Wellbriety WhiteBison

White Bison

6455 N. Union Blvd, Ste 102 | Colorado Springs CO 80918 | Toll Free 877-871-1495
A Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Member #11364


White Bison Inc., is a Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Member #11364


White Bison, Inc., is an American Indian/Alaska Native non-profit charitable organization operating under the provisions of 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code and is based in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Through White Bison, it's Founder and President Don Coyhis, Mohican Nation, has offered healing resources to Native America since 1988. White Bison offers sobriety, recovery, addictions prevention, and wellness/Wellbriety learning resources to the Native American/Alaska Native community nationwide. Many non-Native people also use White Bison's healing resource products, attend its learning circles, and volunteer their services. White Bison is a NAADAC approved provider (#64009) and a Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Member #11364.  

The White Bison Vision

We are a Native American operated 501(c)3 nonprofit company dedicated to creating and sustaining a grassroots Wellbriety Movement that provides culturally based healing to the next seven generations of Indigenous People.

White Bison is a proud facilitator of the Wellbriety Movement. Wellbriety means to be sober and well. Wellbriety teaches that we must find sobriety from addictions to alcohol and other drugs and recover from the harmful effects of drugs and alcohol on individuals, families and whole communities. The "Well" part of Wellbriety is the inspiration to go on beyond sobriety and recovery, committing to a life of wellness and healing everyday.

Meet Our Leaders

Don Coyhis Don Coyhis, Mohican Nation, is the President and Founder of White Bison, Inc., an American Indian non-profit organization, located in Colorado Springs, CO. Don originally set out to raise awareness and treat alcoholism among Indian youth on the reservations. After studying the underlying causes of alcoholism, White Bison’s mission expanded to include drug addiction, dysfunctional families and relationships, as well as the American Indian suicide rate. From this, the Wellbriety Movement was born. The teachings of Wellbriety go beyond being sober to include thriving in the community and being balanced emotionally, mentally, physical and spiritually. Over the past 26 years, Don has developed a series of culturally-based programs to address recovery and treatment, youth prevention and treatment, programs for healthy families, and healing from unresolved grief and traumatic loss due to intergenerational trauma. These programs are designed help with all facets of family healing and have been implemented throughout the United States and Canada. Don Coyhis was the 2009 winner of the Purpose Prize Award, which was created in 2005 by Encore.org, with funding from the John Templeton Foundation and The Atlantic Philanthropies, to showcase the value of experience and disprove outdated notions that innovation is the sole province of the young. It’s for those with the drive to make change and the experience to know how to do it. Don’s life experiences have enabled him to author several books addressing recovery, treatment, and prevention of alcoholism and substance abuse for adults, youth and families. He has been called upon to provide technical assistance by national policy organizations such as the White House Office of Drug Control Policy, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), as well as other national recovery organizations to develop prevention and recovery programs for Native American/Alaska Native communities. Don has dedicated his life to raising awareness about all issues surrounding alcohol and drug abuse, how it impacts the family system, and most importantly how families and communities can heal from these issues.

Carlos Rivera J.Carlos Rivera is the Executive Director at White Bison, Inc. located in Colorado Springs, CO. Carlos is an enrolled tribal member with the Sherwood Valley Band of Pomo Indians and is also of Mexican descent. He is originally from Northern Ca. but currently resides in Sioux Falls, SD with his family. Carlos, CADC-II, received his degree in Chemical Dependency Studies at the American River College. He served as a substance abuse treatment provider for 10-years at the Sacramento Native American Health Center, Inc. providing services to adult men and women on parole, juvenile offenders and other referrals from the Department of Corrections. He continues to make a difference in Native Tribal communities serving as the Executive Director for White Bison, Inc. In his role he oversees daily operations and is also passionate about developing new curriculum to better meet the needs of Native American/Alaska Native communities. Carlos has also been an active committee member for the Juvenile Justice & Delinquency State Committee for California, appointed by Governor Jerry Brown. Carlos has faced many adversities in his life that have ultimately guided him to build resiliency, discipline and a sense of direction in his life. Carlos grew up without a father or mother figure and became a ward of the court at age 13, resulting in him spending most of his adolescent years in treatment programs, group homes and Youth Authorities. Through the process of treatment and recovery Carlos found a greater purpose in life which inspired and motivated him to establish a healthy foundation for his family.

