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Shiva Mendez, CID, IIDA, LEED AP BD+C, EDAC


Principal – Behavioral Health Practice Leader, Co-Chair
HOK Diversity Advisory Council

Throughout her almost 30 years of experience in healthcare design, Shiva has demonstrated an ability to think strategically and balance patient experience, operational efficiency, economic
prudence and design excellence. Her work in programming and planning healthcare and correctional facilities embodies a deep commitment to best practices, applying relevant research and benchmark data to guide the proposed solutions. With her background in interior architecture, Shiva melds awareness of aesthetics, human factors, methods and materials to create places that support patient healing and staff focus. A passionate advocate for the users of the projects, she deeply believes in the power of environment to reduce stress, promote safety, and provide delight.

As Behavioral Health Practice Leader, Shiva, along with her colleagues Virginia Pankey and Kristen Zilch-Markos, bring a coordinated focus on the therapeutic environment as a component of care. Using the design and materials to promote engagement, reduce anxiety, increase safety for patients and staff and contribute to improved outcomes.  Wherever the site of care for those experiencing mental illness, the Behavioral Health Center of Expertise will advocate for therapeutic milieu, trauma informed strategies and improved access to treatment and provider engagement.

In addition to project work, Shiva is the Co-Chair of HOK’s Diversity Advisory Council and passionate advocate for equity and inclusion in the practice of Architecture. She originated HOK’s mentoring in San Francisco and supports the continuation of that program, as well as many of HOK’s DEI initiatives across the firm.   She was elevated to the HOK Board of Directors in 2021 and serves on that body to advise on firm’s work in promoting diversity and equity internally and in the communities we work.