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Addiction Treatment Specialists

We employ a large staff of committed medical and clinical addiction specialists at our California drug rehab. We have found that having a robust rehabilitation staff helps prevent therapist burnout and compassion fatigue. Our impressive staff-to-client ratio helps us provide individualized and progressive addiction treatment.

CLINICIANS

Tamara LaFontaine

Clinical Director

COUNSELORS

James Tomas

Counselor CADC I

Vicki Harr

Counselor CADC II

Raychel Tyre

Counselor CADC II

Christopher Walters

Counselor CADC II

Andre Avant

Counselor CADC II

Vera Martinez

UR CADC_CAS

Christina Young

UR Manager CADC II

Andrew Osuna

RADT_I

Michael Patterson

RADT_I

Nichole Jeffries

RADT_I

Veronica Paz

SUDCC II

Santenna Wilson

RADT_I

Timi Higginbotham

CADC I

Tami Luna

UR CADC II

CLIENT CARE

Lise Peterson

Client Care Coordinator

Morinda Early

Client Care Coordinator

Rachel Jennings

Client Care Coordinator RADT_I

MEDICAL TEAM

Justin Gatfield

Medical Supervisor

Betty Van Horn

Family Nurse Practitioner

Jordyn Campbell

Medical Assistant

Jesse Herrera

Medical Assistant

LaToyla Fulton

Medical Assistant

Andrea Abarca

Medical Assistant

OPERATIONS TEAM

Melaine Wells

Program Director

EXECUTIVE TEAM

Scott Brown

CEO

Erich Portigal

Vice President

Aaron Earnest

Director of Operations

Josh Hathaway

Director of Placement Specialists

Tamara LaFontaine

LMFT

Clinical Director

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

Clinical oversight of counselors, therapist, and overall client care. Responsible to implement and maintain appropriate clinical guidelines to assure individualized care for all clients.  

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

Growing up a sibling of an addict, I knew that substance use is merely a symptom of a bigger mental health problem. In order to eliminate the addition, one will need to identify, and properly treat their mental health condition. I am able to assist clients in increasing insight, understand, and accept of their mental health condition and help guide them to being productive member of their society.  

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

I enjoy spending time with my family, going to the river/boating. I also enjoy attending sporting events and watching sports on TV. I try to also find time to work out/exercise as part of my self-care. 

Lindsey Norman

APCC (Associate Professional Clinical Counselor)

Therapist

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

I have the opportunity to engage with clients in individual, family and group settings. My passion is to empower and equip clients to create a life they love.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

Passionate about encouraging people to discover their gifts and talents. Passionate about destigmatizing mental health and normalizing therapy as a regular part of selfcare. Passionate at health and wellbeing.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

When I am not at work, I love adventuring and making memories with my husband and three kids, Hiking, going to the beach, traveling, reading, being outside and eating delicious food all bring me joy.

Breanna Curiel

AMFT

AMFT

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

December, 2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

My average day involves providing psychotherapeutic techniques and family system theories to individuals and families for the purpose of treating mental disorders. In addition, I also maintain case files and progress notes. I develop and implement individualized treatment plans addressing addiction, relapse prevention planning, destructive patterns of behavior, mental health, and personal issues. I collect information on clients using interviewing, discussion, observation, and assessment tools. Furthermore, I facilitate group therapy and encourage clients share their struggles and concerns for the opportunity to receive multiple perspectives, encouragement, support, and feedback from other individuals in a confidential and safe environment.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

People who struggle with addiction face discrimination and barriers to getting help. Addiction removes the individual from him/herself. I enjoy reconnecting the individual with him/herself.

Working to help individuals who suffer with mental illness, trauma, or other dynamics and knowing that I made a profound difference in their live and seeing them grow into their potential, is the most rewarding aspect of being an AMFT.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

When I am not working, I enjoy spending time with family; playing video games with my son, camping, going to the beach, swimming, going to amusement parks, dancing, listening to music, doing makeup, going to music festivals and concerts, and hanging out with my friends

Mika Heinonen

AMFT

What year did you begin with Solution Based Treatment?

December, 2022

About Mika

Mika is a former corporate executive whose passion for therapy was ignited by witnessing the profound impact it had on his close friends and extended family. Now holding two masters degrees, he also has extensive experience treating a variety of mental illnesses and working with diverse populations and cultural backgrounds. He has much experience in working within families and couples to aid in the therapeutic process. To create a secure and supportive environment, he uses diverse approaches like CBT, solution-focused, narrative, and EMDR. He tailors his approach to each unique individual he works with, and his dynamic approach includes directness, compassion, and empowerment.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

Beyond his professional pursuits, he finds joy in outdoor activities alongside his family, accompanied by their beloved golden retriever.