White Bison's Philosophy

We believe...

  • Mother Earth is governed by a set of Principles, Laws and Values
  • Leadership exists to serve the people first
  • Leadership existence is to ensure that information (Truth) is given to the people
  • Changes are the result of implementing Natural laws
  • All Native people believe in a  Supreme Being
  • In the Elders and teachings as a guiding force to direct ourselves, families and communities
  • That there is a natural order running the universe
  • That our traditional ways were knowledgeable about the natural order
  • When the community leads, the leaders will follow
  • Alcohol and drugs are destroying us and we want to recover
  • That change comes from within the individual, the family and the community
  • That within each person, family and community is the innate knowledge for well being
  • The solution resides within each community
  • Interconnectedness - it takes everyone to heal the community
  • Healing will take place through he application of cultural and spiritual knowledge
  • Alcohol is a symptom...not the cause, drugs are a symptom...not the cause, Domestic Violence is a symptom...not the cause.  To "heal a community" it needs to deal with the cause
  • That the Circle and the Four Directions are the Teachers
  • In the Four Laws of Change
  • Change is from within
  • In order for development to occur, it must be preceded by a vision
  • A great learning must take place
  • You must create a Healing Forest

White Bison Council of Elders

Meet the Elders

Ozzie Williamson, M.A. (Blackfeet) Ozzie has been with us since the beginning. Ozzie taught me to look forward. When this first started, I had doubts about what I was going to do, so I went to see Ozzie, and when I left there I never looked back. One of the stories that Ozzie tells is this: “When I walked down the trail with my grandmother, she always wore moccasins with a soft sole. If there happened to be a little stick on the trail, she would stop and kick it off the trail. One day I said, “Grandma, why do you always do that, why do you always stop and kick those things off the trail?” She said, “It just makes it easier for somebody else to come by.” I never realized until she was long gone years later that the things she tried to tell me were very similar to the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. What I heard in AA was similar to some of her teachings.”

Della Bad Wound Oglala Lakota - Employed in the human services field for 50 years working with women, children, youth and elderly. Her employment included the founding of Western South Dakota Senior Services in western South Dakota as the program director for 17 Nutrition sites for the elders. Denver Indian Health & Family Services, Winyan Wasaka-Women’s Alcohol Prevention Program, Seventh Generation Project, University of Denver; Elderhealth Program with Four World’s Development, Inc. in Lethbridge, Canada; and as a Native Sister with the Native American Cancer Research Project. She has been working with the documentation and preservation of the Lakota Language with the University of Colorado in Boulder for the past 6 years.
Della has one son, Michael and his significant other, one younger sister, one younger brother, many nieces and nephews, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Her extended family includes hunka sisters, hunka children and grandchildren. Hunka-making of a relative-adopted.

Dr. Henrietta Mann (N. Cheyenne) has been an integral part of the development of the Wellbriety family programs (Families of Tradition, Mothers of Tradition, Fathers of Tradition, Sons of Tradition and Daughters of Tradition). Her sharing of teachings of the Cycle of Life provided the framework for these trainings. After years as a professor and an advocate for Native sovereignty and wellness, Dr. Henrietta came out of retirement to start a the Cheyenne / Arapaho tribal community college. She does the ceremonies and songs. She also reminds us what we stand for: “We do not need to remain locked into those areas where we feel a great deal of anger and hostility to the dominant population because as White Bison says, we have to forgive the unforgivable. There are many that have and there are many who are yet to do that. Only when we forgive the unforgivable can we really say we are healing, that we have addressed that one aspect of our life. Saying we can forgive, now we can heal.”

