Elliot Horowitz, M.A., LMFT
Clinical & Family Programs Director
Elliot is a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist (LMFT) for over 25 years. As a lead therapist & Family Programs Supervisor, he brings a wide array of psychotherapy modalities and expertise in the field of alcohol and drug addiction treatment and recovery to Hillside Laguna’s expert team of clinicians. Elliot is gifted with very unique psychotherapy techniques that enable him to quickly connect and earn trust with his patients and drill down to the root causes of addiction, relapses, and other illnesses. He understand family dynamics well.
Elliot has become highly experienced in individual and group counseling, co-occurring disorders, dual diagnosis such as substance abuse, trauma, grief, loss, mental health disorders. Elliot is the founder of Avant-Grade Community Counseling Center serving hundreds of substance abuse patients in Orange and Riverside Counties. He had oversight over the Center’s clinical team. Elliot holds a Masters’ Degree from the Phillips Graduate Institute. Elliot has embraced Martial Arts. When he is not offering psychotherapy he is busy maintaining two Black Belts in Martial Art. Elliot is a strong believer that treating the client without effective family participation falls short in maintaining sobriety.
Laura Pratto, M.A., LMFT
Laura Pratto a highly experienced and seasons psychotherapist with over 25 years of hands on work in the addiction and substance abuse field. Laura recognizes that a healthy and a productive life begins with embracing everyday with positive energy and motivation. Laura holds a master degree in psychology from Argosy University and logged more than 4000 hours of clinical work where she developed a process to motivate and take the patient by first deconstructing identities, utilizing data from various clinical surveys to both provide insight and illuminate the root cause of maladaptive behavior.
Then she supports and positively reinforces patients’ lagging skills with evidence-based psycho education and therapy, while patients begin mentally integrating and enacting new skills in the safety of our treatment environment. After reaching a fair level of satisfaction with the patient, Laura moves into a coaching role as she collaborates with patients to reconstruct new identities utilizing creative problem solving, life planning and seamlessly launching patients into their life’s purpose. “Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, patients are renewed” “No grit. No pearl.” Rumi As a certified Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), Laura is a certified PEERs Social Skills Treatment Provider from UCLA, and trained on CBT, DBT, and motivational Interviewing.
Shannon Kilgore, M.A., LMFT
Director, Diagnosis & Assessment
Shannon is a highly experienced Substance Use Disorder practitioner, bringing unmatched professional skills in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and other psychotherapy modalities. Shannon’s treatment motto “How to take a client to a happier and a more productive life”. As Director of Diagnosis & Assessment at Hillside Laguna , Shannon brings a wealth of experience in proper and confidential evaluation of professional clients. Shannon drives the process with specific goals in mind to reach a conclusion of whether a disorder exists, based strictly on standard criteria.
“My goals and objectives at Hillside Laguna is to be the best at what I do” Shannon often emphasizes. Shannon holds a Masters of Science in Counseling from California State University since 2008, and a State of California Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (LMFT).
Debra Sussman, M.A., AMFT
Program Clinical Coordinator
Debra is a capable clinician, as Clinical Coordinator at Hillside Laguna she is responsible for assembling clinical assessments, new patient diagnoses, clinical history for weekly clinical updates. Debra received some of her training at Harvard Medical School specializing in Evidence Based practices in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Collaborative Problem Solving and Mind Body Medicine.
Debra is a researcher in the emerging field of Psycho-Neuro-Immunology, Trauma Informed Therapy, Addiction Medicine and is committed to the highest quality of mental health care. For over 15 years, Debra has been the Executive Director for The Mind Body Institute for Women’s Health, Substance Abuse Counselor, probation department, military and individual, group counseling. Debra serves on the Board of Directors for Greater Orange County CHADD, and California Marriage Family Therapist Orange County chapter. A frequent speaker at corporate, medical and nurses conferences and educational in-service
Robin Giovanna Jones, M.A.
Somatic Psychotherapist & Trauma Expert
Robin is gentle, highly cognizant, and acutely aware of most causes of trauma. She possesses the most effective psychotherapy methods for recovery and possible total cure.
