Inner Immersion was created through a profound near-death experience that would permanently alter the ways in which we viewed healing, recovery, and self-transformation. What started as a personal journey has successfully evolved into a modality that supports significant breakthroughs, builds resiliency, and creates hope.
Heightened by a global pandemic, the need for accessible, impactful mental health services has never been greater. With a scalable program designed to support individuals and organizations across various sectors, we feel a responsibility to ensure over-burdened, vulnerable, and at-risk populations have the opportunity to experience wellness, transformed.
Jose Hernandez, an artist, international speaker, and co-founder of Inner Immersion, Inc., integrates his near-death experience into transformative art and the powerful Inner Immersion modality. A former electrical engineer, Jose's life took a dramatic turn after a near-death experience in 2000 and grueling years long recovery.
In 2004, he began using art as a meditative tool, with his work exhibited in US galleries and featured in prestigious collections, including the Cleveland Clinic, the Nicklaus Children’s Dan Marino Outpatient Centre, and other healing centers across the US and Canada.
Jose lives in the Okanagan, British Columbia with his wife, Anastasia, and their youngest daughter, Gabrielle, and travels regularly to share his insights on healing, the masculine journey, and the therapeutic impact of art. He is a member of the Advisory Council of Fundación Elisabeth Kübler-Ross México Centro and the Association of Transformational Leaders. Jose's near-death experience is showcased in the Netflix Docu-series, Surviving Death.
Anastasia Hernandez is the passionate and dedicated co-founder of Inner Immersion, where she has played an integral role in sharing Jose's transformative art and helping to evolve the Inner Immersion modality and disseminate it to a broad audience. With a partnership spanning since 2007, Anastasia's long commitment to holistic well-being, personal transformation and community support inform her multifaceted contributions to Inner Immersion and provide a valuable and unique perspective to the organization.
In addition to her pivotal work at Inner Immersion, Anastasia holds a certification as an end-of-life doula in British Columbia, Canada, which gives her the opportunity to share her compassionate and empathetic nature and passion for supporting individuals during their most vulnerable moments. Anastasia has co-facilitated a chapter of the International Association for Near-Death Studies (IANDS) in British Columbia for several years and developed the transformational end-of-life awareness program, "Where Your Treasure Lies", leading workshops and retreats and speaking on her experience with Jose in the NDE field. Anastasia studied English Literature at the University of North London (now the London Metropolitan University).
Advisor for Community Well-being and Cultural Relations
Allen King, our Advisor for Community Well-being, brings a wealth of experience rooted in his commitment to Native American healthcare. Beginning his career at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Native Health Services, and Phoenix Indian Medical Services, Allen's passion for aiding Elders and Native Americans in accessing healthcare services flourished.
Allen, a prominent speaker at national conferences since 2013, addresses critical issues facing tribes, such as substance abuse, alcoholism, and mental health. Drawing from his own recovery journey, he actively advocates for these concerns.
Beyond his professional roles, Allen volunteers with Native Health Services, participating in community pow wow events as a headman dancer and contributing to the Wellbriety Movement as a certified Firestarter.
Formerly the Chief Administrative Officer for Sunrise Native Recovery, Allen's focus on developing treatment programs underscores his dedication to sustaining sobriety, providing quality care for trauma, and facilitating spiritual healing through cultural reconnection. Allen King's multifaceted expertise aligns seamlessly with his role as an advisor and advocate for Inner Immersion.
Advisor for Strategic Partnerships
Randy Kolibaba brings over three decades of senior leadership in healthcare, policing, and international affairs. Randy's commitment to service, coupled with his leadership motto of doing the right thing for the right reason, has driven him to achieve numerous high-profile accomplishments. His extensive background in First Nations policing, international policing in Kosovo, and leadership in diverse sectors, including the not-for-profit industry and the healthcare sector, led him to receive the highest awards, including the Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal for Outstanding Service to Canada (2012), Canada 125 Medal for Outstanding Service to Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples (1994) and Canadian Peacekeeping Medal (2000).
Randy's exceptional negotiation skills, strategic planning, and change management expertise have been honed through experiences ranging from commanding Canada's largest civilian policing mission to the United Nations to overseeing security operations for major health authorities. His commitment to fostering healthy, lasting partnerships aligns seamlessly with Inner Immersion's goals. Notably, Randy's personal journey, including his battle with PTSD, survival of a life-threatening autoimmune disease, and a Near Death Experience, brings a profound understanding to his advisory role and alignment with the mission and vision of Inner Immersion’s founders, Jose and Anastasia Hernandez. As a best-selling author and professional public speaker, Randy shares his insights, expertise and experience, contributing to our holistic approach to mental health and well-being.