White Bison Trainer Bios

Meet Our Trainers

Sparrow Goudey (Tsalagi/Cherokee/Wyandot) is the founder of Waya Nv-No-Hi (Wolf Road) Healing the Circle Workshops. With 25 years of continued sobriety, she has developed and conducts workshops for both Native and non-Native communities that assist adults and adolescents, affected by drugs, alcohol, eating disorders and mental illness by incorporating curriculum, traditional arts and spirituality as tools for change, growth and recovery. Sparrow is also a trainer for White Bison and the Wellbriety Training Institute. She facilitates Mending Broken Hearts, Medicine Wheel & 12 Steps, Mothers of Tradition, Daughters of Tradition and Wellbriety Celebrating Families curriculums and is devoted to helping individuals and communities that suffer from addiction and trauma.

Darryl Lickers a member of the Turtle Clan is originally from the Six Nations of the Grand River Mohawk Territory in southwestern Ontario Canada. He is of Tuscarora descent, and presently makes his home in Blackfalds, Alberta with his wife Karen. Darryl has recently retired from service with the Canadian Federal Government after 40+ years of service, both with the military (25 years) and his recent position with Corrections Canada as an Aboriginal Correctional Program Officer (23 years). On December 1st, 2015, Darryl completed his career at Pê Sâkâstêw Centre Healing Lodge in Mâskwâcîs, Alberta where he delivered substance abuse, family violence, violence prevention (In Search of Your Warrior) programs as well as White Bison programs Medicine Wheel & 12 Steps, Fathers of Tradition and Mending Broken Hearts. Darryl believes he is fulfilling his purpose in life as a helper by using his experiences and knowledge to help Native people heal from the effects of addiction and other abuses. Darryl has been a friend of Bill W. for the past 40 years (May 11, 1976). We are honoured to have Darryl as one of our Canadian trainers.

Andrea Alexander, is Seminole/Creek, a member of the Seminole nation of Oklahoma. She has provided training and consulted with tribal communities, state and private prisons, treatment centers, governmental agencies, and the recovery community at large. She is skilled in individual, group and family counseling specifically focusing on behavior related to substance use and/or criminal behavior, case management, treatment and discharge planning, assessment, liaison work with court systems. She is an experienced facilitator in Relapse Prevention, Early Recovery; both matrix models of treatment. Experience also includes inpatient treatment to sober living. She assisted in working with the implementation and operation of the Muscogee Creek Nation Reintegration Program for offender reentry, the first native American tribal reentry program, also, initiative coordinator at Seminole Nation of Oklahoma Methamphetamine and Suicide Prevention Initiative. From this, she gained experience with family, juvenile, adult and mental health special courts programs. She is an experienced Wellbriety Circles of Recovery program facilitator with White Bison, Inc. programs in a variety of settings She has a Bachelor of Arts-Sociology with a Substance Abuse Studies option-University of Central Oklahoma and an Associate in Applied Science-Alcohol & Substance Abuse Counseling-Oklahoma State University-OKC.

TANYA SCHUR, MA, is a Blackfeet-Métis mother of two grown children. She follows a cultural way of life and the traditional teachings of the medicine wheel under the guidance of elders from Blackfoot and Cree Nations. She is committed to Urban Indigenous Community Development and the empowerment of Indigenous people. She is a Health Rhythms ™ facilitator, Leadership on the Medicine Wheel facilitator, Emotional Intelligence and Diversity trainer, certified Mediator with Aiskapimohkiihs (Siksika Justice) and facilitates Medicine Wheel and 12 Steps at the Friendship Centre in Red Deer. She holds a MA in Leadership Studies from the Royal Roads University, Victoria. Her focus of research explored building cohesive teams from diverse work groups, transformational change, strategic planning, leadership development and organization design. Her work in program design has included facilitating Urban Aboriginal Pre-Employment Programs for the Red Deer Aboriginal Employment Services, creation of the Aboriginal Youth Leadership Certification and implementation of the Urban Aboriginal Voices Society urban governance model. Since completing the The Canadian Women’s Foundation Leadership Institute Tanya has turned her energy to designing the Community Development strategy for Asooahum Crossing Indigenous Cultural neighbourhood in Red Deer. Tanya is currently serving as the Director of Asooahum Crossing at the Red Deer Native Friendship Centre.


