Robert Corn-Revere is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, specializing in freedom of expression and communications law. He is regularly listed as a leading First Amendment and media law practitioner by The Best Lawyers in America, SuperLawyers Washington, D.C., and by Chambers USA. Best Lawyers in America named him as Washington, D.C.’s 2017 “Lawyer of the Year” in the areas of First Amendment Law and Litigation – First Amendment. He was again named as Best Lawyers’ “Lawyer of the Year” for First Amendment Law for 2019 and 2021, and in Media Law for 2022.
Mr. Corn-Revere formerly served as Chief Counsel to Chairman James H. Quello of the Federal Communications Commission. After leaving the FCC for private practice, he has served as lead counsel in a number of precedent-setting First Amendment cases. Mr. Corn-Revere successfully defended CBS Broadcasting in the “wardrobe malfunction” case arising from the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show. He argued United States v. Playboy Entertainment Group, Inc., in which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 that regulated adult cable television networks, and he served as co-counsel in United States v. Stevens, in which the Supreme Court held that a federal statute prohibiting depictions of animal cruelty violates the First Amendment.
In 2003, Mr. Corn-Revere successfully petitioned Governor George E. Pataki to grant the first posthumous pardon in New York history to the late comedian Lenny Bruce who was convicted for “obscene” comedy routines.
He has written widely on First Amendment and communications law issues, and is co-author of a three-volume treatise published by West Group entitled Modern Communications Law. His latest book, The Mind of the Censor and the Eye of the Beholder: The First Amendment and the Censor’s Dilemma, uses readable and engaging stories to show how freedom of expression is essential to American identity. It was released by Cambridge University Press in November 2021.