Staff Page 

Apex Recovery is proud to offer some of the finest physicians, psychologists, and licensed professionals in the alcohol and drug rehab, clinical field. Our rehabilitation administration staff is hand selected for their ability to provide and promote an integrative treatment approach and is ready to help. All of our clinicians are highly vetted and must have high levels of expertise in working with dual diagnosed clientele. Our administrators adjust each rehabilitation program to fit the needs of our patients, which sets us apart from other rehabilitation facilities. No matter what kind of disabilities or addictions you might be facing, our trained and professional staff members are here for you.

With literally decades of addiction experience, and countless clinical hours spent researching, training and treating dual diagnosis issues, our team of administrators has made us one of the best rehab facilities in San Diego County. We believe every member of our team is reliant on others perspectives and insight. We treat every participant with respect and dignity, not from a place of superiority or judgment.

Our clinical staff is tireless in their dedication to wholeness, health, and excellence. Our constant drive for knowledge, continuing education, and goal of field, participation as leaders in the recovery community, allows our Apex rehabilitation administration team to be sought after and exceptional at treating not just an addiction, but the whole individual. This allows for growth in many ways, as each participant finds their own path to meaningful recovery through our council while battling a substance abuse addiction.

Dr. Matthew J. Bruhin, Ph.D, LMFT, RAS – APEX Rehab CEO

Dr. Matthew J. BruhinDr. Matthew Bruhin is the Chief Executive Officer of APEX Recovery. Along with Co-founder Fred Bowen, Dr. Bruhin utilized his experience in the creation of high-end rehabs to construct a facility that was cutting-edge and affordable, yet lacked nothing. His vision, eye for detail and desire to lead have created an unparalleled vision for treating additive illness coupled with mental and emotional disorders. Dr. Bruhin treats every staff member and participant like family and hopes to bring his clinical and administrative vision to many

Dr. Bruhin is a State of California Board of Behavioral Sciences, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist as well as an Addiction Specialist registered by the Breining Institute. Dr. Bruhin earned his Doctorate in Addiction Psychology, has a Master of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology, and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology, with a Minor in Addictive Disorders. Additionally he holds many other certifications and has tens of thousands of hours of clinical and training experience.

Dr. Bruhin has a diverse clinical training background, working in the mental health field for over 12 years. He specializes in the treatment of addiction and has specialized experience and clinical training in the treatment of prescription addiction, sexual addiction and gambling addiction. He works with many individuals and families ranging from the chronically, mentally ill, to high-level professionals, professional athletes, executives, and Hollywood film producers and TV personalities. He has developed his own specialized and effective techniques for the treatment of addiction and chemical dependency.

Dr. Bruhin loves to write, blog, and he appears regularly on network TV as a leader in the addiction field. He has worked with clients from A&E’s hit TV show Intervention, as well as the Tyra Show. Dr. Bruhin also performs local TV segments in order to get the public educated about addiction, and to break down the stigma of mental health issues. Dr. Bruhin balances his passion for work with the love of his family, enjoyment of travel, and his vintage Star Wars collection, which can be viewed in his private office.

Guillermo Lara, MIBA, SHRM-CP Human Resources Director

Guillermo Lara, MIBA, SHRM-CP Human Resources Director - apex recovery

Guillermo Lara, Director of Human Resources, is a resourceful and goal-oriented professional with 14+ years of human resource management experience. The last few years have been in the Healthcare industry, focusing on building and maintaining the infrastructure for multi-location HR functions. His experience includes planning, performance management, staffing, risk management, credentialing, employment contract negotiations, employee benefits, compensation, payroll, and strategic management in alignment with business growth.

Originally from Tijuana, Mexico. Guillermo holds a master’s degree in International Business Administration with a focus on Strategic Management. In 2019-20, he served on the board of directors of Arts for Learning San Diego.

Guillermo has a loving wife and a 15-year-old daughter. In his spare time, you can find him grilling for his family.
Guillermo identifies with the vision statement of Apex Recovery and he is committed to embracing the culture and carrying a strong conviction in working together to create an environment that continues to foster breakthrough innovation enabling the mission of Apex Recovery.

Dr. Christian Small, MD, ABPN, ABFM, ABPM

Dr. Christian Small, MD, ABPN, ABFM, ABPM

Dr. Small received his medical degree at the University of Hawaii. He completed his medical residency in Psychiatry and Family Medicine at UCSD.

He is board certified in Psychiatry, Addiction Medicine, and Family Medicine.

Dr. Small is passionate about bringing quality care to patients suffering with addiction.

Dr. Thomas E. D. M.D. – Psychiatrist

Apex Recovery LogoDr. Thomas is is an outside psychiatric consultant for APEX Rehab and a board-certified psychiatrist in San Diego. A graduate of Stanford Medical School, Dr. Thomas has dedicated years to working with a large variety of clientele with many different psychiatric needs.

Over the last few years, Dr. Thomas has specialized in both child and adolescent psychiatry; yet he never lost his passion for helping those who suffer from mood disorders and addiction.

Dr. Thomas’ strong background and knowledge of working with adults with mood disorders and other mental illness help him work with clients that have deeper issues, that can result in drug or alcohol dependency.

Apart from being certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Dr. Thomas is an active advocate for the LGBT community in San Diego. He provides training to other medical and clinical professionals in working with LGBT youth.

His diverse skill set and dedication to the betterment of people in the community make him an understanding and compassionate asset to the APEX Rehab team.

