Defense (Left Back)
Sociology (Minor in English)
Favorite Berkeley Eats:
Favorite Study Spot at Cal:
Favorite Watering Hole While at Cal:
(Old) Bear’s Lair & Raleigh's
Favorite Cal Soccer Memory:
Warming up before big games, Stanford games, and playing with Wyatt on the field.
If I had one word to describe Emily Ward, it would be ‘authentic’. Emily has always been her true unapologetic authentic self. She knows what she wants, trusts her own judgment, and works to make her vision a reality.
Emily spent most of her time on the field at left back, chasing down opposing teams’ offenses and proving to be a key part of the Bear’s defense. Off the field, she was known as the team goofball. Her laugh is infectious, and she has a naturally inviting, warm, and friendly personality. I challenge you to spend time with Emily and not leave feeling inspired.
Emily is a California native who grew up in Laguna Beach. After graduating in 2007, she moved to New York City. It was there, in 2012, that Emily would meet her future business partner and “work wife” Louisa Pierce.
Emily's mother-in-law is a Cal alum. She attended Cal in the 60s and was a ceramics major.
Her husband’s grandfather is also a Cal alum and ran track.
In 2013, Emily and Louisa moved to Nashville, where they combined their design talents and dynamic personalities to create the Pierce & Ward design firm. Building a business on their distinctive and innovative designs, they quickly found themselves in high demand from a roster of high-profile A-list celebrities, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Dakota Johnson, Kate Hudson, Karen Elson, Lily Aldridge and Caleb Followill (just to name a few).
By 2015, the growing national demand for Pierce & Ward designs forced them to implement a new “divide and conquer” business strategy. Emily began working out of Los Angeles while Louisa began operating from Birmingham.
In 2020, they released their debut interior design book, A Tale of Interiors.
In 2021, Pierce & Ward reached the pinnacle of achievement in the world of design and architecture, as the firm was named to Architectural Digest’s Top 100.
Emily attributes Pierce & Ward’s success to the founders staying true to themselves while constantly evolving their style: “Having a partner in business is really something special. We challenge each other. We push each other to be better and to ensure that we are constantly re-creating spaces. Every space we create tells a story.”
Emily currently lives in Hollywood with her husband, Giovanni, and their two adorable two and half year-old twins, Enzo and Maude. They also have a lovable chocolate lab fur baby named Buster Brown. When Emily is not busy growing her design empire, she enjoys collaging, long walks, and Pilates.
Written By: Amy Minicilli ‘04
Emily has a way of making you belly laugh no matter what kind of mood you’re in. She’s the life of the party, the brightest light in the room, and the friend who will always hear you and justify your feelings when you need it. She’s gorgeous inside and out, has personality for days, and is the strongest person I know. She’s endured the hardest of times and has made everyone around her proud despite the challenges. There’s no one like Em.
Alivia Mazura Williams '07
It’s not lost on me that the nicest place I’m probably ever going to live is the apartment on Parker street that I shared with Emily. Even then, she had the ability to make a space a home. She was so beyond her years and out of my league when it came to imaging what a home could be. “Decorating” has never felt like the right word because what she did then, and of course now, was bring rooms to life and make everyone who entered them feel a specific emotion. She made Parker street this incredible haven that we could all escape to regardless of what was happening in our lives or on the field. And entering her room on Parker street was like being lifted out of Berkeley and introduced to some kind of cloud that you didn’t even know existed. And this is all when she was 20. The fact that Emily is being recognized nationally for her work is not surprising to me at all, she has always been truly gifted. I just sort of can’t believe that I got to be the recipient of that gift when I was a college punk!Beyond her art, however, Emily is a person that effortlessly spills love and warmth as she moves through life. We moved to New York together after college and began to become adults. And even though our paths diverged massively at that point, her into the world of celebrity stardom and mine into dysfunctional classrooms :), she always held me close, and held me dear, and never lost sight of our shared history and friendship. I will always love her.
Anna Key Jesseman '07
Seeing Emily evolve and grow into the beautiful and talented partner, mother, friend, and entrepreneur she is today has been an absolute joy to watch and experience first-hand.
Anyone who's around Emily knows how infectious her energy and her laugh is - she is magnetic. She has built a business and career around trusting her gut and following her unique (and stunning) aesthetic. I admire how deeply she knows herself and how she can create such beauty seemingly effortlessly.