RENO, Nev. — Any patient who has stepped into one of the area's hospitals or medical practices has likely experienced Marie Wikoff's work.
Design-minded and professionally driven, Wikoff owns Wikoff Design Studio and has devoted her career to designing healing environments. These environments range from hospital wings to restaurants to professional offices.
“Some people don't believe that corporate environments can be healing, but we spend too much of our time there for them not to be,” Wikoff said in reference to her client, Eide Bailly.
She has designed many local healthcare projects, such as Renown Health's Children's ER, the Postpartum Floor, Children's Hospital, Children's Healing Garden & Waiting, the Ronald McDonald House Family Room and assisted with the design of the South Meadows Medical Center.
Her work can also be seen locally and regionally at the Northern Nevada Medical Center, Carson Dermatology, Carson Dermatology, Carson Medical Group, Sierra Nevada ENT, Reno Oncology Consultants and more. Wikoff's design chops are even on display in Brazil at the Hospital de Cancer de Barretos, Children's Hospital.
Committed to her craft, Wikoff has also achieved many professional accreditations and is a member of many associations, such as the Evidence-based Design Accreditation and Certification, National Council of Interior Design Qualification, Registered in the State of Nevada, The California Council for Interior Design Certification, USGBC LEED AP and American Institute of Architecture, Allied Professional.
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She is the only American Academy of Healthcare Interior Designers accredited designer in the state of Nevada.
While she brings this expertise to each project she works on, Wikoff also brings a wealth of life experience as well.
In the decade since launching Wikoff Design Studio, she has grown her business, honed her skills and worked with organizations around the world.
On top of all those accomplishments, she also battled with and beat breast cancer. In light of this important anniversary, Wikoff reflected on the lessons the past decade has brought her both professionally and personally.
“You'd learn a lot, you're in the field, you listen to people every day, but until you actually get in that chair and you are that patient like I was, you just never know,” Wikoff said. “It's a completely different perspective.”
Wikoff said she is bringing that unique perspective to the clients she works with now.
“It's a little bit easier for me to understand what their boundaries are,” she said. “I look into them a little bit more. I always did beforehand, but now I can listen to and ask more questions and figure out what's going on in their situation.”
Her experience with breast cancer and her longevity in business have also taught her the importance of finding balance in her life.
“I have to be careful about all the projects I choose and try to balance them so I can enjoy life a little bit more than I did before,” Wikoff said.
In addition to spending time with her husband and family, Wikoff said her philanthropic work with Ronald McDonald House Charities Northern Nevada is incredibly rewarding.
Now, she's looking forward to what the next 10 years may hold.
“I'm back, and I'm ready to be strong and help people along the way, too,” she said.
Annie Flanzraich is a freelance writer and owner of Flanz Writes, a Reno-based business that offers writing, editing, strategy, and other content services.