SBA Tribal 8(a) Joint Venture

CAGE Code: 8WET5


Wallowa Strategies, LLC, is an SBA 8(a) Joint Venture comprised of Cayuse Technologies, LLC, and Kauffman & Associates, Inc. (KAI). Using best practices in project management, stakeholder engagement, and quality controls, our team delivers culturally appropriate management and technology support to federal agencies.

  1. Training & Technical Assistance

  2. Strategic planning

  3. Grants Management

  4. Tribal Stakeholder Engagement

We believe in the inherent resilience of our indigenous people and the people-powered success of our companies. We work to improve lives, families, communities, and the organizations and systems that serve them. Our work is founded upon ancient wisdom and teachings, combined with the latest technology and strategies to find solutions for our clients and communities.

Core Capabilities


Past Performance

Grow the People, Grow the Company

Cayuse’s core values mirror the traditions of the three tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation: the Walla Walla, Umatilla, and Cayuse Tribes. We do this while also embracing the world we now live in, including high technology, competition, and a knowledge worker–based economy. As a tribal and corporate entity, our mission is to “Grow the People, Grow the Company.” Under “Grow the People,” Cayuse focuses efforts to grow sustainable, marketable technology and business operations skillsets to expand our employment and economic diversity. Under “Grow the Company,” Cayuse has been successful in significantly growing top-line revenue to support our employees and continue our growth. We have done so by increasing the focus, scale and depth of our marketable capabilities and offerings.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

SAMHSA Tribal Training and Technical Assistance Center

KAI supports SAMSHA’s Tribal Training and Technical Assistance Center (TTTAC) to provide comprehensive Broad, Focused, and Intensive training and technical assistance (TTA) to federally recognized tribes and other AI/AN communities, seeking to address and prevent mental and substance use disorders and suicide and to promote mental health. We designed a culturally relevant, evidence-based, holistic approach to support Native communities in their self-determination efforts through infrastructure development, capacity building, and program planning and implementation.

SAMHSA TTA to Native Connections Grantees

KAI provides virtual and on-site TTA support for tribal grantees across the United States. Our subcontract supports tribal communities in preventing and reducing substance abuse and suicidal behavior among AI/AN youth up to age 24. The TTA is designed to allow AI/AN communities to support youth and young adults as they transition into adulthood by facilitating collaboration among agencies and equipping them with culturally appropriate resources.

Gathering of Native Americans (GONA) Curriculum Development

Under a SAMHSA subcontract through Macro International, KAI convened AI/AN trainers and facilitators from across the United States to develop a collaborative culture-based prevention curriculum called GONA in 1992. This has been one of the most widely used, broadly adapted, and efficient gathering formats for conducting local TTA and prevention planning. KAI was the principal author of the curriculum, working in close collaboration with myriad trainers.

SAMHSA Native Aspirations

Under a contract with SAMHSA, KAI designed and implemented a national strategy for the prevention of substance abuse, violence, bullying, and suicide. This emergency contract was initiated after the tragic school shooting on the Red Lake Reservation in Minnesota, specifically to identify tribal communities most at risk and to recruit them into an intensive engagement to plan and implement prevention strategies. More than 65 tribal communities were engaged in this Intensive TTA program.

SAMHSA Native American Center of Excellence (NACE) on Substance Abuse Prevention

Under a contract with SAMHSA Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP), KAI designed and implemented this national TTA resource center for AI/AN communities. The Center provided on-site and virtual TTA to tribes and to regional and national organizations serving Indian Country.

SAMHSA Circles of Care (CoC)

Under contract with SAMHSA, KAI developed and provided TTA for AI/AN CoC grantees locally and through national convenings. Our team worked closely with SAMHSA to bring subject matter expertise to grantees to address the systems of care across communities, partnership building, family support, and advocacy.

Indian Health Service (IHS)

IHS Methamphetamine and Suicide Prevention Initiative (MSPI)

Under contract with the IHS, KAI planned and delivered TTA to tribal and urban Indian grantees of the IHS MSPI program. These grantees received direct TTA through national and regional convenings.

IHS Implements the National 4-in-1 Evaluation Plan

KAI is conducting the national evaluation of the Office of Urban Indian Health Program’s (OUIHP’s) 4-in-1 grant program’s reporting and is developing a reporting template that will enable much more flexibility to report indicators of success that are important to AI/AN communities.

IHS/Urban Tele-Behavioral Health Implementation Plan

The Urban Indian Center of Salt Lake (UICSL) provides medical, BH, crisis, and social services to AI/AN people in a five-county urban and rural service area. UICSL contracted with KAI to conduct an environmental assessment and recommend changes that will help ensure a seamless transition into fully operational tele-BH services.

Education (ED)

Department of Education Region 16 Comprehensive Center

KAI partners with the Southeast Alaska Education Resource Center (SERRC) in a ground-up establishment and evaluation of the new Region 16 Comprehensive Center (R16CC) for the U.S. Department of Education. R16CC serves Washington, Oregon, and Alaska, with the goal of supporting equitable educational outcomes in Alaska, Washington, and Oregon. R16CC’s work in Washington State is tribally focused.


Do you encourage students to NOT go to college?

I encourage students to do what makes most sense for them. Some students should go to college. Other students should not go to college. I reject the cookie-cutter approach given to virtually all students that says everyone must go to college no matter what. Instead, I give individualized advice specific to the person asking.

Why "HACKiversity" and not "hackiversity"?

Emphasis. HACKiversity (and all related projects) is radical about productivity, so I created a name to say as much.

