Jacqueline C. Charlesworth, a partner at Alter, Kendrick & Baron, LLP, is a litigator and transactional attorney whose practice is focused on music, film and other intellectual property. Previously, Ms. Charlesworth served as General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights of the U.S. Copyright Office. She is also a visiting lecturer at Yale Law School, where she teaches music law with Lisa Alter.

In addition to litigating precedent-setting copyright cases, Ms. Charlesworth is a sophisticated dealmaker and advisor on legislative issues in the areas of music and copyright. In 2018, she was named Billboard Woman Executive of the Year for her critical role in crafting and securing passage of the Music Modernization Act, landmark legislation to update U.S. music licensing rules.

At the Copyright Office, Ms. Charlesworth had primary responsibility for interpretation of the U.S. Copyright Act. As General Counsel, she oversaw a wide range of litigation, legislative, regulatory, and policy matters, including the Office’s participation in Supreme Court cases, rulemaking proceedings, and copyright registration and termination issues. She also advised Congress on copyright-related legislation and policy concerns. During her tenure, she produced an influential study on the U.S. music licensing system, Copyright and the Music Marketplace, which helped set the stage for legislative reform.

Before joining the Copyright Office, Ms. Charlesworth was in private practice, where she handled IP-related litigation and transactional matters. She also served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel of the National Music Publishers’ Association and Senior Vice President and General Counsel of The Harry Fox Agency.

Ms. Charlesworth received a B.A. from Brown University and a J.D. from Yale Law School, where she was an Executive Committee Editor of The Yale Law Journal and a founding member of the Yale Journal of Law & Feminism. Following law school, she clerked for Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and Judge Betty B. Fletcher of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.


Honors & Awards
  • Top Music Lawyer, Billboard (2018, 2019, 2020)
  • Legal Impact Report, Variety (2019)
  • Executives of the Year, Hall of Fame, Women In Music, Billboard (2019)
  • Executives of the Year, Women In Music, Billboard (2018)
  • Award for Distinguished Service, Library of Congress (2016)
  • AMEC Public Service Counsel of the Year Award (2006)
Speaking Engagements
  • California Copyright Conference Panel Discussion (November 2019)
  • Copyright Society of the USA (New York Mar. 2019)
  • APA-IPL Spring Conference (Washington DC Apr. 2019)
  • Harvard Law School (Cambridge MA Apr. 2019)
  • Fordham IP Conference (New York Apr. 2019)
  • CalCPA Entertainment Industry Conference (Los Angeles June 2019)
  • ChIPs Network (Washington DC Sept. 2019)
Professional Activities
  • Member, Los Angeles Copyright Society (2018-present)
  • Member, ALAI-USA (2017-present)
  • Adviser, ALI Restatement of the Law, Copyright (2015-present)
  • Leadership Music, Nashville, Tennessee (2014-2015)
  • Member, Copyright Society of the USA (2002-present)
Judicial Clerkships
  • Hon. Betty B. Fletcher, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • Hon. Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum, United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Associations & Admissions
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Colorado
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York
  • New York State
  • Yale Law School, J.D.
  • Brown University, B.A., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa