Tributes to Charles T. Manatt

"Hillary and I are deeply saddened by the passing of Chuck Manatt. We were friends for 30 years, and saw firsthand how he used his energy, intellect, and common sense to help restore the Democratic Party after 1980, to make America more prosperous and just, and to make friends for our nation around the world. I was proud of his service as ambassador to the Dominican Republic during my second term and Hillary and I will always be grateful for his support and friendship. Our thoughts and prayers are with Kathy, Michele, Timothy, Daniel, and his grandchildren." – Former President Bill Clinton

"Chuck and I became friends through our shared love of the Democratic Party and California. We worked together to bring the 1984 Democratic Convention to San Francisco and over many years to elect Democrats at every level. I was impressed by his energy and intellect; I was inspired by his idealism." – House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

“Chuck Manatt was a longtime friend since our years together at Iowa State – someone who espoused strong Midwestern values developed during his days in Audubon when he was helping his father Price care for the family farm. It was those values that propelled him throughout his distinguished career in the law and in politics. Today, Ruth and I join with so many grieving his loss, no more so than Kathy and their family. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of them during this difficult time.” – US Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)

“Today I am thinking about Chuck’s extraordinary leadership, his passion for politics and public service, and his unshakable devotion to his country, his friends and his family. I particularly remember Chuck as National Chair of the Democratic Party in 1984 when the Convention was held in San Francisco and I was serving as mayor.  In my view, there has never been another convention quite like the one Chuck presided over that year." – US Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)

"With Chuck Manatt’s passing our country and our party lost a very good man...  His opinion remained sought after to the day of his death, and his influence will long be felt in our party. My thoughts go out to his family and friends and all those in our Democratic Party who are missing him today.” – Democratic National Party Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz

"While Chuck was perhaps best known as a gifted Democratic Party activist and leader, his many contributions extended well beyond America's shores. As the founder and first chairman of NDI, he understood the positive role our country could play in advancing democracy and human rights worldwide. And as ambassador, he represented the U.S. with distinction ... He cherished the tenets of democracy at home and abroad." – National Democratic Institute Chair and Former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright 

"Chuck was political to his core, and proud of it. He recognized that political parties everywhere can provide a structure for political participation, and, through the practice of democratic politics, the aspirations of people can find concrete expression. NDI will always honor his legacy – a passion for, and a deep and abiding belief in democratic politics." – National Democratic Institute President Kenneth Wollack 

“Chuck Manatt was a great man, a great Iowan and a great American. Today, my thoughts are with his family and the many friends he leaves behind. His imprint on American politics and the lives of everyone he touched will never be forgotten.” – Congressman Bruce Braley (D-Iowa)

"Chuck was an excellent lawyer, an engaged citizen, an avid mentor, and a beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend.  His story is inextricably linked with decades of politics, and the joys and heartbreaks that go along with a life lead in such an exciting and dynamic field. He was a true pillar of every community in which he lived – from Iowa, to Washington, DC, to Los Angeles – and I know his loss is felt by many." – Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa 

“Over the last 45 years, Chuck Manatt has been a mover and shaker in California and national Democratic party politics like few others. My fondest memories of him, however, are of his remarkable work in advancing democratic values and human rights around the world as the founding chairman of the National Democratic Institute. Chuck will be greatly missed – for his support of countless Democratic candidates, his participation in political and civic organizations, his passion for international relations, practices and institutions and his great love of democracy." – Representative Howard Berman (D-CA) 

“Chuck Manatt – as we all knew him – served the university in countless ways, forging relationships with business and government and leading the board during a period in which the university grew remarkably both in size and in academic distinction,” said GW President Steven Knapp. “Ambassador Manatt’s extraordinary vision, vigorous personality and generous spirit will be sorely missed.” – George Washington University President Steven Knapp

“Our country and all of us at the USCCD will sorely miss Chuck’s strong support of citizen engagement in international relations as well as his trademark wit. His wise counsel as well as his contacts and networks of friends were invaluable to the USCCD in our fundraising efforts and programs. His most recent special gift to the USCCD was a beautiful reception held at his Washington office during the U.S. Summit for Global Citizen Diplomacy for all of the international guests. Our condolences go out to Chuck's family and loved ones at this difficult time.” – U.S. Center for Citizen Diplomacy  

“Manatt served as Chairman of IFES’ Board of Directors from 1993 to 1999 and was a distinct leader, with unwavering commitment to spreading democracy around the world and helping those who are less fortunate. He touched the lives of many, mentoring and befriending people at every stage of his distinguished career and with a keen interest in nurturing future political and business leaders ... In recognition of his achievements, IFES presents the annual Charles T. Manatt Democracy Awards honoring three individuals, a Republican, a Democrat and a member of the international community. The awards emphasize IFES’ belief that the work of empowering people transcends political parties and national borders and pay tribute to outstanding men and women who share a common commitment to freedom and democracy, much like Manatt.” – International Foundation for Electoral Systems




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