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Why Joray Serves

Senior Interior Designer Joray Rohde has more than 21 years of design experience, specializing in Systems Furniture Design, Space Planning and Project Management. She has spent much of her career working improve healthcare environments by infusing them with warmth and comfort, helping to alleviate stress for patients and their families. Since joining Go Energistics in 2018, she has applied her skills in design towards Veteran’s health projects.

When asked why she serves, she shares how her career took an unexpected course, which lead her to her current position at Go Energistics.

“The work I do today is incredibly important to me, as it allows me to improve the lives of people in vulnerable positions using my skills as a designer. However, I did not expect to work in healthcare when I began my career.

I was initially drawn to interior design because I knew I wanted to work in a field where I could exercise both my creativity and problem-solving skills. When I got to college, I took a course in Systems Furniture Design, and was struck by how, despite it being a design class, it really was like solving a big puzzle. There are limits and boundaries within this kind of design, and I liked being able to piece together how things can best fit, and then get creative within those boundaries.

In that way, I’ve been certain about my career path for a long time, but it was totally happenstance that I ended up applying those skills towards healthcare. To be honest, I wasn’t interested at first, due to the perception of hospitals as scary, cold and gray – places to be avoided if you can help it. I ended up taking a position in healthcare after moving from New York to Florida and was apprehensive to say the least. It was a colleague there who then told me to think about it as a privilege. I got to thinking about how many of the people who will visit the spaces we design will be under some of the greatest stress of their lives. They are going through struggles, they are emotional, they are healing, they may be dying. I realized I could help them ease some of that pain by giving them an environment that’s pleasant to be in during their time of struggle. I could alleviate what I didn’t like about hospitals through my work. Since then, my philosophy is: I may not be a doctor or a nurse, but I can help patients by making their surroundings comfortable, so they can focus on getting better.

Years later, when the opportunity came for me to join Go Energistics, I was excited to be able to do this for Veterans. This comes in large part thanks to my upbringing. I’m not quite an ‘Army Brat’ but my grandfather was a career military man, serving as a chief warrant officer in the Army, and my father served for four years in Vietnam after being drafted. We lived in a military town, near his base, so I was always surrounded by Veterans and from a young age I understood how things like PTSD can affect a person. When I set out to be an interior designer, it never occurred to be that I could use my skills to help them. I am so grateful to be able to pay it forward in my capacity and help those who have sacrificed so much for my freedom.”

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