Here's an excerpt from the press release:
The annual award recognizes contributions of an individual or group that pursues and supports the Constitutional purpose of the U.S. Copyright Law, fair use and the public domain. The award is named after L. Ray Patterson, a key legal figure who explained and justified the importance of the public domain and fair use. Fair use is a key exception of the copyright law that allows for the use of a copyright without prior authorization and helps to promote learning, new creativity, scholarship and criticism.
Professor Suber is being recognized for his work in the open access movement that began in academia in response to increasing costs of scholarly journals. His goal is to provide free, public access to scientific information for the public good as well as provide an alternative venue for scientific publishing, one outside of the price-inflated research journal marketplace. Suber is a professor of philosophy at Earlham College, a senior researcher at Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC), and a Fellow at Harvard University Library’s Office for Scholarly Communication. He also is member of the Board of Enabling Open Scholarshipand serves as Open Access Project Director at Public Knowledge.
Among his colleagues in our nation's capital, Suber is regarded as a leader in the quest to protect open access.
"There is no greater champion for open access than Peter Suber," Gigi B. Sohn, president and co-founder of Public Knowledge, said."The open access concept — that the public should have access to research that is paid for with tax dollars — may seem to be common sense, but it is not widely accepted in Washington. Peter has led a multi-year crusade to implement the idea, often in the face of determined corporate opposition. The American Library Association chose well in selecting Peter for this splendid award."