March 27, 2006 Register of Copyrights Marybeth Peters Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Press Contact: Audrey Fischer (202) 707-0022

Marybeth Peters, Register of Copyrights in the U.S. Copyright Office, has been presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Copyright Society. The award was presented on March 11 at the organization’s spring conference in Carlsbad, Calif., at which the Register delivered the keynote address.

“I am grateful to the Society for recognizing me with this prestigious award,” said Peters. “I am extremely fortunate to have a job I love in a magnificent institution with a talented and hardworking staff.”

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Copyright General Counsel David Carson referred to Peters’ ability to bring people together. “Marybeth has drawn the praise of congressional leaders in the field of intellectual property from both sides of the aisle, and from the House and Senate.”

Peters, who recently celebrated 40 years of service in the Copyright Office, received written tributes on the occasion from Librarian of Congress James H. Billington, former and current members of Congress and key figures in the copyright community. She was recognized by Congress with the following remarks by Rep. Vernon Ehlers (R-Mich), which were entered into the Feb. 14, 2006, issue of the Congressional Record.

“I want to extend my thanks for Ms. Peters’ leadership at the Copyright Office, which a vital component of the Library of Congress,” said Rep. Ehlers. “I want to extend deepest thanks on behalf of the Joint Committee on the Library to Ms. Peters for her stewardship of the Copyright Office as Register and her long years of service to Congress and the American people.”

Peters has served as U.S. Register of Copyrights since August 7, 1994—the 11th person to hold that office since the appointment of the first Register of Copyrights, Thorvald Solberg, in 1897. As Register, she testifies before Congress and frequently speaks on copyright-related topics at conferences in the United States and abroad.

Prior to becoming Register, Peters held the position of policy planning advisor to the Register, acting general counsel of the Copyright Office and as chief of both the Copyright Examining Division and the Information and Reference Division. She served as a consultant on copyright law to the World Intellectual Property Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, from 1989-1990.

Peters received an undergraduate degree from Rhode Island College and a law degree, with honors, from the George Washington University Law Center. She has served as a lecturer in the Communications Law Institute of the Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law and as an adjunct professor of copyright law at the University of Miami School of Law and the Georgetown University Law Center.

She is a member of the bar of the District of Columbia, the Copyright Society of the U.S.A., the Intellectual Property Section of the American Bar Association, the District of Columbia Bar Association, the ALAI-USA (Association Litteraire et Artistique Internationale) and the Computer Law Association. She was recently made an honorary member of the Los Angeles Copyright Society, an organization of lawyers working in the fields of copyright, entertainment or communications law.

The U.S. Copyright Office was established in the Library of Congress in 1870. The office registers more than 500,000 claims to copyright annually, records and maintains documents related to copyrights, administers compulsory licenses and provides policy expertise to the U.S. Congress and executive branch agencies. The Copyright Office transfers more than 1 million items each year to the Library’s collections. For additional information, visit the Copyright Office Web site at


PR 06-070
ISSN 0731-3527