A life full of

About Us

Northridge Detox Center

It can be challenging to find the right treatment option for you. Whether you are facing mental health challenges, addiction, eating disorders, or other issues, we can help you find the best possible treatment in your area. Northridge Detox Center is a trusted treatment center in the Los Angeles community, we have extensively vetted and trained staff, clinicians, nurses and doctors under our company staff. Los Angeles Detox strives to be the best Addiction Treatment/Dual Diagnosis Treatment provider in the Southern California area.

Our Values

We believe that each person should receive the best treatment possible. To do that, we need to make sure your treatment plan is catered to your personal needs. Every individual is different, and their challenges may affect them differently as well. No one treatment plan will work for everyone.

When making the decision to commit to treatment at Northridge Detox Center, you should be sure that you are getting treatment that has been designed primarily around your needs. You are an individual with challenges and feelings unique to you, and your treatment must reflect that.

Northridge Detox Center


History, credentials, and more

Mayra Bonilla

Head Nurse

My name is Mayra Bonilla and I am the Licensed Nurse at Northridge Detox. I have extensive experience in the healthcare industry providing direct patient care in other roles for over 17 years. I was highly motivated after nursing school to learn more about drug addiction and treatment to be able to provide the best care to a population struggling with addiction and other mental health disorders. I am fulfilling my passion and purpose which allows me to help patients from all walks of life with such a difficult life long disease and the changes it brings. In my role, my primary responsibilities include responding to all medical and nursing needs of patients which includes medication administration, pharmacy & physician communication, patient education, assessments and follow-up and responding to medical emergencies. Part of my role also includes continuing staff education, supervision, support and follow up to ensure we are providing care that exceeds standards in providing a healing and safe environment at all times. I am part of a collaborative and cohesive team that strives to provide each patient with a smooth transition into detox and thereafter. I believe every life matters, every story is unique, and everyone deserves as many chances as needed to live a fulfilled life, so I ensure that every day I handle my job with careful attention.

Melinda Drake

Clinical Director

Melinda Drake, LCSW, LISW-CP/AP, joined the family of AM Health as a Clinical Director for LA Detox. She has more than 20 years of experience as a social worker clinician, program director, clinical director, executive director and CEO. Throughout her career, she has always served others with compassion and care. Trained in trauma-focused CBT, EMDR and certified in brainspotting, Drake is committed to bringing evidenced-based and cutting-edge treatment to Northridge. She is a licensed clinical social Worker in California, New York and Hawaii and is a licensed independent social worker for clinical practice and advanced practice in South Carolina. A lifelong learner, Drake earned her Master’s in social work in 1997, Doctorate degree in business administration in 2000 and master’s degree in computer resources and information management in 2003.

Dr. Siri Khalsa

Medical Director

Dr Sirisat Khalsa is a board certified Addictionologist with over a decade of experience as a specialist in detoxing and treating patients with alcohol and substance use disorders. As a graduate of USC medical school and Harbor UCLA residency, she spent 10 years a Family Practitioner before discovering her passion for caring for patients struggling with addictions. Her approach is to safely detox patients as comfortably as possible and to then focus on caring for the anxiety and depression and other mental health issues that typically accompany substance use disorders while simultaneously crafting plans to sustain long term sobriety. Dr Khalsa has extensive experience working with patients at all levels of recovery from detox, residential and outpatient.

Almira Agosto


Almira Agosto is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and Somatic Experience Practitioner. In addition, she has a Masters of Divinity degree from Claremont School of Theology. Almira is committed to creating safe and affirming places in all types of settings, and her clinical experiences include working in public schools, community clinics, homeless and domestic violence shelters, and premier residential dual-diagnosis settings. Almira maintains a private practice in Thousand Oaks where she specializes in working with people who have survived personal and service-related trauma, including First Responders and Veterans. Almira’s style of providing individual therapy and facilitating groups is based on her belief that everyone has the capacity to heal, given the right opportunity, encouragement, and support. Almira’s purpose is to honor each person’s journey by helping them find that courage to BE themselves by sprinkling a little “You got this!” along the way.

Shelly Steven


Shelley Stevens has been committed to and involved in recovery work for almost 20 years. She became a certified counselor in 2005. Her counseling style has been described as empathetic and strong. She has a lot of respect for people challenged with addictions, which is reflected in her work. She understands it takes courage to change and is adept at helping people discover and access the strength within them. Shelley’s groups are dynamic, honest and provide an environment for self-exploration under the umbrella of recovery.

