MEET OUR TEAM

We are a group of caring individuals that all share the same goal; Making sure our patients get the best treatment possible.

James Dopp Mueller
Founder

After serving with the US Army 5th Special Forces Group in Vietnam, Jim had a 30-year career in Real Estate managing shopping centers for ITT, General Electric, Prudential Insurance and Travelers Insurance.

Jim’s second career began with the Hazelden Foundation at their facility in West Palm Beach, Florida. He began working on the men’s unit. He then worked on the older adult unit, and then was promoted to the education department. His responsibilities included the supervision of the professional addiction training Institute, the Physician Faculty Training Program and he led the internship programs with eight Master degree programs. He eventually became the chairman of the Education Team, a member of the Clinical Leadership Team, and ultimately, a member of the Executive Leadership Team.

Jim was sent to Costa Rica as a consultant/expert in 2002 to make a presentation on the Minnesota model to governmental agencies responsible for health care in Costa Rica. He was contracted to become the Clinical Director of ACERPA in San Jose to implement the Hazelden Addiction Treatment Model.

Jim is one of the founders of Costa Rica Recovery.

John Holien
Chief Holistic Officer / Executive Director

In long term recovery, a Minnesota native, Grateful Dead enthusiast, loving and involved father of two, and successful business development entrepreneur, John has been reborn into his highest path as the Executive Director of Costa Rica Recovery. He arrived in this beautiful country in December of 2018 and knew upon arrival that this was where he was meant to be. After reconnecting with his vision for a purposeful next chapter, he met Jim Dopp, the Mother Theresa of recovery as well as the founder of Costa Rica Recovery. Upon retirement, Jim chose John to direct the treatment center he started in 2006. John is honored to be a part of the solution in utilizing his experience, strength and hope.

Laura Roca del Solar, B.A., M.S.
Administrative Director

Laura maintains administrative staff by recruiting, selecting, orienting, and training employees. Also by communicating job expectations and appraising job results. She ensures a safe, secure, and well-maintained facility that meets environmental, health, and security standards. In her free time, she likes to go to the beach and enjoy nature with her family. She likes music and arts.

Deborah Schmidt
Clinical Director

Deborah deeply understands the plight of women that are first getting into treatment and then continuing on the recovery journey. Deborah’s mission is to carry the message of hope in recovery to female patients at the center. Deborah’s holistic approach to recovery, combined with compassion and an alternative style of recovery coaching, offers women a real opportunity to put the past behind them and travel the road to recovery. Every woman who passes through the office to seek Deborah’s guidance comes away with hope for the future. Deborah works to help women overcome the trauma that often keeps them from committing to a recovery program.

Sharon Fallas
Humanistic Psychologist

As a humanistic psychologist with an emphasis on Gestalt, Sharon’s work is aimed not only at helping the patient to overcome their symptoms or conflicts, but also to help them grow as a person, work on the blockages that prevent them from achieving self realization in their life; this through the work of “awareness”, providing the opportunity to regain balance. Sharon gives special attention to build and develop tools that help to deal with different life scenarios.

Cindy Cervantes
Clinical Psychologist

Cindy Cervantes is a licensed psychologist who has worked in various addiction treatment centers in Costa Rica. In addition to addiction treatment, she also has experience treating patients suffering from psychiatric illnesses such as depression, anxiety, trauma, personality disorders, and others.

CoNe Zamora
Transpersonal Psychologist / Counselor

Known as CoNe, this groundbreaking psychologist, writer, and musician is introducing new holistic and transpersonal techniques into addiction therapy and counseling seeking to guide recovering addicts through the twelve-step program toward authentic spiritual awakening. Actively involved in recovery for 15 years as an active member of self-help groups, an expert in hypnosis, memory regressions and modern meditation, he seeks in his therapeutic proposal to capture a new evolutionary path within recovery by exploring the limits of human potential.

Ariana Sesin, MBA, RYT200
Psychologist

A Costarican based licensed psychologist who has broaden her studies into an integration of therapeutics tools that allow her clients to take responsibility for their own healing through the use of alternative practices that connect body mind and spirit

Her certification cover therapeutic tarot reader, sound healing, yoga, akashik records reader, breathwork, and nature inspired shamanism to guide people in a compassionate to healing and wellbeing

Monica Otero
Addiction Counselor

Monica has been involved in recovery for the past 23 years being an active member of 12 Step Recovery programs. She has several certifications in the coaching field which qualify her to guide and support our clients and motivate them while holding them accountable so they can achieve a vision of change from active addiction to active Recovery.

She is also a facilitator and mentor specializing in coaching for Addiction coaches. She has been asked to speak in several institutions in Costa Rica and Internationally.

Her experience as Project developer in FundaVida , an NGO with the mission to rescue youth at risk of addiction and delinquent behavior in extreme poverty and marginal areas has served over 500 kids.

Dr. Rosario de Vega
Staff Physician

Dr. Rosario de Vega is a Cincinnati, Ohio US trained family physician, who has practiced in Costa Rica since 2010. She has worked with Costa Rica Recovery since 2016 and has helped many patients overcome their acute withdrawal symptoms along with their detox programs. She is in charge of evaluating each patient that comes into Costa Rica Recovery and elaborating on an individual and well-titrated medication plan to alleviate any withdrawal symptoms. She is our on-call physician and is always available to address any medical condition a patient may present during their stay at Costa Rica Recovery.

