December 18, 2019 Librarian of Congress Appoints Maria Strong as Acting Register of Copyrights

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden announced today that she has appointed Maria Strong as Acting Register of Copyrights and director of the U.S. Copyright Office, effective January 5, 2020. She succeeds Register of Copyrights Karyn A. Temple, who announced last week that she will be leaving the Copyright Office to accept a new position in the private sector.

“I am pleased to announce that Maria Strong has agreed to act as Register of Copyrights,” Hayden said. “Maria has had a stellar career here in the Copyright Office, and we are confident that she will ably guide the office and continue to advance its many ongoing initiatives like modernization while we undertake the search for a permanent appointee.”

“Maria Strong is an extremely talented lawyer and manager, and I have greatly enjoyed working with her over the years. She will serve the Copyright Office and the public well during this transition,” said Temple.

Strong has served as Associate Register of Copyrights and director of Policy and International Affairs since April 23, 2019. In her position, Strong assisted the Register with critical policy functions of the U.S. Copyright Office, including domestic and international policy analyses, legislative support, and trade negotiations. She directed the Office of Policy and International Affairs, representing the Office at meetings of government officials concerned with the international aspects of copyright protection and enforcement, and providing regular support to Congress and its committees.

Prior to that position, Strong served as deputy director of policy and international affairs since January 2015. Upon joining the Copyright Office in 2010, she served as senior counsel for policy and international affairs and also served as acting general counsel from April to July 2013. Before joining the Office, Strong spent 19 years in private practice in Washington, DC, where she represented clients in the media, technology, and entertainment sectors and provided analyses and advocacy on global and domestic issues involving copyright law, enforcement, trade policy, and e-commerce. She began her legal career as a staff attorney at the Federal Communications Commission.

Strong earned her JD from George Washington University Law School, her MA in communications management from the University of Southern California's Annenberg School of Communications, and her BA in communication studies from UCLA.

Congress created the Copyright Office in 1897 as a separate department of the Library of Congress. The Register of Copyrights serves by appointment of, and under the general direction of, the Librarian of Congress.

The Copyright Office plays a crucial role in the nation’s cultural and economic development. Congress enacted the first federal Copyright Act in 1790 in accordance with Article 1, section 8 of the United States Constitution “to promote the progress of science and useful arts by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.” The Copyright Office is the principal federal entity charged by statute with the administration of the U.S. copyright law. Among other statutory duties, the register oversees the copyright registration and recordation systems of the United States, manages statutory royalty fees totaling more than a billion dollars annually, advises Congress on domestic and international copyright policy issues, and provides support on copyright matters to courts and executive branch agencies.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States — and extensive materials from around the world — both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services, and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov, and register and record creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

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PR 19-121
2019-12-18
ISSN 0731-3527