Media Release — The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund announces changes to its Board of Directors made at the board’s meeting at Comic-Con International. Chris Powell stepped down as President, citing successfully meeting the goals he set upon taking the presidency in April of 2009 as the reason for the change. Powell will remain on the Board as a director. Larry Marder, the creator of Beanworld, and editor of CBLDF’s Liberty Annual 2010 was elected to succeed Powell as President. Dale Cendali, a nationally recognized leader in the field of intellectual property, joins the Board as a director.
On leaving the presidency, Chris Powell says, “I always had specific goals for the Fund that I wanted to accomplish during my term as President, and thanks to the solid efforts of my fellow board members, and the CBLDF office, we’ve been able to meet those goals in just over a year. Specifically, we relocated into a larger space that will allow us to perform our program work better, got a new website up and running, streamlined our donation processing to make our donors’ experience better, and implemented new policies that will guide the Fund as a growing organization. I’m comfortable stepping aside now to focus more on my other pursuits, and to see Larry Marder help guide the Fund into new heights of fundraising and outreach.”
Larry Marder was elected unanimously as Powell’s successor. Entering the position, Marder says, “I’m a life long believer in the words of the First Amendment. Freedom of speech is not a privilege –it is a constitutionally guaranteed right to every American regardless of his or her political beliefs. Attempts to censor artistic expression must always be challenged.” Marder adds, “2011 will be the 25th anniversary of the founding of the CBLDF. Now, as then, it is our responsibility to remain vigilant and aggressively protect the First Amendment rights of the entire comic book community of creators, retailers, publishers, and readers. I’ll continue to work hard to maintain and expand our relationships with that community, and to oversee the Fund as a transparent, responsive force for good in this industry.”
Dale Cendali joined the board at the meeting. Cendali is a partner in the prestigious law firm of Kirkland & Ellis, where she heads the firm’s Copyright, Trademark and Internet Practice Group. She has successfully litigated and tried numerous high profile cases and has argued before the United States Supreme Court. Her clients include myriad prominent individuals and companies who rely on her for her expertise in copyright, trademark, patent, Internet, trade secrets, defamation, false advertising, privacy and contractual matters. She has extensive experience representing clients in the entertainment, consumer products and technology sectors. Managing Intellectual Property Magazine named her trial victory for J.K. Rowling in the well-known “lexicon” fair use case the “Copyright Trial of the Year.” When she is not trying cases, Dale is an avid comic book collector and fan and has been since she was five years old. She is a big believer in comics as an art form and is deeply committed to the arts since her days as President of the Yale Dramatic Association.
Cendali says, “I am honored to be joining this distinguished group and in helping the CBLDF fulfill its mission supporting comic books and their creators.”
Under the leadership of Larry Marder, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s board is: Joe Ferrara – Vice President, Milton Griepp – Treasurer, Louise Nemschoff – Secretary, Dale Cendali, Peter David, Neil Gaiman, Steve Geppi, Paul Levitz, and Chris Powell.
The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1986 as a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of First Amendment rights for members of the comics community. They have defended dozens of Free Expression cases in courts across the United States, and led important education initiatives promoting comics literacy and free expression. For additional information, donations, and other inquiries call 800-99-CBLDF or visit them online at www.cbldf.org.