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Apr 17, 2024 by Marc Peruzzi

Meet a Creative: Julie Brown Davis

Journalist, Content Strategist, Copy Writer

Home Base / Tahoe City, California.

Activities / Skiing, mountain biking, backcountry skiing, camping, hiking, traveling.

Why Julie

One afternoon, while she was studying journalism at UC Berkeley, Julie Brown Davis met with her graduate school advisors. They asked her what she wanted to do with her career. She said she wanted to work for Powder magazine. “I was the person reading a magazine about skiing in the courtyard of a serious journalism school, while everyone else was reading the New Yorker,” says Julie, adding: “I love the New Yorker, too, of course,” says Julie, “but I’m a skier and a journalist, and at that time, combining the two was the dream.” A few months later, Powder offered Julie an editorial internship, which quickly turned into a staff job. She finished her tenure at Powder a few years later as managing editor . 

Julie on assignment in Montana for Powder magazine.
Passion for the outdoors and journalism are symbiotic—with effort.

Today, Julie is a writer and journalist based in Reno, Nevada, with more than 15 years of experience in journalism. After several years in San Diego working for Powder, Julie moved back to the Sierra Nevada to be closer to the mountains in Lake Tahoe where she grew up. Her recent work has been published in The New York Times, the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, SFGATE, Deseret magazine, the Tahoe Quarterly, San Diego Magazine, and many more publications. She also employs her journalism experience to write stories and manage content for brands and nonprofits in the outdoors. “I think of writing as a trade. I’m a wordsmith and I craft stories. I use narrative to help people connect with audiences and build community,” she says.

Specialized Skills

Julie writes long-form features and essays and reported articles and blog posts. But at her core, Julie is a beat reporter who knows how to deliver an assignment on deadline. Before graduate school, Julie’s first journalism job was in a busy newsroom at a local paper, with a daily deadline at 3 p.m. and a copy editor who marked up her drafts in red ink. “Every morning, I’d compare the draft I sent to my editor with the story that got published in the newspaper and I’d study the edits, line by line. That—more than graduate school—is how I learned how to report and write. I still lean on those early lessons for the work I do today,” she says.

What's Next

Julie gravitates toward stories about mountain communities that allow her to think deeply and follow her innate curiosity. “Small towns are microcosms where you can zoom in on big issues that people in large cities are dealing with, too,” she says. She’s currently working on several longform, reported stories that delve into the precarious balance between tourism-driven economies and sensitive environments that need protecting.