Julia Ambrose provides transactional and regulatory counsel to media companies navigating the rapidly-changing video programming industry. She is also an experienced litigator, well-versed in commercial and constitutional litigation in all levels of state and federal trial and appellate courts.
Technology is evolving rapidly, but the laws and regulations governing broadcast television have not always kept pace. Julia has significant experience helping media companies and broadcast trade associations lay the groundwork for this new era of video programming consumption. She drafts and negotiates a host of agreements between broadcasters and content providers, such as streaming agreements, affiliation agreements, digital broadcasting agreements, and syndication agreements.
Julia has also represented media clients in the notice-and-comment process before the Federal Communications Commission as it creates new rules for television broadcasters, and she regularly provides written advocacy on hot-button issues before federal agencies and the courts, including the application of federal indecency standards to television broadcasts and the assertion of television stations' rights under the Copyright Act.
Julia’s clerkship experiences at the United States Supreme Court and the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals spurred her passion for appellate litigation. She welcomes the challenge of advocating for the interpretation and application of even the most complex laws in the appellate setting and helping clients navigate the often-formidable appellate process. The same passion for resolving the most demanding legal issues drives Julia’s regular engagement in litigation raising state and federal constitutional questions.
Julia has represented local school boards in a variety of trial and appellate litigation matters, including cases involving funding disputes, access to school property, free speech, discrimination, personal injury, employment, and the constitutionality of state laws governing teacher tenure.
Appellate and Constitutional Litigation
- Successful appeal setting aside a six-figure jury verdict in a multi-week wrongful termination lawsuit.
- Representation of a newspaper publisher in a multi-week jury trial and on appeal stemming from a libel claim brought by a state employee.
- Reinstatement of a federal district court order granting Westfall immunity to confidential informants working with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
Law Clerk to Associate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, United States Supreme Court, 1995-96
Law Clerk to Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III, United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, 1994-95
Honors & Recognitions
Recognized by her peers for inclusion in Business North Carolina’s "Legal Elite" in Appellate Law (2021)
Selected by her peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© for Appellate Practice (2019-2022), Commercial Litigation (2020-2022), Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) (2021-2022)
Vanderbilt University, J.D., 1994, Order of the Coif
Rhodes College, B.A., 1990, Phi Beta Kappa
District of Columbia
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd, 4th, 9th, 11th, D.C., and Federal Circuits
U.S. District Court for the Western, Middle and Eastern Districts of North Carolina
- RecognitionThe Best Lawyers in America®, 08.19.2021
- RecognitionTwenty-Six Brooks Pierce Attorneys Named to Business North Carolina’s 2021 “Legal Elite” and “Hall of Fame”Business North Carolina Legal Elite, 01.03.2021
- RecognitionThe Best Lawyers in America®, 08.20.2020
- Media MentionTVnewscheck.com, 06.12.2020
- Speaking Engagements02.04.2020
- RecognitionCommunity or Pro Bono Recognition, 12.16.2019
- RecognitionThe Best Lawyers in America®, 08.15.2019
- Press Release01.29.2019
- RecognitionThe Best Lawyers in America®, 08.15.2018
- Press Release01.03.2018
- Press Release02.02.2016
- Press Release01.31.2014
- Speaking Engagements05.04.2018
- Speaking EngagementsBrooks Pierce Partners Ed West and Julia Ambrose Present Ethics CLE for Association of Corporate Counsel01.30.2018
- Speaking Engagements02.09.2015
- Speaking Engagements11.12.2009
- Client Alert02.18.2010
Professional & Civic
Professional & Civic Activities
Vice-Chair, Appellate Practice Section, North Carolina Bar Association (2014-2015)
Chair-elect, Appellate Practice Section, North Carolina Bar Association (2015-2016)
Member, Constitutional Rights and Responsibilities Section, North Carolina Bar Association (2007-present)
The legal work that most excites me is the apparently impossible legal problem, the novel claim that has never been presented to a court for decision, the uncertainty or ambiguity in the law that demands resolution, the against-all-odds legal challenge. As Walt Disney said: “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.” Those sorts of seemingly insurmountable challenges fuel my passion for appellate litigation, because it often presents the knottiest, most difficult legal questions in a pure, almost academic setting. Those are the cases that fill our textbooks and shape our legal landscape.