Michael Pitts


Michael Pitts’ dedication to the field of mental health and substance abuse stems from personal experience which allows him to naturally connect with clients in a meaningful way. Mr. Pitts has over five years of rich and fulfilling experience with this organization within several positions. This diverse history displays his ability to be versatile; therefore aiding him in his ability to effectively oversee as Program Director. Further, his ambition to consistently increase knowledge of mental health has led him to conducting marriage family therapy. It has been his long-time aspiration to develop a competent therapeutic skill set in order to effectively assist individuals and families in conquering the problems which hold them back from the quality of life they dream of. He obtained his Master’s in Psychology, with an emphasis in Marriage Family Therapy at Brandman University. His experience, determination, and passion prove he is an asset for our team’s leadership.

Chris Nelson


Chris has worked in the field of addiction for over three years, working on his Associates of Science in Addiction Studies, and plans on continuing his education to become an LMFT. He has a wide range of experience in substance abuse, including motivational interviewing, CBT, and relapse prevention. Chris has great success in meeting clients where they are mentally and emotionally and building rapport with a diverse population of clients towards personal growth. Chris has been an active member in the recovery community for over seven years and is greatly experienced in the 12 steps.

Jason Goldstein


Jason Goldstein is pursuing in becoming Certified alcohol drug counselor (CADC-1) as well as extensive knowledge on how to work recovery in his life. Jason attended at Sober college in Los Angeles, CA Jason has excelled in sports and developed the art of working as a team player. He brings to our program compassion, love of recovery. He is passionate about recovery and about helping our clients change the direction of their lives. Jason creates a trusting, vulnerable environment for our clients to navigate the most difficult emotional work.

Nerrissa Hsu

Group Facilitator

Nerrissa Hsu is a Master Integrated Breakthrough Coach, breathwork facilitator, and addiction recovery worker based in Los Angeles with a special focus on trauma-informed, gender- inclusive healing and recovery support. Following a successful career working in the advertising industry as an HR professional, corporate trainer and recruiter, Nerrissa discovered breathwork immediately after committing to her own recovery. She left her first-ever session feeling a new connection with her inner leadership and reminded that there is joy and aliveness ever present, co-mingled with grief and pain – even the most overwhelming forms. Nerrissa knew that she wanted to offer breathwork in her addiction recovery communities in an accessible, trauma-aware way, and she began a regular practice working with individuals and groups of all sizes inside and outside of the recovery space. Nerrissa believes that recovery is an individualistic experience; she offers heart-centered care and believes that her clients are the experts of their own experience.

Michael Flesher

Group Facilitator

My name is Michael Flesher. I am a Group Facilitator and Sobriety Coach at Inneractions IOP. I have a Masters Degree in Education from University of California Santa Barbara, and an RADT. My goal is to meet you wherever you may be in your journey and first and foremost, listen to you. I have struggled with Addiction in the past, and I was even a client at Inneractions. In other words, I’ve been there. I will collaborate with you, utilizing innovative strategies from a variety of therapeutic modalities, to design a personalized plan of action to help you stay sober for good.

Jose Villagran

Group facilitator

39 years old male from Zacatecas Mexico. Family Man, 1 son 18 year of age, 1 daughter 6 years of age. Married for 20 years and Counseling for 17 years. Born in February, Aquarius 1 hour before a Valentines baby. Part of my self-actualization is that my wealth comes from my passion for what i do, and it has made me very good at it. Str8fwdCounseling I call it.

Brad Fontaine

Case Manager

I’m Brad, the Case Manager at Northridge Detox. With over 8 years of experience working in substance abuse treatment, I have developed a wide array of recovery tools and proven strategies to offer clients in group settings and individual sessions. This experience, paired with the professional staff here at Northridge Detox, has proven to be successful in helping the many we have served reach their goals safely.

Helping our clients secure time off from work as well as financial support so they are able to focus on their wellbeing is one of my primary focuses at Northridge. I work to eliminate these barriers that may make healing more difficult than it needs to be. I also play an integral role in the Admissions and Discharge planning of all clients at our facility. My personal goal is to create and provide a caring atmosphere where each client feels seen, heard, and supported while they are on this journey of healing and overall well being.

Jennifer Poynter

Yoga Therapist

Jennifer Poynter is a yoga and meditation teacher who focuses on health and healing underserved communities and those impacted by trauma and abuse. Her classes are held in studios, drug rehabs, homeless shelters, and prisons. She has multiple certifications in yoga, meditation, yoga for trauma, and Tai Chi Qong. The power of yoga has helped her grow stronger emotionally, physically, spiritually, and artistically. Her care filled, balanced teaching style allows students to release tension and anxiety and open up to the knowledge, wisdom, and creativity that is already inside each of them.