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White Bison - A sustainable grassroots Wellbriety Movement that provides culturally based healing to the next seven generations of Indigenous people.


Address: 6455 N. Union Blvd, Ste 102
Colorado Springs, CO 80918
Phone: 877-871-1495
Fax: 719-548-9407

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Board of Directors

BOD Member Henry C. Lozano has had the honor to serve on the White Bison Board of Directors for over 25 years. Henry is of Apache, Tarahumara, and European descent. He was named Deputy Assistant to the President and the Director to the USA Freedom Corps. Prior to his tenure as Director, he was appointed by President Bush and confirmed by the Senate to serve on the Board of Directors for the Corporation for National & Community Service. He was also appointed by President Clinton to serve on the President’s Advisory Commission on Drug-Free Communities and appointed as Co-Chair of the Commission by President Bush. He has served as a Senior Advisor to the Founder of U.N.I.T.Y. and currently serves on the Board of Trustees.

BOD Member Dan Griffin has worked in the mental health and addictions field for over two decades. He is recognized internationally as an expert on males and trauma. In the fall of 2015, Griffin was honored to be named as a senior fellow at The Meadows. He is the owner, founder, and lead consultant of Griffin Recovery Enterprises, Inc. He served as the state drug court coordinator for the Minnesota Drug Court Initiative, from 2002 to 2010, and was also the judicial branch’s expert on addiction and recovery. Griffin was awarded Hazelden’s first training fellowship for addiction counseling in 1998. He has worked in a variety of areas in the addictions field: research, case management, public advocacy, recovery courts, teaching, and counseling. Griffin’s latest book, A Man's Way through Relationships, is the first trauma-informed book written to help men create healthy relationships while navigating the challenges of internalizing the "Man Rules." Griffin is also the author, A Man’s Way through the Twelve Steps, is the first trauma-informed book to take a holistic look at men’s recovery. He also co-authored Helping Men Recover, the first comprehensive gender-responsive and trauma-informed curriculum for men. Griffin’s graduate work was centered on the social construction of masculinity in the culture of Alcoholics Anonymous. In 2012, Griffin was one of national experts invited by SAMHSA to help build a consensus definition of the terms “trauma” and “trauma-informed.” Griffin was a founding member of Faces and Voices of Recovery and served as a Minnesota delegate at the first National Recovery Summit in St. Paul in 2001. He served on SAMHSA’s National Recovery Month Committee for over ten years. In 2004, Griffin was one of 100 experts invited from around the country to create a consensus definition of recovery from addiction for SAMHSA. Griffin helped to start the first recovery advocacy organization in Minnesota, RecoveryWorks, in 2001. The President’s Award winner in 2006 for leadership in the addiction and recovery field in Minnesota, Griffin lives in Minnesota with his wife, Nancy, and his daughter, Grace, and has been in long-term recovery since he graduated college in May of 1994. Dan’s areas of expertise include: men’s issues, trauma and trauma-informed services, addiction and recovery, recovery courts and other treatment courts, working with and understanding the twelve step culture, and the special needs of young people in recovery.

BOD Member Marlin Farley is from the White Earth Reservation in northwest Minnesota. He has over 27 years of experience in working in the fields of adolescent treatment of emotional/behavioral disorders, family based social work, chemical dependency, restorative justice practices, and as a trainer/consultant in the wellness field. He is the president of Black Stone Consulting. Marlin is also a film producer/director and is the principal owner of Painted Sky Productions. Marlin is a board member and Master Trainer for White Bison Inc. and is a leader in the national Wellbriety Movement.