Design Dialogue with Dr. Ashley Kauffman
Can you imagine a doctor’s office that felt more like a home? Well, Dr. Ashley Kaufman of Rushmore Family Chiropractic in Rapid City did. When her practice grew beyond the confines of her previous office on Mt. Rushmore Road, she went searching for a new location. She found it at 807 Columbus Street. Built in 1915, this two-story building was originally a house. Converted to commercial space, it was owned for several years by a local attorney who officed out of the first floor and rented out the four offices on the second.
Dr. Kaufman purchased this building in 2016 and then she and her husband Josh, a handyman, set about converting the building for their needs. Choosing an already-repurposed space was intentional. “I didn’t know how it was gonna be a chiropractic office, but that’s Josh’s realm – that’s why I married a handyman!”
Selecting a 100+ year old building as her office wasn’t without challenges, including the need to add insulation. She and Josh also broke up the open first floor to create separate exam rooms, a front lobby and a hallway between them. The end result is a cozy, nest-like cluster of offices that allows patients a private session with their chiropractor.
A fan of rustic design, Dr. Kaufman loves the original fireplace in her exam room, the bay windows and built-in cabinets. There is a lot of natural wood throughout the building, including the second floor. Currently, Rushmore Family Chiropractic’s on-staff massage therapist, Carole Ann, uses one room upstairs to treat clients. Another room is intermittently used as a nursery (both Dr. Kaufman and Dr. Becky Beilstein have babies under one year old). Dr. Ashley also admitted that on long days, sometimes she sneaks into one of the upper offices to take a nap!
Assistant Lucy manages the front desk area, in the back (they offer street parking and lot parking behind the building, with a handicap-accessible ramp leading from the front toward the main entrance). An essential-oil diffuser creates a calm waiting room, and patients who arrive early can lie on the water massage table while waiting.
It was important to Dr. Kaufman that her patients be received in a space that actually facilitates their healing process. There are no white coats, glaring overhead lights or long waits at Rushmore Family Chiropractic. Their hard work paid off - in summer 2018, they won the Beautification of Rapid City award from the Chamber of Commerce!
We also had to ask Dr. Ashley, a native of the Rapid City area, what she considered the best-designed space in the Black Hills. With a nostalgic smile, she responded “The Alpine Inn. When I was young, my grandmother gave my mom a Jon Crane photograph of the Alpine Inn, during winter. It reminds me of home. That’s the Black Hills to me. Plus,” she laughed, “Their food is just that freaking good!”
Learn more at: https://rushmorefamilychiropractic.com/