Natalie DiManno

APCC

Therapist

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

I began working at Rise Above Treatment on March 10, 2023.

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

As part of an amazing clinical team, I remain in contact with other staff members for various reasons to ensure a standard of care is provided to all clients.  I provide individual therapy to clients, educate and support family members, provide family therapy, and instill hope using a strengths-based approach, and by reminding them of their worth through genuine interactions.  I also facilitate mental health groups to provide education on the nature of co-occurring disorders, and assist clients in developing the skills and tools to improve their overall mental health, relationships, communication, self-esteem, and daily functioning.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

My passion for this field comes from a personal history with addiction, and loved ones who never made it to recovery.  My deepest desire is to effect positive change in this world by walking with those on their healing journey, and witnessing powerful transformations of the mind, body, and soul.  My primary goal is to foster healing through authentic human connection, and by providing compassionate support on their journey to create a more effective and meaningful life.   

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

I fully enjoy living life to its fullest! I love traveling, listening to live music, bowling, practicing my faith daily, spending time with my family in California and Back East, and loving on my Malamute Watt’s who is a handful to say the least.

Justin Gatfield

LVN III

Medical Supervisor

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

On average my day consists of reviewing assessments, coordinating care for our clients, providing education to clients on various topics, oversight of all medical staff at residential detox facilities providing direction to ensure delivery of care meets the expectations of clients, and act as the liaison for our medical provider.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

My passion for addiction treatment and recovery stems from my own personal history. I’ve worked with countless individuals in the many years of working in substance abuse treatment that my passion has only grown, watching the change occur for so many on a daily basis is both humbling and inspiring.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

My free time is spent mostly with my two young sons Dax and Samuel, we enjoy camping and the outdoors, traveling and seeing new places. We really enjoy trying new stuff, so it is often that we are out and about seeking adventure.

Betty Van Horn

Family Nurse Practitioner

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2023

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

House visits in the AM, Seeing PHP clients in the afternoon, and House visits in the late afternoon/evening. In these visits, I offer medical services, mental health services, and medication-assisted treatments for addiction.

 

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

Working on the street with people experiencing homelessness, it was obvious that our social services were inadequate at treating substance abuse and mental health. The county services only wanted to help those who wanted to help themselves. They did not consider that people without housing did not have the capacity or resources to be able to go to outpatient services or mental health appointments. So, I got my buprenorphine waiver and started training in psychiatry so that I could help people where they were.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

My favorite thing to do is spend time with my family. The hobbies I enjoy with my kids include decorating cupcakes, cookies, caramel apples, and cake pops. My favorite place is San Diego, with SeaWorld being my most frequently visited location.

Jordyn Campbell

Medical assistant certification

Medical Assistant

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

Looking after our client’s medical health by vitals, medications, assessments, and advocating for anything else they may need while in our care.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

Being a child of an addict, this job gave e healing as well as a better understanding of the disease. Watching the progress made here is very rewarding/exciting.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

Enjoying time with friends, family and my two dogs, Jet-skiing in the summer, binge watching new shows, drawing and finding new music to listen to.

Jesse Herrera

Certified Medical Assistant

Medical Assistant

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

Administering medications, taking vitals, care and comfort of clients and medical assessments.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

I entered the medical field to help people, it is fulfilling to watch client’s complete treatment and transform into the people they want to be.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

I enjoy spending time with my wife and two boys. Going to concerts, movies and riding roller coasters.

LaToyla Fulton

Medical Assistant

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2022

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

Putting clients first, team player, rounds, passing meds, checking emails.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

Being able to help someone overcome their addictions, one of the hardest things in life, it’s very rewarding to be part of their recovery.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

Spending time with family.

Andrea Abarca

Certified Medical Assistant

Medical Assistant

What year did you begin with Rise Above Treatment?

2019

What does your average day look like as a member of the team?

Observe medications pass to the clients, check control medications and count, check with the clients and assist any medical issues or concerns, observe rounds, refill medications if needed, call new orders in when needed. Obtained daily UDS.

Why are you passionate about addiction treatment and recovery?

I like to see the difference in the client’s health and attitude from when they first come in to when they move to PHP.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

Spend time with my family, go to the movies