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Berman departs RIAA for IFPI role in London

First change of guard in a decade

Jay Berman, chairman of the Recording Industry of America will depart the trade org to become chairman and CEO of the Intl. Federation of the Phonographic Institute.

The move marks the first changing of the guard at the RIAA in more than a decade.

Berman will be charged with expanding IFPI’s role in the worldwide music industry marketplace. He replaces David Fine, who is retiring.

IFPI is the international, but unrelated, counterpart of the RIAA.

At the RIAA, Berman significantly raised the trade org’s profile in Washington while representing the business interests in the $12.2 billion industry. and the music industry.

Berman, who assumes the new post Jan. 1, is a well-liked exec whose understated manner was a marked contrast from his lobbying colleagues from other industries who frequented Capitol Hill.

“There is so much bullshit that goes on in politics,” Berman said “But one can survive and be good and never cross the line. The great temptation in Washington is the struggle for power. It’s what gets people into trouble. I never thought of myself in that context,” said Berman.

During Berman’s 11-year tenure, record piracy was reduced, numerous censorship bills in state capitols were defeated and international copyright laws were strengthened. He also helped found the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Rock the Vote.

Berman– who will move to London where the IFPI is headquartered — in July abdicated his throne to Hilary Rosen, his longtime second in command who is now the org’s CEO.