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Meet Emily McDowell

Emily McDowell

Founder Emily McDowell is a writer, illustrator, speaker, teacher, and entrepreneur who is fiercely committed to not doing all of those things at the same time. After spending a decade working in advertising, Emily launched this brand, originally called Emily McDowell Studio, in January 2013.

Emily’s work has been featured by The New York Times, Good Morning America, NBC Nightly News, BBC News, and NPR's All Things Considered, among many others, and in 2015, she was named one of Slate's 10 Designers Who Are Changing the World. Her first book, There Is No Good Card For This: What To Say and Do When Life Gets Scary, Awful, and Unfair To People You Love, co-authored with Dr. Kelsey Crowe, was released in January 2017.

In 2021, Emily McDowell & Friends became Em & Friends, to reflect our expansion into partnerships with additional artists and writers. Emily currently serves as the creative director of Em & Friends, and is equity partner and SVP of strategy at the Who’s There Group. She lives in Portland, Oregon.


To inquire about booking Emily as a speaker or a guest on a podcast, please email