Douglas Durkin


Immersed throughout his life in the art of creative expression, Douglas founded Durkin Design in 2002. He is driven and defined by the practice of integrating beauty and function, and the profound influence that design holds for the people who live with it.

After graduating from Cornell University, Douglas began his career in New York, and held positions with prominent design firms Ellen Lehman McCluskey and Robert Metzger. He relocated to San Francisco in 1989, and was a Design Principal with the Wiseman Group through 2002.

With an enduring passion for design and architecture, Douglas’ work is defined by his romantic approach and eclectic style. His focus is on creating spaces that express and complement who his clients are and how they live. The firm overall is known for its fidelity to quality experience and execution, rather than an adherence to any one visual style. This ethos results in Douglas’ seasoned expertise in a broad range of styles.

Douglas is deeply committed to the Bay Area design and arts community and has been involved with San Francisco’s Museum of Modern Art since 2010.

He is one of the original founders of FOG Design + Art, the pre-eminent Bay Area design and art fair, benefitting the museum. He serves on the FOG Steering Committee, and is the Chair of the FOG Forum, which supports acquisitions for the museum’s Architecture and Design Collection.

Douglas served as Chair of the A & D Collection’s Accessions Committee for five years, as well as the Chair of the FF & E Oversite Committee for the Snohetta Expansion. He continues to serve on the A & D Accessions Committee, the museum’s Building Committee, and is a member of the Director’s Circle.

Nationally, Douglas is a member of the Institute of Classical Architecture, receiving the Julia Morgan Award in 2016 for large-scale residential interior design.

Durkin Design is based in San Francisco, and Douglas shares his time between San Francisco and New York.

Alisa Tanphanich

Project Manager

As a versatile and proactive project manager Alisa inhabits the sweet spot between creativity and detail. Her thoughtful, deliberate, and attentive manner brings steadiness and calm to her work with colleagues and clients alike. Alisa graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a B.A. in Communications and English; she also holds a Certificate in Interior Design and Interior Architecture from University of California at Berkeley Extension. She joined our firm in 2016.

Alyssa Muench

Senior Design Associate

Alyssa brings well-grounded pragmatism and steadfast dedication to a job well done. Her unflappable approach to daily design challenges is deeply appreciated by all – and stems in part from her background in high-end hospitality design. Alyssa graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2015 and joined our firm in 2023

Arcadia Smails

Studio Director

As an experienced project manager Arcadia brings valued leadership to both individual projects and to her role as Studio Director. Her artful design sense and strong interpersonal and management skills make her a valued contributor to our firm’s operations as a whole. She has worked within the interior design industry for over 20 years and has been with our firm since 2016. Arcadia holds an M.A. in Design History from Bard Graduate Center.

Barbara Rybandt

Billing Manager

As our billing manager, Barbara’s steadfast commitment to detail keeps our business on a steady course. As one of our first employees (joining in 2003), Barbara is a wonderful source of information and support for the entire firm. Barbara is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a B.S. degree in Hotel Administration.

Ben Lacey

Office Manager

Having studied at Leeds College of Music, Ben says everything he learned playing Jazz serves his expertise as our Office Manager: organization, leadership, the capacity to work well with others, great timing, and the ability to improvise! Since joining our firm in 2021 Ben has led a full transformation of our information technology and his daily support across teams keeps our entire organization running smoothly and securely.

Christine Pizzo

Executive Assistant

Christine brings a graceful brand of can-do composure to the daily challenges of managing complex schedules and logistics. Her attention to detail is vital to the success of our client-focused service. She’s been with the firm since 2014.

Colleen Lydon

Project Manager

Colleagues who embody ease and calm in the face of complexity are a particular gift to any organization. Colleen is always ready to tackle a challenge and she inspires trust and respect from both clients and collaborators in the process. She earned degrees at San Francisco State and FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising and has been with the firm since 2013.

Heidi Murphy

Director of Operations

While Heidi’s financial acumen insures the strength of our day-to-day operations, her wealth of business experience empowers our longevity as a firm dedicated to serving clients for the long term. In addition, Heidi’s commitment to the health of our workplace culture and organization helps everyone at the firm do their best work.

Jenna Golden

Senior Designer

Jenna’s great taste, strong management skills and deep familiarity with the full arc of our design process makes her an invaluable part of our team. Jenna graduated from San Francisco State University with B.S degree in Interior Design and has been with the firm since 2007.

Jess Yousef

Studio Assistant

Jess graduated from San Francisco State University with a B.A. in Interior Design in 2023 and we’re thrilled to be working with her at the very start of her career. Her diligence, enthusiasm and aesthetic eye make her a natural fit for our firm and we look forward to nurturing her growth across all aspects of design in the coming years.

Joan Foley

Collections Specialist

With a strong knowledge of art and design history, and a deft ability to liaise with galleries, auction houses, and other design partners, Joan assists in the research and acquisition of antique, vintage, and contemporary works for our projects. Joan received her B.A. from University of Michigan and her M.F.A. in Art History from Columbia University. She was a specialist in the Print Department at Sotheby’s in New York and subsequently worked at antique and fine art galleries in San Francisco before joining our firm in 2012.

Joy Huang

Senior Design Associate

Inspired by her family of artists and her international travels, Joy’s aesthetic eye was nurtured from an early age. She now combines her passion for art, architecture, and design with an equal talent for organization and management. Joy joined our firm in 2020.

Kitty Lau

Procurement Manager

Starting her career in architecture and interior design, Kitty has managed a wide range of projects including high-rise resorts, large residential developments, and individual homes, in the U.S. and overseas. Combining strong organizational skills with a deep knowledge of design and construction, Kitty leads our procurement operations with efficiency and effectiveness. She joined our firm in 2022.

Lisa Alexander

Office Assistant

For anyone visiting or calling our studio, Lisa is the first point of contact with our company. Her warm, caring, and capable presence with clients, colleagues and vendors is an important part of who we are as a team. Lisa joined our firm in 2005.

Luisana Rodriguez

Designer Illustrator

As a technical designer and illustrator dedicated to the craft of fine furniture, Luisana brings an artistic eye to their role as Designer Illustrator. With a B.S. in Architecture from Ibero-American University in Mexico City, as well as a degree in Interior Design from San Diego Mesa College, Luisana brings a deep appreciation for the complex process of creating elegant, well-crafted design. They joined our firm in 2021.

Morgan Nagel

Senior Design Associate

Solid industry experience and a dedication to continuous learning are the foundations of Morgan’s work as a Senior Design Associate. With an equal mix of precision and creativity, Morgan pays attention to all the important details while also infusing her work with artistry and enthusiasm. Morgan holds a B.F.A. in Interior design from the Savannah College of Art & Design and joined our firm in 2019.

Niluka de Pinto

Project Manager

Niluka fosters collaborative relationships with clients, colleagues, and workrooms and she relishes the opportunity to find creative inspiration in every new assignment. In addition, her experience with complex project installations has equipped her to navigate challenges with calm and focus. Niluka graduated from San Francisco State University Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design and she joined our firm in 2014.

Wathana Korm

Accounts Payable / Receivable Specialist

Wathana guides many aspects of the accounts receivable and payable process, including invoicing, payment processing, and reporting. Wathana’s commitment to accuracy and her steady support for project needs have made her a cornerstone of our accounting deparatment since she joined our firm in 2021.

Whitney Murrian

Senior Design Associate

Whitney began working with us as an intern in 2018 and was immediately recognized for her agile and enthusiastic participation in projects. Since then she has grown into a highly effective Senior Design Associate. She holds a B.S. in Interior Design from San Francisco State University.