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. 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.

Colleen B. – Director of Operations

Colleen joins APEX Recovery as the Director of Operations, bringing with her over 20 years of operational experience. Prior to joining APEX Colleen served in both the Performance Excellence and Facilities, Management and Development groups for Sharp HealthCare. In partnership with the executive management team at Sharp Grossmont Hospital, Colleen managed the Planetree Certification process from inception through successful certification at the Gold Level for Excellence in Person-Centered Care. Colleen believes in the work smarter not harder philosophy and found her passion for process improvement as a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt. Colleen earned her MBA from Pepperdine University and a B.S in Communications from Cal Poly, Pomona. Outside of work Colleen spends her free time cooking, travelling (pre-March 2020) and spending time with her husband, their three children, and the family dog Hope.

 

Daniel C. – Human Resources Manager

Mr. Daniel is a bilingual MBA professional with extensive experience in directing, managing, developing and performing logistic operations in private and government organizations. He has extensive experience in human resources specifically in the areas of recruiting, selecting, hiring and training.

His experience in the private sector includes organizations that managed health, insurance, benefits, employee retention and corporate casualties. In the government sector he worked with many State and Federal government agencies in California and Texas.

Daniel exhibits professionalism and diplomacy when explaining policies and procedures of different benefits programs to internal and external clients. His leadership and dependability in resolving internal and external customer problems always focuses on aligning the resolution of current organizational policies.

He enjoys spending quality time with family members and close friends and he has a passion for movies. He likes to travel internationally or simply hit the road for a weekend getaway.

Dr. Aimie Apigian, MD, MS, MPH – Medical Director

Dr. Aimie Apigian is a Board-Certified Preventive Medicine Physician who has been working in Addiction Medicine for the last 5 years and trauma and attachment issues for longer. She earned her medical degree at Loma Linda University, has a Masters in Biochemistry, a Masters in Public Health, and then trained 3 years as a general surgeon changing to Addiction Medicine. She attributes her career change to Miguel, who arrived in her home as a 4 year foster son and then who she then adopted. Finding no real solutions in conventional medicine and therapies, she threw herself into understanding how to rewire early childhood trauma. She is now an Addiction Medicine physician who works through an integrative approach combining functional medicine, trauma-based therapies and bio-hacking the body’s natural survival systems to help patients move from addictions, disease and insecurities to happy and healthy.

Dr. Thomas E. D. M.D. – Psychiatrist

Dr. 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.

Makenna M. RN, BSN – Nurse Manager

Makenna was born and raised in Southern California. She identified her passion for helping others young and participated in medical missions trips and outreach programs before attending Point Loma Nazarene University to become a Registered Nurse. She graduated with a Bachelors of Science and Nursing and worked as a Cardiac Nurse at a local San Diego hospital.

Makenna is passionate about working with those in recovery as well as those who may be struggling with mental illness. She worked for Apex as Registered Nurse and was soon promoted to Nurse Supervisor. She strives every day to use her compassion and empathy to bring positivity and light to the courageous, yet vulnerable, journey of recovery.

 

Katrena A. – Residential Technician Supervisor

Holly R, RADT – Residential Technician Supervisor

Holly was born and raised in Montana.  She moved to California in 2005 to pursue her graduate studies at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena where she received her Master’s in Theology and a Master’s in Recovery Ministry.  She has a deep understanding of the benefits of a holistic approach to recovery-focused upon mind, body, and spirit.  She is currently a Registered Drug and Alcohol Technician having completed her course work at UCSD for Drug and Alcohol Counseling.

She is passionate about holding space for those struggle not only with addictions of all kinds but the struggles of mental health as well.  Holly lives by the belief, “There is always hope in recovery.”

 

Karli – Office Manager

Karli recently moved to San Diego and is a student at San Diego City College. She plans to transfer to a University in the fall to earn her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and eventually attend graduate school to earn her Masters, and Marriage and Family Therapy License.

Karli’s motivated to help others overcome the challenges that they face. On her free time, she enjoys trying new coffee places and spending quality time with her three sisters.

