No. No special picture for Rogers in the Chamber


Also on the agenda. There’s absolutely no reason for this.

He already has a picture at city hall.


RECOMMENDATION Staff recommends City Council provide direction on how to proceed with Council Member Tim Murphy’s request to add a photograph of former Mayor Will Rogers in the Council Chambers.

BACKGROUND On October 9, 2018, Council Member Tim Murphy requested a first step report to discuss his request of adding former Mayor Will Rogers’ photograph in the Council Chambers. On April 19, 2018, Mayor Rogers passed away prior to finishing his term in office and as Mayor. Based on the City Clerk’s records, only one other Council Member has passed away while in office – Mr. W.A. Lovering in 1914.

However, the City of Burbank has not had a Council Member decease while holding the Mayor seat, until Will Rogers.




The current photographs and art pieces displayed in the Council Chambers include: – A group photograph of the current City Council – Individual photographs of the current City Council – A photograph of the first female Council Member – Mary Lou Howard – A painting of Freedom of Speech by Norman Rockwell (1943) – A mural by Hugo Ballin – The Four Freedoms – A description of the Hugo Ballin mural.

Additionally, on the first floor of City Hall, all photos of past mayors, including a photograph of Will Rogers, is showcased for the public. This includes photographs of over 61 Mayors since 1911. All past Mayors are also memorialized on the City of Burbank website.


He already has the photo recognition. There’s no reason for anything special in the chamber itself.

The guy was a toxic asshole for years.  Really nasty dude. He was a proven liar and a documented crook when he was young, and which — instead of just shutting up about — he wouldn’t even play straight later on.

Even at his memorial service and recognition his own family couldn’t play straight about his status as a college graduate. Was he or was he not a graduate of Goodman?  The personal bullshit even followed him to the grave.

Anyone who thinks that Will Rogers was an impressive individual has a major screw loose.  He was the kind of perversely egotistical guy who would attack and try to publicly destroy people he agreed with just because they agreed with him and he didn’t like them personally. Who acts so destructively? Who harms the cause in such a way?

Shall we get some of his old Leader articles out and make a list of his other various problems with the truth? Did you know that one of his last columns about the Smothers Brothers and his dumb, defamatorily inaccurate description of their act (in defense of Trent Lott praising Strom Thurmond’s 1948 Dixiecrat campaign!) is part of what finally got him fired? It was one of many last straws for management.

Get a grip, Burbank fanboys. Better yet, leave town and get some perspective.




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51 responses to “No. No special picture for Rogers in the Chamber

  1. Kaposki

    What was written in this article is very true. The majority of people who dealt with Will Rogers did not like him or were quietly indifferent. He had his moments of humor and charisma, in a world of boring duds, but this summary article hits the nail on the head. Toxic. Dishonest. Not a nice guy. Ya, all true.

    • semichorus

      I agree with your summary as well. There are actually things I liked about Rogers. He knew how to quickly zero in on the obvious problems with an issue, and he’d often bring things up that nobody else would. He usually knew better. But he had the worst bedside manner in the world.

      What I first said about him years ago still fits I think. He didn’t suffer fools gladly, and he thought that most people were fools. Instead of nurturing certain political positions or people with the aim of a general improvement in the community, he’d go after them.

  2. Anonymous

    Moments of charisma ? No Special picture !!!

  3. Kyle

    Actually Rogers was the fool and he attacked those who were visionary for years. I look at the demise of Burbank now and remember how he attacked anyone who, unlike himself. recognized the direction we were heading.

    • semichorus

      I often wonder what accounted for his big change in the middle-late 90s. He was never that bad in the beginning.

      The hate fest with McConkey never made any sense. Or Gordon. Criticizing Ted, sure. I often did that. Poking fun at his verbal excesses no problem (Ted was great theater.) But the viciousness of his attacks made no sense. And I understand internally that many of them were even edited down. The originals off his computer were worse.

