PBS’s Steve Friedman dies; directed copyright administration

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Steve Friedman, longtime director of copyright administration at PBS, died April 4.



Friedman was responsible for the recovery and distribution of U.S. and Canadian cable and satellite copyright loyalties to stations and producers. “He was known throughout the public media system for his integrity, as well as his music acumen and copyright experience,” PBS said in a statement.

He joined PBS in 1985 as a copyright associate.

Friedman earned a bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., with concentration in German and classical Greek languages.

For many years, he volunteered at Learning Ally, formerly Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic, where he voiced audiobooks for people with visual or learning disabilities.

Friedman is survived by two brothers, Jon Friedman and his partner, Chantana Bishop, and Michael Friedman Sr. and wife Linda; a sister, Roseanne Hochuli, and her husband George; as well as a niece and nephew.

A memorial service is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. May 17 at Friends Meeting of Washington, 2111 Florida Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. Participants are encouraged to bring a song, story, photo or other memories to share.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Learning Ally (20 Roszel Road, Princeton, NJ 08540), earmarked for DC studio or programs.

  • David Thiel / WILL

    Very sorry to hear this. Steve was a great help to me over the years as I waded into the morass of music clearance.

  • Carole Adornetto

    Steve was one-in-a-million. . . always quick to return a phone call for help and with the usual upfront disclaimer that he was not a lawyer, he’d steer you in the right direction. He was my go-to guy when I first came to public television and he stayed that way for 26 years of my television career. I loved the guy. My condolences to his family and to the entire public tv system. His loss will be felt for many years to come.
    Carole Adornetto, AETN Director of Production

  • Scott Houston

    RIP Steve. I will always appreciate your politeness, candor and helpfulness during our once or twice a year “Hey Steve… What can you tell me about …” conversations. Steve was a font of not-easy-to-acquire institutional knowledge that will be sorely missed. I am so sorry to hear of his passing and am sorry I never knew him beyond our work related calls.
    Scott Houston, Host and Producer of The Piano Guy and Making Music on public television