Upword Creative is led by Emily (Kurn) Tallman, a writer, musician and public relations professional who has managed a diverse range of communications projects both in Alaska and nationwide. After graduating from Brandeis University in 2002 with a bachelor's degree in theater arts, Emily spent a decade working as a nationally touring singer/songwriter - performing in venues and festivals coast to coast and garnering numerous honors including second place in the Woody Guthrie Songwriting Contest, third place in the Rocky Mountain Folk Festival's Emerging Artist Showcase and eight consecutive months of ranking on the Folk-DJ charts.

Prior to launching Upword Creative, Emily worked as art director and senior account executive at Thompson & Co. Public Relations, designing collateral and implementing communications strategies for a wide range of the agency's clients including the Anchorage Economic Development Corp., GCI, The Salmon Project, North Star Radiology, Great Land Trust, Alaska Heart and Vascular Institute and Arctic Spine.

Emily has lived in Anchorage since 2003 and has been a board member for the Anchorage Folk Festival and associate poetry editor for Cirque Literary Journal. She graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2014.