Wilka Roig MTP, MFA, PLC
Clinical & Cross Cultural Advisor and Program Development
Wilka Roig brings a profound background shaped by her dedication to cultural sensitivity in healthcare. With a foundation laid at Cornell University, and The Institute for Transpersonal Psychology at Sofia University, Wilka's expertise spans clinical psychology and cross-cultural studies. Her commitment to bridging cultural gaps is evident in her roles at renowned organizations, fostering a deep understanding of diverse perspectives in healthcare delivery.
Wilka's passion for integrating mental health practices with cultural awareness is showcased through her extensive work in clinical settings. Her expertise not only enriches our team but also ensures that Inner Immersion's programs are culturally responsive and inclusive.
Wilka's multifaceted insights and commitment to holistic well-being make her an invaluable asset in guiding our approach to mental health within diverse communities. Her years advocating for quality end-of-life care and serving as the Deputy Director for Education for the Elisabeth Kübler Ross-Foundation Global gives her unique insight and experience.
Wilka is the lead developer in adapting Inner Immersion for our end-of-life and hospice programs.
Victoria Laine, RHN, CSW
Curriculum Development and Facilitator Trainor
Victoria Laine is a mental health educator, yoga instructor, registered nutritionist, and community collaborator with a broad range of expertise. Her present work includes delivering a college social services program in community support work, trauma-informed counseling and interviewing skills, addictions counseling, youth counseling, mental health, psychosocial rehabilitation, human development, psychology, sociology, intimate partner violence, families and culture, palliative and end-of-life care.
In addition to her role at Inner Immersion, Victoria is actively developing a new curriculum focused on optimal nutrition for mental health, a field she is passionate about and dedicated to sharing. Engaged in social justice organizing, she leads a reconciliation learning circle, emphasizing her commitment to creating positive societal change.
Victoria resides in the Okanagan Valley in southern B.C., Canada, acknowledging her settler background and expressing gratitude for the opportunity to live on the unceded traditional territory of the Sylix Okanagan nation and for the opportunity and priviledge to learn from the elders and wise ones, shaping her approach to her work.
Victoria's extensive expertise as a mental health educator, registered nutritionist, and community collaborator uniquely positions her to co-develop Inner Immersion's curriculum, ensuring a holistic, trauma informed and culturally sensitive approach to teaching and facilitating Inner Immersion’s groundbreaking program.
Founded by strategic business leaders committed to making healthcare better, Certive Health is the business management arm for Inner Immersion.
Certive Health’s leadership team and advisory council are accomplished healthcare executives, leaders in their fields, and passionate about what they do. With deep connections in healthcare, they drive product innovation and growth and have been foundational in scaling Inner Immersion to bring this cutting-edge modality to market.
CEO of Certive Health, with over 30 years of senior leadership experience in healthcare and employee benefit companies, Tom has been a driving force in guiding Inner Immersion's success.
As the founder and CEO of Marreel Slater Insurance, a healthcare consulting and benefit brokerage business in Phoenix, Arizona, Tom's multifaceted experience and leadership contribute significantly to the growth and direction of Inner Immersion.
Beyond his professional roles, Tom actively engages with Arizona-based healthcare organizations, providing capital investments, board leadership, and strategic planning. Holding a BS degree in Marketing from Arizona State University, Tom's hands-on approach and extensive background have been instrumental in positioning Inner Immersion for success, aligning with his commitment to strategic planning and business development in the healthcare sector.
Aurilla (Dee Dee) Fusco
Advisor: Fundraising and Strategic Partnerships
Dee Dee brings over twenty-five years of leadership experience, from Capitol Hill to international settings. A native of Washington, DC, she holds a Master’s in Public Administration and an Executive Juris Doctor. Dee Dee's diverse career includes supporting U.S. Senators, service in Germany with the Department of the Army, and public office in New Hampshire.
Recently launching GiveWise, her own LLC, Dee Dee emphasizes a donor-centric approach in development. Recognized with awards like Woman Who Roars, Advancement Leader at the Jackson Laboratory, and Gulf Coast Community Foundation Leadership Institute participant, Dee Dee is a seasoned professional with a passion for community service. Married to a media professional, she enjoys family time, walks, water exercises, bicycling, and travel with their Aussie-Doodle, Penny.
Dee Dee's wealth of experience and commitment to community wellbeing make her an invaluable asset to Inner Immersion.