Shireen Janti

Director of Alumni & Family Services

For over 33 years Shireen has been sought after as a force in the field of Mental Health and Chemical Dependency. Her numerous credentials include earning a CPC (Certified Professional Coach), (LAADC) Licensed Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor, and a (CRPS) Certified Relapse Prevention Specialist.

Professionally Shireen has organized and facilitated numerous panels and workshops on a variety of topics bringing awareness, prevention, and resources to Shireen comes with over three decades of experience helping people heal, shift, and transform their lives. She has helped thousands of people increase their life satisfaction and move into healthy relationships, experience increased self-esteem, improve parenting skills, increase career satisfaction, and overcome substance and process addictions that include alcohol, substances, food, shopping, sex etc.

Her vast experience working in the entertainment industry includes positions at AFTRA (American Federation of Radio and Television Artists); Fox Film Corporation; Fox Sports Net; Capitol Records; and 18 years at MusiCares, the charitable arm of the Recording Academy otherwise known as the Grammys. Starting in 2004 in the role of an Addiction Recovery Specialist, she moved up the ranks Senior Director of Mental Health & Addiction Services, addressing crisis situations and various needs of music professionals nationwide.

After many years serving the entertainment industry, Shireen decided to widen her reach to be able to offer her experience and skills to people from all walks of life, and successfully created her coaching and consulting practice.

Shireen has worked with diverse cultures, backgrounds and populations throughout the years bringing hope and change to those wanting support around various life challenges. Her experience includes overcoming her own challenges, and obstacles allowing her to continue to grow and expand her life. She knows growth and change are possible because she lives it.

Shireen has personal and professional experience healing from and overcoming struggles with substance abuse (sober now since 1989), eating disorders, depression, unhealthy relationships, family disputes, career frustrations, dating, and finding courage to leave or stay in relationships or other situations. Having personally overcome struggles with sadness and depression, she is in a unique position to understand from not only academic but lived experience. Shireen has changed her life and wants to help you achieve your desires and dreams. She is warm hearted, honest, and straight forward. Known for her vibrant spirit and authentic expression, many find comfort, relatability, and the tools to change through their work with Shireen. She is a sought-after speaker both nationally and internationally and has presented at conferences in Thailand, Tulum, London and across the USA. You can learn more about through several her website featuring several podcasts and articles she has contributed to.

Additionally, Shireen received several awards in the fields of Mental Health and Addiction including the “Gratitude for Giving” by the Sierra Tucson Treatment Center 2010; “Distinguished Service In the Field Of Recovery” by Miriam’s House, Polo in the Palisades 2016; the “Visionary Award” at the CCAPP (California Consortium of Addiction Programs and Professionals) Convention 2016; and the WAAT (Woman’s Association of Addiction Treatment) “Victoria Smart” Award 2019.

Along with Shireen’s private coaching practice, she works with various facilities and organizations nationwide offering coaching, consulting, training and other resources for their clients, family members and employees.

Shireen loves helping people find their way through life’s challenges. She continues to witness firsthand how her years of life experience and coaching have now aligned and have enabled her to truly help others to open doors to their lives

Kyle McGuire

Lead Technician

Kyle McGuire is the Lead Technician at Northridge Detox. Kyle’s passion and drive to see patients succeed in in treatment is attributed to his own successful journey in sobriety. Because of his own personal experiences and challenges, Kyle is able to understand, contribute, educate and help nurture individual realistic goals each client has. He believes every client possesses the potential to change their own lives if given the excellent medical care, and the best tools in a safe environment. Kyle’s responsibilities include continuing staff training, supervision of staff, auditing/ quality control and assisting with scheduling needs. Kyle has a personal vision of growth at Northridge Detox that he will strengthen by continuing his education at Santa Monica College and working diligently to continue to grow and learn new tools and skills to inspire and educate others towards taking a step towards sobriety, treatment and their journey thereafter.

Jamie Carranza


Chef Jamie graduated on the President’s list at Le Cordon Bleu, Pasadena. She grew up watching her mom in the kitchen cooking up some amazing creations. Chef Jamie has loved working with food for a really long time. She has run her own kitchen where she had to create menus for individuals with numerous dietary restrictions. She loves to create delicious recipes that everyone will love. Chef Jamie loves to cook at home with her 3 kids, Cadence, Emmy & Ethan. They are always coming up with delicious dinners.

Chef Jamie loves to introduce food to people with comfort and compassion.

We Want To Help

We are here for you or your loved one every step of the way. Detox is the first step to long-term sobriety and our program uses effective treatments to make sure our clients are well cared for during the process. Reach out today to schedule a free consultation and take the first step to getting the rest of your life back.

Don’T Wait For Tomorrow


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