      • Koposki

        Semi’s recollection of how Rogers attacked Ted is spot on. Rogers really went after, among other things, Ted’s specific claims of military service. He also went after Larry Zarian’s claims of attending UCLA, which he did not. So, it only ads to the dishonest educational claims of Rogers. Such hypocrisy. And, I am glad Semi remembers the resurgence of the false claims after Rogers death. Just bizarre. WTF? [indeed]

        • semichorus

          Quite a while back Mike Nolan pointed me to Will’s old application form for the open city clerk position. He had apparently put in for the council appointment.

          In it he made a BIG deal about how he knows he never graduated from Goodman, but maybe he had the credits but maybe he didn’t. I wrote about this when he was running for office a few years ago. I thought his whole stance about this mystery was pretty odd. Like, wouldn’t you know? I know every class I took.

          Then on his memorial page last year the mention goes that he graduated from Goodman. But, he said he didn’t.

          So, what happened? Did he compile the credits recently, or did his family never read his stuff? Was it just puffery on their part?

          Anyone who thinks that Will wouldn’t have been reaming someone ELSE for similar discrepancies obviously never read him in the Leader.

          He also made some scurrilous, innuendo-laden warnings about me on that WeLoveBurbank Facebook page that were terrifically uncool — warning people that they might get caught up in a criminal investigation if they ever want to comment here on this blog. Seriously, to warn people away from me.

          Uh-huh. Typical Rogers scumball tactic.

          • HK

            Will Rogers never graduated but his obituary says he did ? Rogers was a fraud.

            • semichorus

              His legacy page said he was a graduate of the old Goodman School in Chicago. But he said he never graduated. Said he wasn’t sure how many credits he had, but he knew he never graduated.

              The place changed hands back then so it’s certainly possible it became a big hassle to figure out the credits.

              No problem with him not ultimately graduating, big deal, but he says one thing his family says another.

  4. Nancy

    If Murphy wants a picture of Rogers he can pay for it himself and place it over his bed

  5. Burbank NEWS

    do we have enough water or not ? We will keep building and it will just cost you more and more for water and everything else. Affordable units ? Sure build them but as the costs of water and everything goes us they WILL NOT BE AFFORDABLE

  6. Anonymous

    Photos on the wall should emit at least half fond memories. Mr. Rogers was rude and dismissive to most people and I personally feel he does not deserve a special tribute.

    • semichorus

      Yeah, Mary Lou makes sense because she was the first female council member and was there for years. But not Rogers.

      Why all this now? It was almost a year ago.

      • Anonymous

        I grew increasingly suspicious of Rogers over the years. He disappeared during the police mess and then suddenly surfaces and runs for office. Very odd and questionable

    • semichorus

      Yes. Bottom line that as well.

      Aside from the above, there’s no good reason for this special recognition. Lots of old Burbankers are equally worthy.

      Next they’ll be renaming a school after him.

  7. Angie

    Maybe they can arrange a statue oi Rogers in front of Burbank City Hall. After all he did so many memorable things for Burbank. Who can remember anything great and memorable he did for Burbank ?

  8. Beth Abb

    Rogers was great at twisting the truth and re-writing history. Can we stick his picture next to the picture of Golonski ?

    • semichorus


      Dave G. wasn’t as bad though. He actually took the council on in 2016 over their turning the Airport vote from a citizens initiative to a simple referendum on a previous COUNCIL vote to approve the idea.

      Golonski co-wrote the original rule, and it was NOT supposed to be a referendum on council approval. Rogers too agreed with Golonski here, at least for a while.

  9. Jay

    Golonski was another let me sell out Burbank guy.

  10. anonymous

    Can the city sponsor a Rogers march ? That should come before any picture right ?

  11. Tim of Burbank

    Mr Nolan is hilarious no pictures of dead mayors wow. I think Rogers is a dead mayor so no pictures of him. I stopped watching the meetings because Mr Rogers was so bad for the Council show.

