Assistant Director for Consumer and Cultural Affairs
Domestic Council


Ryan's chronological file (April 1975 - March 1976) of carbon copies of outgoing letters, memoranda and other documents on her work on consumer and cultural affairs. The bulk of her files were dispersed to other Domestic Council staff members upon her departure from the White House.

0.4 linear feet (ca. 400 pages)

Gerald R. Ford (accession number 77-107)

Open. Some items are temporarily restricted under terms of the donor's deed of gift, a copy of which is available on request, or under National Archives and Records Administration general restrictions (36 CFR 1256).

Gerald Ford donated to the United States of America his copyrights in all of his unpublished writings in National Archives collections. The copyrights to materials written by other individuals or organizations are presumed to remain with them. Works prepared by U.S. Government employees as part of their official duties are in the public domain.

Prepared by Barbara White, July 1982
[s:\bin\findaid\ryan, kathleen - files.doc]


Kathleen Anne Ryan

November 6, 1948 - Born in New York City

1966-69 - B.S.F.S., Georgetown University, The School of Foreign Service, Washington, D.C.

1970 - Student, University of Madrid, Spain

1971-72 - M.A., New York University, Ibero-American Center

Jan.-Mar. 1973 - Researcher in Foreign Affairs, Office of Nelson A. Rockefeller

Mar.-Nov. 1973 - Staff Assistant to Dr. Henry Kissinger, National Security Council

Nov. 1973-Mar. 1975 - Staff Assistant to James M. Cannon, the Commission on Critical Choices for Americans

April-Dec. 1975 - Assistant Director for General Government (Science, Culture and Consumer Affairs), Domestic Council

Jan.-March 1976 - Assistant Director for Consumer and Cultural Affairs, Domestic Council

April 1976 - Married and moved to New York City


Kathleen Ryan joined the Domestic Council staff in April 1975 as Assistant Director for General Government under Associate Director Glenn Schleede. General Government included energy and science, culture and consumer affairs. Ryan emphasized the latter two and, in early 1976, her title was changed to Assistant Director for Consumer and Cultural Affairs to more accurately reflect her duties. She resigned in April 1976.

Ryan's primary responsibilities were the areas of consumer and cultural affairs, including the arts, humanities and historic preservation, while assisting Glenn Schleede with routine matters in the areas of science, energy and environmental issues. She compiled and interpreted information and advised the Domestic Council staff. She answered correspondence, made referrals, monitored legislation, commented on personnel appointments, prepared the President's Issue Book beginning in 1976, and occasionally drafted issues statements for public release.

She attended meetings, often when a White House representative was requested, including meetings concerning potential federal users of the space shuttle, the Consumer Representation Plan for federal agencies, and bicentennial planning; and coordinated other meetings and events, such as the National Science Foundation's National Medal of Science winners awards and invitations to the Apollo launching. She served as Domestic Council liaison with the National Endowment for and the National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities, the Federal Council on Historic Preservation; and on the Bicentennial. She also helped evaluate the role of the Federal Property Council and responded to all inquiries regarding the White House Conference of Library and Information Services.

In the area of consumer affairs there was substantial interest in legislation to create a Consumer Protection Agency and the administration's Consumer Representation Plan alternative. Ryan's input included evaluating the legislation and producing fact sheets, issue papers and presidential statements. She attended meetings coordinating the seventeen federal agencies involved in the administration's Consumer Representation Plan under the direction of the Office of Consumer Affairs.

Kathleen Ryan's chronological file consists mainly of carbons and copies of outgoing material documenting her Domestic Council work. It includes her log book of outgoing correspondence from October 1975 and on. The papers consist of materials to the Domestic Council staff, especially to James Cannon, concerning policy issues she was covering, meetings she attended or coordinated, and budget concerns; to other federal agency staff, often referrals and comments within her policy areas, especially personnel nominations to boards and commissions such as the National Capital Planning Commission and the Commission of Fine Arts; and to private individuals, responding to inquiries and consumer complaints. Also included are meeting agendas and guest lists, and weekly domestic activities reports. The material in this file reflects Ryan's handling routine, day-to-day matters; within these papers, consumer protection issues are covered in greatest depth. Ryan's subject files were dispersed to other Domestic Council staff upon her departure.

Related Materials (July 1982)
Kathleen Ryan's subject files were dispersed to other Domestic Council staff upon her departure. Sarah C. Massengale assumed Ryan's responsibilities for cultural affairs, including the arts and humanities and historic preservation. Dawn Bennett-Alexander inherited Ryan's consumer affairs materials. Glenn R. Schleede retained Ryan's files related to science, and these constitute the final series in the Schleede collection. Small amounts of other material were also transferred: Margo Boyle, whose file is located in the Stephen G. McConahey collection, received papers relating to the Bicentennial, and Lynn May received those relating to other general government concerns, such as GSA. The files of presidential assistant Virginia Knauer contain extensive related material on consumer affairs.


Chronological Series, 1975-76. (Box 1, 0.4 linear feet)
Copies of outgoing correspondence, memoranda, and notes to Domestic Council staff, federal agency staff and private citizens; draft presidential statements, issue papers, background material and fact sheets; meeting agendas and guest lists; weekly domestic activities reports; log book. The file concerns consumer affairs, including the Consumer Protection Agency and the Consumer Representation Plan and cultural affairs, including arts, humanities and historic preservation. The Bicentennial and minor science issues are also represented.

Arranged chronologically.


Box 1 - Chronological Series

  • Log Book
  • Chronological File, April 1975 - March 1976