 

 

 

Victoria D. – Administrative Assistant

Victoria recently moved to California and has loved becoming a resident of beautiful San Diego. She has a dedicated Administrative background and a special interest in rehabilitation. Victoria is passionate about patient’s success and personal growth. Her goal is to provide a warm and welcoming experience for every client that enters through our door. In her free time, Victoria enjoys spending time with her nearby family and taking her dog out for adventures at the park. 

 

 

 

Tatiana, AMFT, M.A. – Program Therapist

Tatiana is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist at Apex Recovery. She received her B.A. in Psychology from Loyola Marymount University and completed her M.A. in Counseling at National University.

Tatiana has over 7 years of experience in the mental health field, which includes severe mental illness, addiction, developmental disabilities as well as individual and couples’ counseling. Tatiana strives to create a safe environment for her clients. She adores animals and enjoys movies, music, photography, yoga, and spending time with loved ones.

 

 

Savannah S. AMFT, M.A. – Program Therapist

Hello! My name is Savannah I have graduated with my master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at Alliant International University. I’m currently an Associate Marriage Family Therapist working towards my full licensure. I have been fortunate enough to be part of the APEX team while in graduate school and currently during post-grad.

As a therapist, my goal is to support clients in feeling heard and supported and work collaboratively towards establishing coping skills that help support daily functioning and increase self-compassion, self-esteem and mindfulness. I welcome clients with a compassion-based approach and with empathy towards struggles and resilience experienced. I have a lot of experience in using DBT, CBT and ACT therapy modalities. I have gained a great amount of experience with clients with dual diagnoses, being substance abuse diagnoses and mental health diagnoses.

Additionally, I strive to support clients in finding the underlying reasons towards maladaptive behaviors and mental health challenges. I believe that it’s paramount to ask for help and get through life hurdles with support and perspective from mental health professionals, everyone deserves to process their experiences with an unbiased individual.

Vittorio R. AMFT, APCC – Program Therapist

Vittorio was born and raised in San Diego, California. Vittorio received a triple bachelors of arts degree from the University of California at San Diego, a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership, and a double Masters of Counseling Psychology in Marriage and Family Therapy and Professional Clinical Counselor. He is also a Certified Hypnotherapist. Vittorio was a college instructor for over 10 years, and served 20 years with the San Diego Sheriff’s Office where one of his specializations was in the Psychiatric Security Units of both the men’s and women’s jails. Vittorio is currently completing a PhD in academic and counseling psychology, with a focus on the impact of the gut microbiome on the manifestations of various mental illnesses and conditions. As the first generation born in the United States on his paternal side, Vittorio is very aware of cultural differences and needs, and he intuitively understands the importance of cultural awareness, as well the nuances of operating within a dominant culture while being raised within the cultural parameters of the familial country of origin. Vittorio speaks French and Italian as well as his native English. 

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 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 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 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.

Christopher C. – Tai Chi Instructor

Chris has a B. A. degree in Education from USD concentration in Psychology & Human Development. He has been training for past 18 years and achieved professional certifications in APEX, AFFA, ACE, NA Sports Medicine, Weight Management & Lifestyle Consultant, CPR certified, Bosu Master, Senior Fitness, Golf & Tennis Fitness, Kick Box/Kung Fu, Tai Chi, Qi-Gong, Meditation. He is a Corrective Exercise Specialist: pain relief, injury prevention, and rehabilitation to performance.

 

 

Jean Pierre M. M. Msc., C.Ht. Msc., C.Ht. – Zen Master

Internationally known, for over 55 years Jean M’s vast expertise, knowledge and guiding principles have changed the lives of thousands who have benefited by his workshops, classes and private sessions. He is as a pioneer in the mind/body field and has been affiliated with renowned doctors, hospitals and health spas throughout the US and abroad teaching workshops and seminars focused on mind-body-spirit education, Eastern philosophy, pain management, addiction, meditation, tai chi, yoga, martial arts and much more.

Jean M is a Grand Master Teacher of Yoga, Tai Chi, Meditation, Fitness and Martial Arts and is one of those rare teachers to both inspire and guide students and clients of all ages to the fruition of their personal and professional goals. He is also a Behavioral & Spiritual Therapist, Certified Hypnotherapist, Certified Medical Hypnotherapist and Hypno-anaesthesiologist specializing in Pain Management.

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