nixon, Richard M. (Richard Milhous), 1913-1994. person
associatedWith Petrofsky, John. person
associatedWith Pinzler, Isabelle Katz. person
associatedWith Pressman, Gabe, person
associatedWith Radcliffe College corporateBody
associatedWith Rockefeller, Nelson A. (Nelson Aldrich), 1908-1979. person
associatedWith Rodgers, Dorothy F., 1909- person
associatedWith Rosenthal, A. M. (Abraham Michael), 1922-2006 person
correspondedWith Sakharov, Andreĭ, 1921-1989 person
associatedWith Sarah Lawrence College. corporateBody
associatedWith Schorer, Jane. person
associatedWith Seaman, Barbara. person
associatedWith Serrano, Joseph. person
associatedWith Shapiro, Marilyn. person
associatedWith Sharpton, Al. person
associatedWith Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Central Intelligence Agency. corporateBody
memberOf United States. Congress. House. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress. House. Committee on the Judiciary. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress. Senate corporateBody
associatedWith University of Oklahoma. Political Commercial Archive. corporateBody
associatedWith William E. Wiener Oral History Library. corporateBody
associatedWith Wolfe, Ken, person
associatedWith Women's Action Coalition (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
correspondedWith Women's Equity Action League corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Cambridge MA US
New York City NY US
Subject
Elections
Emigration and immigration law
Energy policy
Gay rights
Housing policy
Jews
Jews, Soviet
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Politics, Practical
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Vietnam War, 1961-1975
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Women
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Occupation
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Person

Birth 1941-08-11

Female

Americans

English

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