Why do you encourage students to work less? Aren't you encouraging lazyiness?

No. HACKing college is all about results, and in particular, achieving a higher per hour output. By focusing on the things that matter most, students can accomplish more with less time. This is difficult for most to accept because we live in a culture that rewards personal sacrifice instead of personal productivity. Completing fewer hours of meaningless work so students can focus on things that matter more is not laziness.

I'm a high school/college student who is busy. Why should I add one more thing and follow your advice?

The point of my advice is not to add anything to your workload. Instead, the point is to help you eliminate the many college activities that provide little value. The reality of college is that most things don't matter all that much. If you organize your college experience around the few things that matter most, which is what HACKiversity focuses on, and ignore everything else, your life will be simpler and your results better.

I have college advisors. Why do I need you?

Many college advisors played the college game 20 to 30 years ago, a period when simply going to college, getting good grades, and graduating with a degree virtually guaranteed a great job. Today, it no longer does. Unfortunately, many college advisors haven't adapted to the new world, mainly because they're convinced the old way still works. To excel in college, however, students must discard the conventional model and adapt to new realities. Who students need to hear from are recent college graduates: those who have experienced college and the workplace inside the New Economy. As a recent college graduate, I understand first-hand the new dynamics in the workforce and how those affect (or should affect) college approaches. All non-recent graduates advising students do so on the basis of analyzing-- from the outside--the lives and experiences of recent college graduates just like me. Better to go straight from the source, if you ask me. In fact, you should :-)

New approaches are risky. Why should I gamble with something as important as college?

New approaches can be risky, but only if they are new. The college approach I recommend has worked beautifully for thousands of students, including those highlighted in my book, HACKiversity, and those interviewed on my podcast, The HACKiversity Podcast. What's perhaps the riskiest choice of all is continuing to do the "same old, same old" inside a world changing faster than ever.

How did you create the idea of "HACKing college" (i.e. doing college differently)?

It was a blessing in disguise, really. Actually, two. The first occurred because, despite my great grades in college, I graduated with no job. Zero. The second occurred after my numerous rejections from Ivy League law schools. My great grades qualified me for an Ivy League law school, but my mediocre LSAT score (the standardized exam) did not. If I received a job immediately after college graduation, particularly on Wall Street (the job I wanted), I never would have realized that the typical college approach is broken. If I received admission into an Ivy League law school, I would've been driving a BMW as a 25-year old without any regard to college students. These experiences uniquely positioned me outside of the "elite" jobs (so I wouldn't forget about college students), while equipping me with the education and experiences to do something about it.

Who has influenced you the most?

I call them the "Big Three." They are the following (in the order of me first reading their work): 1. Tim Ferriss. When I read the 4-Hour Work Week, my mind was blown. To succeed, Ferriss recommended living a lifestyle contrary to everyone else. Time, mobility, and freedom were prized. Waiting to enjoy life until retirement was rejected. The best part: Ferriss showed that this success is available now, no matter the age, using less effort and time than previously unimaginable. But to achieve it, one must play by unconventional rules. Ferriss' playbook contradicted everything I had learned in college and law school, and I was hooked. 2. Richard Koch. In college, I worked hard. In law school, I worked even harder. Then I read Koch's The 80/20 Principle, which said that it's possible to achieve more by doing less. Koch explains how most results in life and college (e.g. studying, networking, job searching) comes from a small amount of effort. By focusing on the few things that produce oversized results, it's possible to generate radical productivity. Due to the 80/20 Principle, my life has become much simpler, enjoyable, and, yes, successful. The 80/20 Principle is the backbone to my recommended college approach. Quite fittingly, Koch authored the Foreword to my book, HACKiversity. 3. Tim Keller. Almost single handedly, Keller legitimized (in my mind at least) Christianity. In Reason for God, Keller made an intellectual case for the existence of God, giving me the confidence needed to accept the tenants of Christianity. Runner-ups: 4. Peter Thiel (entrepreneurship, economics, politics) 5. Nassim Taleb (economics and finance) 6. Stephen Covey (personal development) 7. Thomas Sowell (economics and sociology)

Foundations, Nonprofits, for For-Profits

AARP AI/AN Urban Survey Communications Plan

KAI supported AARP’s National Urban Elder Needs Assessment Survey (NUENAS), which aims to assess the gap in available knowledge about AI/AN elders in urban environments. KAI worked to ensure that the well-established network of health and social service providers engaged and supported urban Indian populations in a meaningful and productive way that enabled maximization and sharing of information and research impacts.

Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) Grantee Evaluation Design, Data Collection, And Analysis

Since 2012, KAI has provided evaluation consultation services to 21 grantees of MACP Native Arts and Cultures (NAC) Program. KAI assists grantees in developing logic models and evaluation plans and in identifying metrics and data collection instruments specific to each grantee. We developed a first-of-its-kind grantee dashboard for tracking data collection and for producing metrics that are meaningful and appropriate, reflect grantees’ priorities and cultural contexts, and provide a place where grantees can access a web-based data collection system and update their evaluation information.

MACP Consultant Services for Organizational Capacity Building Assessment

KAI conducted an OCA for Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies’ four key partners to gather insights about areas in which future capacity building could be beneficial. KAI’s team of organizational management professionals researched best practices in OCA; identified and developed an OCA tool that is conducive to deep and sustainable work within Indian country; administered and conducted the OCA process, including site visits and webinars, in conjunction with four NAC key grantee partners; and formulated recommendations for organizational capacity building and effectiveness based on the results and findings of the assessment.