    • Shannon

      The man was nothing but an embarassment to Burbank and those who voted for him. Listening to Murphy tonight convinced me that he is a self serving emotional jerk even bringing this up. He has been so interested in Burbank that he confessed he never watched anything going on for years. What a jerk he is.

      • semichorus

        Rogers once went after Scott Schaffer in print so Murphy must love him. Schaffer was living with his ex-wife. There’s a backstory there.

        Ah, Burbank. Incestuous-ville.

    • Alan C.

      When Will Rogers was running for city council he knocked on my door. I asked him if Mike Nolan supported bim. His answer was I would not let Nolan support me I do not accept endorsements from drug addicts. I told Rogers to get off my porch and slamed my door. I did not vote for that maniac. They should put a picture of Mike Nolan up.

      • semichorus

        Did he really say that? Because for those last few years Mike had been going through extensive treatments at the VA for exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam. Rogers knew that. What a schmuck.

        Anyone else remember when Mike disappeared for a few years around 2006 or so? Even his favorite bartenders didn’t know where he was!

        Turns out he was living in Westwood at the VA hospital. The mystery was finally solved when we suddenly saw him being interviewed on TV sitting outside at some fancy coffeehouse on San Vicente. There’s Mike, and he’s talking to the reporter about politics!

        I don’t think even Bob Kramer or Dr. Gordon knew where he was. I think I asked them both.

  12. Observer

    Mike Nolan is a legend in his time. Anyone with half a brain knows there are issues BUT he is spot on with almost everything. Burbank officials thrive on running things their way and never being called on it. Mike sees to it that facts are brought forth. Fearless Mike is good for all of us.

    • Andrea

      Our city council always encourages people to come to the City Council Meeting

      NO they do NOT !

      You arrive to get searched by guards and a metal detector.

      You open the door and find an unfriendly cop staring at you.

      You get handed a paper and a yellow cardboard card that is as confusing as hell.

      You get to figure out what to do with the confusing card and then you get questioned and challenged.

      Then you wait for a while to get told you have 3 minutes and cut off before you make your point.

      Then they sit there, stare at you and give you no answer.

      None of it is welcoming what so ever.

      • semichorus

        Neither staff nor the council members are afraid of the citizenry like they used to be 20 and 25 years ago, back when dozens of people would show up to speak and the newspapers (notice the plural) would treat them with respect and write about their concerns. Oftentimes immediately.

        A third of the town would also be watching everything on Channel 6, in-between their other Tuesday night programs.

        Now? The town’s a graveyard. Everybody’s on the make (the concerned and knowledgeable old folks are mostly gone) and expedience and crass ambition are the rule.

        • Clyde Dale

          They still do pay attention to the Mike and Roy show.
          For the most part, they really hate it.
          They would much rather receive platitudes.

      • Clyde Dale

        And they wonder why some make videos for their measly 3 minutes. Who would want to endure all that agony only to be ignored.

        • Escrow Jim

          The speakers are LUCKY to just be ignored. When the cameras are off, some city officials actually bully people to shut up and not return to future meetings. I’m specifically speaking of the past Magnolia Park PBID. Several of us were bullied when we addressed the city —-and city beholding panel —- about the funds being blown and not spent to develop the area.

          • semichorus

            That was with the old Redevelopment people. An odious and dishonest bunch run by that Guerra woman and the rich developer wife who lives in Costa Rica or some such foreign vacation getaway. They used to have “Burbank” parties at her house there where people would fly in.

            Wonder if it would be the same now? MP, not the parties.

  13. Burbankian

    I honestly do not turn on council meetings very much now and that is after decades of watching every week. The reason is this council and their parade of over paid clowns just make me sick.

    I do catch it on tv once in a while and I do catch that there are nowhere as many people in the audience or getting up and speaking as there used to be but the way the council pooh baahs act I think they want everybody to just go away. When they respond their arrogance and condescending attitudes show.

    It is sad what they have done to Burbank.

  14. anonymous

    Can Murphy propose to that professor guy that they conclude a statue of Rogers will solve all the Mag Park problems ?

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