As a recovering Post Traumatic Syndrome Disorder Commonly know as PTSD, Robin is armed with deep knowledge of the precise psychological and real sources of pain. Robin is a practitioner of yoga and Buddhism for 25 years, and an avid vegetable gardener.
She holds a Masters Degree in Psychology and finishing well over 3000 hours of hands on practice for the California License and fulfillment of a Doctorate of Psychology Robin joined the Hillside Laguna clinical team in its quest to help addicts and substance abuse patients. In dealing with trauma pain, Robin brings to Hillside very unique and special expertise, She addresses and tackles trauma with patients combining well established EMDR techniques and Somatic psychotherapy. Robin has become renowned in Somatic Psychotherapy with unmatched skills set neuroscience-based for overcoming chronic, severe anxiety and panic. "I cannot believe the fulfillment it brings me to help others not to have to suffer" Robin often says. She adds, "I have seen patients who were victims of sexual assault, physical abuse, crime, loss of close and loved ones, and returning from war torn regions of the world".
Ana Paula Mauro, M.A., LMFT
EMDR Psychotherapist & Trauma Expert
U.S Army Veteran
Ana adds tremendous value to Hillside Laguna trauma assessment clinical team. She is an EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessed) Psychotherapist certified. Early in her career as a U.S Army veteran, Ana became very familiar of the root causes of PTSD, the most common and most sever form of trauma. Highly motivated and disciplined soldier. Ana successfully applied Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for the treatment of trauma and mental health disorders. She has a great sense of the specific modalities in applying effective trauma therapy techniques. She embraces the profound connection between substance abuse and trauma.
The American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association, Department of Defense, Veteran’s Administration, insurance providers, and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies recognize EMDR as one of the most effective treatment for PTSD. Ana is fluent in English, Portuguese, and Spanish, and holds a Masters degree in Family Life Counseling from Webster University, and working on becoming a licensed MFT.
Daniel J. Headrick, MD - Medical Expert - IV NAD Therapy
Hillside Laguna employs the expertise of Dr. Daniel Headrick to assess and perform NAD IV Therapy
Daniel Headrick, M.D. is Hillside Laguna Medical Expert on NAD IV Therapy. Dr. Headrick recently served as the Medical Director at Mission Hospital in Laguna Beach, California for 8 years and prior to that was the Medical Director of the Hoag Hospital Chemical Dependency Center, Newport Beach, California for 11 years.
Dr. Headrick has achieved remarkable success in assessing and performing NAD IV Therapy for many patients whose lives have changed for good. As a Medical Expert in his field, Dr. Headrick oversees the stabilization of each patient for sound transition to relevant levels of care and withdrawal from alcohol and other substances.
Dr. Headrick Received his medical degree from the University of California, Los Angeles Medical School. (UCLA). He is distinguished by his post graduate certification from the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) in 1988. Dr. Headrick is an associate professor at the University of California, Irvine Medical School.
Fitness Program Director
Kardena Pauza is a Certified Personal trainer. She has been expert in fitness training, flexibility, corrective exercises for a balanced body, weight loss, health, wellness, and nutrition for over 10 years. She was awarded & crowned Ms. America Fitness 2006-2007 for her commitment to Health, Fitness and community involvement. She holds two of the nation’s top training certifications from the National Academy of Sports Medicine and ISSA. She competed in 2010 taking 1st runner up in the West Coast Classic NPC Bodybuilding- Bikini Division Competition and 5th place in the Cal State NPC Bodybuilding- Bikini Division Competition launching her to compete in the USA’s National Bikini Competition.
Kardena is a public speaker and motivator, has conducted over 200 workshops on secrets to longevity, and proper nutrition. She started her career as a personal trainer at Sports Club/LA in Irvine, California (currently known as Equinox) in 2002 for 8 years. Kardina is very passionate about fitness. She loves to make a difference in everyone she touches from better fitness to better eating habits. She is truly a pleasure to work with a great asset to Hillside Laguna holistic team. When she is not at Hillside Laguna is taking care of her two adorable toddlers. .. "