Collection Summary

Creator: Bonnie, Richard J.
Title: Addendum to the Papers of Richard J. Bonnie [k]
Accession: MSS 81-9k
Parent Collection: The Papers of Richard J. Bonnie
Description: 10 boxes
Location: This collection is stored offsite. Please contact Special Collections before your visit to ensure your papers are available.
Photograph Collection: View 0 digitized photographs
Digitized Content: 0 objects
Use Restrictions: Correspondence and certain confidential files restricted to scholars having Bonnie's permission for access.

Collection Description & Arrangement

Professor Bonnie donated these papers in 1996, 1997 and 1998. They consist of additional files pertaining to the APA, the Geneva Initiative, his Law School responsibilities, international human rights issues, the Virginia Bar Association, and the decriminalization of etc. Almost all of this material is dated 1991 to 1998.

Biographical & Historical Information

Richard Jeffrey Bonnie, John S. Battle Professor of Law and director of the Institute of Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy at the University of Virginia, is a recognized authority in the fields of mental health, drug law and criminal law. In addition to his roles at the Law School, where he began teaching in 1969, Bonnie has worked for the federal government in various capacities, and as a private consultant.

Born in 1945 at Richmond, Va., Bonnie received his bachelor of arts degree from the Johns Hopkins University in 1966 and his law degree from Virginia three years later. He ranked first in his law school class, served on the editorial board of the Virginia Law Review, and belonged to the Order of the Coif and the Raven Society. Following graduation, Bonnie taught at the Law School for a year before becoming associate director of the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, serving from 1971 to 1973. In March 1972, the commission, under the direction of former Pennsylvania governor Raymond P. Shafer, unanimously recommended the decriminalization of consumption-related marijuana offenses. Although the report was endorsed by organizations such as the National Council of Churches and the National Education Association, it was quickly rejected by President Nixon and drew only a mixed response from state legislatures. An amendment to the Uniform Controlled Substances Act, drafted partially by Bonnie and incorporating the commission's findings, was approved by the National Conference of commissioners on Uniform
State Laws in 1973.

"From 1972 through 1977," Bonnie writes in the preface to his 1980 book, Marijuana Use and Criminal Sanctions, "I was actively involved in the effort to win legislative support for reforming the marijuana laws (p. iii)." During most of these years he was also teaching at the Law School (having returned in the fall of 1973), but he found time to participate in the marijuana reform movement in several ways. Bonnie was appointed to the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (1975-1980), served as a special assistant to the Attorney General of the United States, and helped write President Ford's White Paper on Drug Abuse in 1975. He testified on marijuana policy before two U.S. Senate subcommittees and 15 state legislative committees, and in 1976-1977 helped the National Governors' Conference develop its study on state marijuana penalties and policies. In 1977 he visited several European countries for the federal government, in part to explain the Carter administration's endorsement of marijuana decriminalization.

Besides Marijuana Use, Bonnie also co-authored The Marihuana Conviction (1974) with Virginia colleague Charles H. Whitebread II, as well as numerous articles on marijuana and drug law for scholarly journals and for periodicals ranging from the Washington Post to the National Enquirer. In the 1980s, Bonnie began to move away from drug law and turn his attention more to the fields of psychiatry, mental health and criminal law. He was chairman of the State Human Rights Committee (1979-1985), which was responsible for protecting the rights of the mentally ill and retarded in Virginia's public institutions, and co-authored a casebook on criminal law (1982) with Virginia professors Peter W. Low and John C. Jeffries, Jr. Bonnie became a noted expert on the insanity defense, a heated issue following the acquittal of John Hinckley, Jr. in 1982 for the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan.

Acquisition Information

Date Received 1996
Donor Information These papers were donated to the Law School by Richard J. Bonnie in 1997 and 1998.

Content List

Box 1

  • 1995; Bonnie Activities Report
  • 1996; Bonnie Activities Report
  • 1996-1997; CPDD [College on Problems of Drug Dependence] Board of Directors
  • 1995-1996; Correspondence - Miscellaneous  (2 folders)
  • 1996; DuPont Matter.
  •  Restricted file.


Boxes 2-3

  • 1994-1996; IOM - Committee on Opportunities in Drug Abuse Research.  Letters, e-mails, drafts of reports.  (10 folders)  [Committee Chaired by Bonnie]


Box 4

  • 1996; IOM - Neuroscience's Behavioral Health
  • 1994-1996; Mental Disabilities Rights International  (2 folders)
  • 1988-1991; Miller, Robert D. (M.D.)
  • 1996-1997; Morgan, Henry Judge re Thesis
  • 1990-1994; South Africa
  • 1994-1995; South Africa - Society of Psychiatrists.  Bloemfontain Conference
  • 1997; Tobacco.  Pace Tobacco Conference
  • 1994-1996; U. S.  v.  Breckendridge [P-CAP - Bonnie]
  • 1989-1997; Virginia Capital Resource Center
  • 1995; White, Welsh S. [Government Psychiatric Examinations and the Death Penalty]

Additional Papers

Box 5

  • 1998; ABA Disability Law Conference
  • Restricted file
  • 1995; APA [American Psychiatry Association] Commission on Judicial Action
  • 1996; APA Council


Box 6

  • 1996-1998; APA Council on Psychiatry and the Law (4 folders)


Box 7

  • 1997; APA Council on Psychiatry and the Law.  Commission on Judicial Action
  • 1993-1994; APA Human Rights Activities
  • 1997; APA Isaac Ray Award
  • 1995; APA Leadership Conference.  Council on Psychiatry and the Law
  • n.d.; Brown, Thomas Rev.
  • 1996-1997; CPDD [College on Problems of Drug Dependence] Drug Policy Task Force
  • 1997; CPDD Meeting
  • 1998; Cooke v. Cooke


Box 8

  • 1995-1997; Geneva Initiative on Psychiatry   (7 folders)


Box 9

  • 1996; [Geneva Initiative] Fourth Meeting of Reformers.  Madrid
  • 1996-1997; Restricted
  • 1996; Journey of Hope
  • 1995; MacArthur Network: Future Agenda
  • 1995; MacArthur Program: Agreement
  • 1997-1998; Mandatory Outpatient Treatment
  • 1995; McVeigh, Timothy
  • 1997; Miscellaneous Correspondence
  • 1993-1994; Price, Ron
  • 1994-1995; Reformers in Psychiatry .  Second and Third Conference


Box 10

  • 1994; Russian Mental Health Law.  Translation   (M. E. Sharpe, 1994)
  • 1997; South Carolina Policy. [Seminar]
  • 1997; Slyter; Ethical Issues in Stroke Research
  • 1997; State Board Human Rights Study
  • 1993-1995; [UVA.  Health Science Center].  Medical Center Hour Planning
  • 1996-1997; Virginia Capital Representation Resource Center



Associated People

Use Policy

Access Correspondence and certain confidential files restricted to scholars having Bonnie's permission for access.
Use Restrictions Correspondence and certain confidential files restricted to scholars having Bonnie's permission for access.
Preferred Citation

The Papers of Richard J. Bonnie, MSS 81-9k, Box Number, Special Collections, University of Virginia Law Library

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