Media Centre – FAQs

Please feel free to use the following for interviews, articles or to help promote upcoming events, and if you need any additional information please contact Urve directly.


Urve is an unusual name. How is it pronounced?
My name has always been a conversation starter! Many people think the “e” on the end is silent and call me “Irv”.  For my English friends, it’s pronounced “Ir-va”. In Estonian, it’s pronounced a bit differently.

Why aren’t there many stories about Estonia?
In August 1944, thousands of people, including my parents, escaped to the West as the Soviets invaded Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, and then occupied those countries for the next forty-five years. There are so many untold stories about bravery and determination, both in the diaspora community, and the people who lived under communism for decades.

What are some of your favorite books and authors?

  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  • Property by Valerie Martin
  • Purge by Sofia Oksanen
  • Blink and Caution by Tim Wynne-Jones
  • The Life of Pi by Yann Martel

I also love to read cookbooks. I have a collection of old cookbooks, the oldest from 1896. I usually find them at church rummage sales. I don’t know why, but I find it very relaxing to read about food preparation. I also love how the recipes provide insight into day-to-day life.