Wamego Named Pillar Professional of the Year

Kristen Wamego of Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation named Pillar Professional of the Year,  Travois honors industry “superheroes” at the annual conference.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (May 9, 2019) – Travois, a Certified B Corporation® based in Kansas City, Mo., recognized five outstanding industry professionals and an American Indian tribal entity at a Superhero Awards ceremony on April 11. The consulting firm, continuing 24 years in business and directing more than $1.4 billion of investment in American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian communities, held the ceremony at its 19th Annual Indian Country Affordable Housing & Economic Development Conference in Miami, Florida.

“Since 2015 we’ve honored industry professionals doing amazing work in their communities,” said Elizabeth Glynn, Travois chief executive officer. “These honorees have filled their communities with beautiful homes, successful businesses and created thousands of jobs with the use of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit and New Market Tax Credit programs. Our annual awards ceremony celebrates the important work of Indian Country’s housing and economic development professionals and provides inspiration to all in attendance.”

Pillar Professional — Kristen Wamego, general manager of tribal operations for the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation (PBPN), Mayetta, KS

Kristen Wamego knows how to manage a project, stretch a dollar, and battle the elements to deliver a quality product on time.

In the past year, Wamego has completed a Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) development that brought 27-single family homes to her community. This complicated process involved everything from reviewing contractor bids to performing punch list walk-throughs for completion. Her open communication skills with all parties involved ensured smooth operations through both the closing and construction process.

“I would like to thank Travois for the recognition,” Kristen Wamego said. “While I am appreciative and humbled to receive this award, I do not work alone and must recognize the PBPN team and their hard work on making our third Low Income Housing Tax Credit project a success.”

In addition, she was able to submit a LIHTC application for a rehabilitation development for community elders. More housing opportunities for Prairie Band tribal members are the direct result of her remarkable work.

Wamego continued: “Community development is vital to our nation, and providing quality, affordable homes has been instrumental in that process. It has been a rewarding experience, and I am grateful to the hard work and assistance that Travois has provided. I look forward to working with Travois in continuing to develop the PBPN community.”

2019 Superheroes:
Housing Professional of the Year: Sara Spence, executive director of the Karuk Tribe Housing Authority (KTHA); Happy Camp, CA

Economic Development Professional of the Year – Pat Mercier, CEO of the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians; Corning, CA

Pillar Professionals — Kristen Wamego, general manager of tribal operations for the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation (PBPN), Mayetta, KS

Haven Professional of the Year — Elfina Kalemsa, resident services program manager for Hopi Tribal Housing Authority; Polacca, AZ

Project Team of the Year — Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation; Smith River, CA

For more information, visit

About the Low Income Housing Tax Credit
The Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) was signed into law by President Reagan in the Tax Reform Act of 1986 and is included in Section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code. It was first expanded and made permanent under President Clinton in 1993, and further strengthened under President Bush and President Obama, reflecting its strong bipartisan support. It was created to encourage private investment in the construction or rehabilitation of housing for low-income families. Today it is widely regarded as the nation’s most successful housing production program. The housing credit has financed more than 3 million affordable apartments through public-private partnerships, and supports 96,000 jobs each year, mostly in the small-business sector. For more information, visit

About Travois
Travois is a Certified B Corporation and Kansas City-based consulting firm focused exclusively on promoting housing and economic development for American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian communities. Since 1995, Travois has brought investor equity to 200 projects through the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program and New Markets Tax Credit program, making an impact of more than $1.3 billion across Indian Country. These private investor funds have helped build or rehabilitate more than 5,300 homes and have helped finance critical economic development projects, including infrastructure, health care, community centers, education facilities and job incubators. Travois family of companies also offers architectural design and construction monitoring services, environmental assessments, consulting on green building, asset management and compliance services, impact investment models, and comprehensive training to clients in 22 states, from Hawaii and Alaska to Maine and California. For more information, please visit or find us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram or on the company blog.