Arlen Appelbaum is Senior Vice President of Legal & Business Affairs of Smithsonian Networks. He is responsible for managing and overseeing the Legal & Business Affairs Department, which he has done since starting at Smithsonian Networks in 2009.
Prior to joining Smithsonian Networks, Mr. Appelbaum served as Senior Business Affairs Counsel at New York’s flagship PBS stations Thirteen/WNET and WLIW/21, providing legal advice for the producers of the long-time running Emmy® Award-winning series Great Performances, American Masters, Dance in America, Nature, Secrets of the Dead, and Cyberchase, as well as for the mini-series Broadway: The American Musical. During his 12 years there, he received Honors from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences for a number of programs and series, including American Masters (Outstanding Nonfiction Series), Broadway: The American Musical (Outstanding Nonfiction Series), and Dance In America: Swan Lake with the American Ballet Theatre (Outstanding Special Class Program). Prior to working at Thirteen/WNET and WLIW/21, Mr. Appelbaum was Legal Counsel at Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, where he represented clients involved in the recording industry, music, theatre, publishing, and the visual arts. He taught classes at Columbia Law School’s Art Law Clinic on a variety of entertainment law topics. He started his legal career as a litigation associate at the firm Healy & Baillie.
Mr. Appelbaum currently is a member of the New York State Bar Association and its Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Section. He previously co-chaired the Committee on Communications and Entertainment Law of the New York County Lawyers’ Association, which awarded him with its Rising Star Award. As a member of the New York City Bar Association, he served on its Entertainment Law Committee, the Copyright and Literary Property Committee, and the Communications and Media Law Committee.
Mr. Appelbaum earned his JD from Boston College Law School, and he received his BS from Duke University.