Dr. Francisco Jimenez Marten
Psychiatry Specialist

Costa Rica university Substance Abuse Scholar Johns Hopkins University He worked at the Institute of Alcoholism and Drug dependency in the Departments of External Consultation, Detoxification, Rehabilitation and Research. Former director of Addictive Disorders Treatment Centers: Country House, Serenity House, Serenity House He has worked in epidemiological and clinical-pharmacological research in both psychiatry and addictions. He has 38 years of experience in private psychiatric consultation and in the area of ​​addictive behaviors. Currently attending Clinica Serenidad, Curridabat.

Justin Konickson
Veteran Outreach

Justin is a U.S. Military Veteran and alumni of Costa Rica Recovery Center. He works to assist fellow veterans navigate a sometimes complex VA benefits system.

Carrie Wessling
Research and Development

A lifelong student of human behavior, healing and movement, Carrie joined Costa Rica Recovery in early 2022 to guide research and development. As a survivor of addiction, she understands the affliction on a cellular level. Her knowledge and passion for holistic healing modalities along with her extensive understanding on treating the disease of addiction leads to expansion of the dynamic program at Costa Rica Recovery.

Andrea Cespedes
Social Worker

Andrea Cespedes is a professional social worker focused on carrying out individual, group and family interventions to improve the quality of life of patients, helping them to face psychosocial conflicts and achieve more satisfactory interpersonal relationships, through the analysis of their environment and experiences. Her intervention is not only based on the addiction itself, but socioeconomic, cultural and family elements are taken into consideration to achieve a comprehensive well-being of the person.

Chris Wright
House Manager

A resident of the United States, Chris is a former patient of CRR and an active member of the recovery community in San Jose. He completed coursework to become a Certified Recovery Specialist as sanctioned by the International Recovery Institute in London. He has a genuine desire to help and work with other addicts. Throughout the week he assists with medication management, transportation, scheduling and various patient needs. He also works with patients as a 12-Step Coach. He is a chef by trade and has made his food available to the patients on special occasions. In his free time he enjoys running, yoga, painting, the beach, reading and hiking. He is happy to be part of the CRR team.

Kaela O'Brien
House Manager

Passionate about helping those struggling with mental health and substance abuse disorder, Kaela is herself a former patient of CRR and grateful to be a part of the team. She is active in the San Jose recovery community, hailing originally from the United States. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, meditation, art projects, trips to the beach and connecting with her community. 

Marco Morris
House Manager/Spiritual Hype Coach

Marco Morris is a Human development professional with extensive experience empowering individuals to become the best version of themselves. Morris is a graduate of the Teen Challenge Addiction Restoration Center and has more than 26 years of being clean, which makes him deeply and empathetically understand the recovery process of our clients, empowering and motivating them, from a practical and spiritual approach (NOT religious). He works as a certified speaker for the John Maxwell Leadership Foundation in the promotion of Values and for Focus on the Family as part of the training and counseling team. He was also Program Director for more then 10 years, of the largest youth camp in Latin America in the field of addiction prevention and the promotion of values, reaching more than 100.000 young people in the continent. He is the Director and founder of MORRIS360 Support Center and human development specialized organization in Coaching, Training and counseling. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family and friends, watching soccer, NBA, playing sports and doing community service

Mark DeWaard
House Manager

Mark takes care of the patients in residence. Canadian by birth, Mark is a longtime member of the local 12 Step groups and resident of Costa Rica. He is a family man who enjoys sports and playing guitar. Mark compassionately looks after patients during their time of growth.

Laura Sibaja
Sound Healing Therapist

Laura’s goal is to restore the balance and fluidity of each person´s natural state, operating on the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels. The vibration and sound of the instruments that we use together with the application of reiki in the session harmonizes the brain waves and introduces you to a deep state of relaxation that favors healing and translates into a feeling of unity: body, mind, and spirit making them work in harmony, increasing well-being and providing great peace.

Rich Lebow
Counselor
Richard has worked in the field for over 11 years and has personally helped 100’s of patients find their way to Costa Rica for treatment and leave clean. With his years of experience in Recovery and Relapse Prevention, he looks forward to each day helping others find a new way to live.
 
Meblyn Leal Ruiz
Masseuse

Meblyn is our go to talented and respectful masseuse who provides professional massage services with a variety of techniques for relaxing with lymphatic drainage which helps you relax with anxiety control and the detoxification process. She helps our patients to relax when they enter the center and is available for continuing sessions as well.

Gustavo Chavarria
Maintenance

Gustavo makes sure that everything stays in working order. He handles general maintenance, construction, and anything we need to keep the physical buildings in good working order. He’s a friendly presence always there with a smile and a “Pura Vida”. We appreciate all that he does for us!

Rosa Canales
Chef

Food is energy – it restores the body and its essential for life. Quality food choices are important for any type of recovery program. Costa Rica Recovery believes in nutritional coaching, which is why we serve fresh fruits and vegetables with every meal. Costa Rica has an abundance of excellent fresh food choices and we incorporate them into our program. Rosa is our weekend chef with the talent and knowledge to make delicious and healthy meals.

Imara Ayales
Cleaning Goddess

Imara helps to keep the house and grounds clean and in good order. She believes a clean and orderly environment is conducive to healthy recovery.

Luz Machado
Sous Chef

Food is energy – it restores the body and its essential for life. Quality food choices are important for any type of recovery program. Costa Rica Recovery believes in nutritional coaching, which is why we serve fresh fruits and vegetables with every meal. Costa Rica has an abundance of excellent fresh food choices and we incorporate them into our program. Rosa is our weekend chef with the talent and knowledge to make delicious and healthy meals.

Andrea Lara
Maintenance Ninja

Andrea makes sure that everything stays in working order. She handles general maintenance, construction, and anything we need to keep the physical buildings in good working order. She’s a friendly presence always there with a smile and a “Pura Vida”. We appreciate all that he does for us!

Maca
Chief of Security