Powerlist Creative 30 : Diane Thorsen Principal Hospitality Design Director Gensler
Diane Thorsen, a graduate of the University of Johannesburg’s Faculty of Art, Design, and Architecture, advanced her studies to include sustainability and is a LEED and WELL Building Accredited professional.
Thorsen is a Registered Interior Designer within the IIDA and serves on the advisory board of the American University in Dubai. Her designs for international workspaces, hospitality, healthcare, and mixed-use developments, in particular, demonstrates meticulous attention to detail, a passion for local art, and high-quality craftsmanship.
The Coronavirus pandemic and its impact on global wellness and the economy has given Thorsen the opportunity to explore her
expertise in designing for wellness. Amid the outbreak of pandemic, Thorsen has completed the design of two high-end international restaurants, a luxury hotel restoration, the headquarters of a private investment firm, and Gensler’s new office in Alserkal Avenue. Thorsen also leads Gensler Middle East’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiative, supporting the firm’s mission to raise awareness, shape and lead diversity, equity, and inclusion in the Middle East.
Thorsen’s leadership focusses on increasing diversity within the Gensler team, as design is a universal language that knows no boundaries. Her team also looks to actively create job opportunities by investing in the Middle East, engaging with local universities, and supporting educators, local suppliers, and local initiatives.