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Richard Sincere papers

 Unprocessed Material — Multiple Containers
Identifier: ViU-2020-0011

Content Description

Richard Sincere (1959-2019) was a writer, editor, Charlottesville election official, and a widely published analyst of foreign policy issues and domestic political topics. Sincere was born in Wisconsin and earned a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University (1981) and an M.Sc. in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science (1987). He is the author of The Politics of Sentiment: Churches and Foreign Investment in South Africa (1984) and Sowing the Seeds of Free Enterprise: The Politics of U.S. Economic Aid in Africa (1990), as well as co-editor (with Zbigniew Brzezinski) of Promise or Peril: The Strategic Defense Initiative (1986). In the 1990s, he worked as vice president of communications for Scribe Strategies & Advisors, which offered services including strategic and editorial consulting, speechwriting, research, and public opinion polling and analysis. Clients came from sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, and East Asia, as well as the United States. He ran for political office in the early 1990s with the Libertarian party and he served on the Charlottesville Electoral Board from 2004 to 2016. His articles have appeared in newspapers, magazines, and professional journals in the United States and abroad. He identified as a gay man, a Libertarian, a Republican, and a Catholic; aspects of these can be found throughout the collection and in his work. This collection contains clippings, professional and personal correspondence, reports, notebooks, notes, ephemera, pamphlets, brochures, promotional materials, newsletters, journals, magazines, manuals, minutes, agendas, court briefs, personal and professional photographs, and audiovisual and born-digital materials documenting the life and work of Richard Sincere. This collection is currently unprocessed and many of the boxes contain an overlap on various topics. For materials related to Sincere’s general personal life, including correspondence with friends and family, notebooks, and documentation of his schooling, see boxes 17, 18, 19, 20, 32, 41, 43, and 47. Correspondence, both personal and professional, is mixed and contained throughout the collection. See boxes 15, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 23, 24, 27,28, 33, 36, 38, 40, 41, 43, and 47. For materials documenting Sincere’s work in and documentation of the gay rights movement and the gay community which includes materials and court briefings on the Boy Scouts case, promotional materials for a variety of LGBT events, newsletters and promotional material for LGBT publications documenting the gay community of note specifically Gays and Lesbians for Individual Liberty (GLIL), and Queer Individual Liberty Letter (Quill), as well as subject files on topics related to with articles on LGBT topics like Religion and homosexuality, Gay rights and politics, Parents and homosexuality etc. (see box 37) see boxes 15, 17, 20, 22, 23, 24, 25, 30, 31, 34, 35, 37, 38, 42, 45, and 47. For Richard Sincere’s writing on a variety of topics including his published books, and clippings from a variety of publications (primarily political but also reviews of a variety of theater and film), see boxes 21, 22, 23, 27, 32, 36, 42, 44, and 45. For materials regarding Libertarian politics and politics more broadly, including promotional materials for a variety of campaigns, conference materials for the Libertarian party, materials related to events for the Republican National Party, Log Cabin Republicans, the Democratic National Party, clippings on a variety of political topics, organizing materials for Libertarian events, materials on civil defense, as well as numerous publications including newsletters, bulletins, and journals (particularly from the CATO Institute) related to Libertarian thought, see boxes 15, 19, 24, 25, 26, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 42, 44, and 46. For materials related to Sincere’s work in public relations for foreign governments, which include clippings and subject files on various issues in a variety of African countries (in particular South Africa and Gabon), promotional materials on various countries, agendas, and newspapers from a variety of African countries (e.g., Gabon, Republic of Georgia) see boxes 15, 18, 19, 20, 21, 24, 26, 29, 30, 31, 35, 39, 40, 44, 45, and 47. For materials that document Sincere’s work in electoral politics and the Arlington School board which include meeting minutes and agendas, manuals for poll workers, survey results, and reports, see boxes 18, 19, 23, 28, 33, 34, 40, and 41. For materials on Sincere's political candidacy which include his application to the party for candidacy, promotional materials, ephemera, and curriculum vitae, see boxes 25, 27, 34, 41, and 43. For photographs that document Sincere's personal and professional life, including early photographs of Sincere and Sincere’s family, his life in London as a student, Libertarian political conventions and events, visits from dignitaries, trips abroad, and photographs of friends, see boxes 6-14. For audiovisual materials which document political conventions, talks, training videos on the polls, home movies spanning the 1950s-2000s (both on DVDs and VHS), digitized photos, and writing, see boxes 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Boxes 16, 48-53 contain Odell Huff’s papers. Huff was a friend and colleague of Sincere. The materials relate to Huff’s school work at Yale, documents related to Gays and Lesbians for Individual Liberty (GLIL) as well as organizing for other events, as well as financial information. These boxes are currently restricted due to the financial information throughout these boxes.

Acquisition Type



Donated by Cathy Biermann, 15 January 2020.

Restrictions Apply


Access Restrictions

Boxes 1-5 are restricted as they contain AV and Born digital material. Original digital media (floppy disks, zip disks, thumb drives, born-digital files, etc.) and other media formats such as LPs, audiocassettes, videotapes, films, CDs, and DVDs cannot be handled directly by patrons. Appointments must be made to request these items held by Special Collections. In most cases, materials must be reformatted before they can be accessed, sometimes at the researcher’s expense. Please use our online reference request form ( to request access to these materials, ask for further information, or schedule access to audio-visual materials. Boxes 16, 48-53 contain materials related to Odell Huff, a colleague and friend, and are currently restricted due to personally identifiable information found in the materials.


  • Creation: 1945 - 2019



52.85 Cubic Feet (52 cubic foot boxes, 1 oversized box) : Included is VHS, audiocassettes, cds, dvds, floppy disks, mini dv, microcassettes, and u-matic tapes

468 Gigabytes (99 optical disks, 71 3.5 floppy disks, 1 sd card, 1 flash drive, 1 computer (computer not accounted for in this extent))

116 Cassettes (1 Umatic tape, 53 Audiocassettes, 43 VHS tapes, 14 Mini dv tapes, 4 Microcassette tapes, 1 8 mm video )


53 boxes

  • Books (unless written by Sincere or otherwise exceptionally interesting as additions to the collection), magazines, press kits for theater performances in the Washington DC area, sheet music, 3-dimensional objects, unless closely related to priority areas, periodicals, mailers, blank paper and envelopes, financial information like bank statements, pornography, duplicate material, software disks, commercially available cds and dvds. Also curator identified these areas (work as a theater reviewer, amateur music performance and activities around Georgetown alumni) that are not of high enough research value to be retained in any significant quantity.
  • Materials include duplicates, mailers, theater promotional material, mailers, unopened generic junk mail, commercially available magazines (like SPIN with no evidence of Sincere work), blank stationery, supplies (ie, stamps, labels), secondary source materials with no annotations, manuals, VHS tapes, and audiocassettes that held commercially available materials (like copies of Evita, the Pet Shop Boys, and mixed tapes), checkbooks, blank checks, returned checks, bank statements, tax returns, attorney-client documents, bills, late notices, health information, loan documents, bank statements, pornography, and sexually graphic photographs.
  • Duplicate photographs, blurry photographs, out-of-scope content (architectural details, shots of parking lots, etc), and materials of graphic sexual nature.