Bartlett was first elected to the Monrovia City Council in 1974, and was elected mayor in 1988. He served as mayor for 13 years until 2001, as he opted to not run for re-election. Bartlett was also the President for the Southern California Association of Governments and the chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for the National League of Cities as well.
Bartlett ran for City Council because he saw Monrovia floundering while other cities were progressing.
Many residents cr his strong leadership as the reason for Monrovia"s transformation from a blighted and gang-infested city to the prospering city full of national retailers that it currently is today. He passed on October 11, 2015.
He was 75 years old.