Aily N. – Intake Director

Apex Recovery LogoMy name is Aily, Intake Director. I am a San Diego native, born and raised, and have over nine years of substance abuse treatment experience and knowledge. I take great pride in what I do.

My goal is to always provide exceptional, compassionate care to our clients while thoroughly explaining what APEX Recovery can offer. I have a deep passion for each client that contacts APEX. I have a trauma-informed care background and a strong motivational interviewing skill set.

I love to evoke a client’s inner belief system to help them move through the stages of change. I am grateful to be a part of such an amazing team!

Mila K. – MFT Trainee

Mila K - Apex RecoveryMila is a certified Substance Abuse Counselor and has been practicing in the field of Addiction Treatment for eight years. She has extensive experience providing direct client care to people in a variety of treatment settings. Mila is in the process of obtaining her Masters Degree in Marriage & Family Therapy and is completing her clinical hours at Apex Recovery.

Mila believes that addiction is a complex disorder, and while it’s symptoms can be devastating, the root causes are often found beyond the surface. Her treatment approach is thus focused on identifying and uncovering the underlying causes of behavior and targeting them. Mila’s areas of special interest are complex trauma, interpersonal relationships, and self-esteem work. She believes in a trauma-informed approach that utilizes evidence-based practices to ultimately cultivate self-love. Recovery is a great part of Mila’s life. She believes that recovery is a lifestyle, which involves growth in every area of one’s life, and this belief is reflected in her counseling style.



Eliud F. – AOD Counselor

Eliud F. - AOD CounselorHello my name is Eli. I’m a sober coach and currently working towards my masters degree in counseling. I was also a psychologist in Mexico with a masters degree in criminal justice.

I have over 10 years of experience working with individuals and families. I have helped to support and develop treatments for depression, anxiety, phobias, and trauma. I am also experienced in working with anxiety and depression in children and adolescents. My goal is to assist clients to discover their best self as the most effective pathway to happiness, wholeness, and a future filled with success. At Apex I strive to support clients to heal and transform the past by creating a safe and non-judgmental environment to explore underlying issues they are experiencing.

Brandon P. – Music & Art Therapist

Brandon P. – Music & Art Therapist

Brandon is a singer/songwriter from San Diego. He has been the key songwriter for Kut U Up and Yovee for over 15 years as well as toured with Green Day, Blink 182 and Jimmy Eat World. Brandon has written scores for many surf and skate films in the action sports industry premiered around the world for Fuel T.V. and E.S.P.N. Sport. He also starred in the documentary “Riding in Vans With Boys”, a full-length film about life on the road of an arena tour.

Brandon had fun with the party lifestyle until it finally caught up with him in 2008. He was resistant to recovery in the beginning because he was under the impression that he needed to be “loaded” in order to create good music. Since getting sober, he has spent his time starting a new band, Indigo Mystics. His hopes are that this shows artists also struggling with the same impression, that it is possible to be inspired without the use of any substance. Brandon also has Studied Core Energetics at Radical Aliveness Institute of Southern California.

Madison N. RADT-1 – Somatic Practitioner

Madison N. RADT-1 – Somatic Practitioner

Madison has worked as an artist and instructor since 2011. Madison began her career teaching art instruction at various schools and businesses and showing her art in galleries such as the San Diego Art Institute. Upon getting into recovery herself, Madison began developing a curriculum to utilize her knowledge of recovery and art to help others in need.

Madison has always believed that art plays a vital role in the support of addiction recovery. Ms. Nees works at various treatment centers around San Diego, facilitating groups that provide the space for recovering addicts and alcoholics to express themselves through art.

Amelie R. Yoga Therapist

Amelie R. Yoga Therapist

Amelie has been teaching yoga for seven years and practicing for ten years.  Amelie has experience teaching a variety of formats including vinyasa, yin yoga, and sculpt.  Amelie was inspired to teach after experiencing health complications from her type 1 diabetes.  Diagnosed at the early age of 9 years old, she began to experience complications and loss of vision in her mid-20’s.  After three years of coping with being temporarily legally blind, she knew it was imperative to create a lifestyle change that would help calm her mind, teach her healthy coping mechanisms, and promote a longer, healthier, happier life.
After practicing for three years, she noticed a lightness, a feeling of being whole again, and a connection to self and others that she knew was her obligation to pass on.  Amelie completed her yoga sculpt certification in 2013, continued her education by completing her yin yoga certification in 2014, and graduated from a 200-hour certified teacher training in 2015.  Amelie studied under Katie Burke, Master Motivator and International Yoga instructor.  When Amelie steps onto her mat to facilitate, she strives to create a space and practice where people can be who they are.  For the time they are with her, they can forget about disease, pain, self-sabotaging thoughts and are able to connect to the power of their breath.  Amelie shows up authentic, genuine and open and encourages and empowers her students to do the same.

Kinsey O. – Reiki Master, Sound Healer

Kinsey O. - Reiki Master, Sound Healer

Kinsey is a local San Diego Reiki Master and Sound Healer. After completing her B.S. Biochemistry and Cell Biology at UC San Diego, she specialized in biomarker and bioactive molecule analysis and studied functional health coaching in her early career. Since then, she has transitioned to teaching meditation classes and a variety of alternative healing modalities. She is currently working to bridge the gap between science and spirituality by bringing holistic healing to medical and laboratory settings.

Kinsey connects ancient healing technologies including sound baths, energy medicine and deep meditation to functional healing to create a sense of holistic wellness. Her sound bath experiences are used to tune the brain into alpha and theta brainwave states to deepen meditation, reduce stress and anxiety, and create an internal state for healing and regeneration throughout the body.


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