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February 3, 2017

Meet Celia Muller

As an Associate Counsel in the Law Department, Celia Muller serves as legal counsel for a number of amazing teams at WNET – including Children’s & Educational Media, Chasing the Dream, IEG, MetroFocus, PBS NewsHour Weekend, and NYC-ARTS. “I help these teams with a host of issues, from production contracts to fair use analysis and pre-broadcast review. My main legal specialties are in digital/social media, trademarks, and newsgathering,” Celia says. Read on to learn about the path that led Celia to WNET, her favorite places in Brooklyn, and more.

What is your background, and how did you land at WNET?

Many years ago I got a B.A. in Archaeology – and wound up at Columbia Law School after I realized the Ph.D. path was not for me.  In law school, I became very interested in copyright, a legal doctrine which at its most basic level asks people to consider what art is and what it’s worth.  I was lucky enough to find a summer internship after my first year at a media organization that let me explore copyright in the real world – under Bob Feinberg here at WNET (in the old building on 33rd Street).  After I graduated, I practiced at a couple of law firms: I worked in trademark litigation at Proskauer Rose LLP, and at Davis & Gilbert LLP, I advised clients in the advertising industry.  I had a great experience during my WNET internship and had stayed in touch with Bob, so when I saw a listing for an Associate Counsel position here in fall 2014, I reached out…and the rest is history.  I’ve now been at WNET for just over two years.

For our Media with Impact campaign, we’ve been asking viewers to share stories describing how THIRTEEN has influenced their life. How has THIRTEEN (or the PBS station of your childhood) inspired you?

I grew up in New England with academic parents who did not believe in non-public TV – so I watched a lot of WGBH.  I was really really into Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, but am still terrible at geography.

Where do you live, and what are some of your favorite places in your neighborhood?

I live in Brooklyn at the edge of Boerum Hill and Gowanus. I’m a huge fan of the food and beer at Threes Brewery, and of the divey vibe and jukebox at local watering hole Brooklyn Inn.  I also love living near a vibrant arts community, and am involved with the annual Gowanus Open Studios event.

What book are you currently reading?

I’m in an amazing multi-generational book club with my aunt; we just finished Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts, which is a stunningly beautiful book. I am now reading Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center by bell hooks, and also catching up on Brian K. Vaughn’s graphic novel series Saga.

Do you have a special interest or hobby outside of work? If so, tell us about it!

If you’ve noticed or tasted home-baked cookies and cakes in Legal, chances are I brought them in: I love baking. At this point I’ve actually made a number of wedding cakes for friends and family. I will be doing another this March. The craziest one I’ve done so far, though, was a multi-tier David Bowie “Man from Mars” tribute cake for a huge space-themed party a friend threw last fall. You can check it out on my Instagram page.

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