Home / National News / Rachel Dolezal Postpones Monday Meeting and Statement on Ethnicity


(SPOKANE, Wash.) — Rachel Dolezal, the president of Spokane, Washington’s NAACP chapter, has postponed Monday’s monthly NAACP membership meeting, where she had planned to make a statement regarding the “questions and assumptions swirling in national and global news about my family, my race, my credibility, and the NAACP.”

Dolezal said in an emailed statement Sunday: “Due to the need to continue discussion with regional and national NAACP leaders, tomorrow’s meeting is postponed and will be rescheduled for a later date. We appreciate your patience and understanding at this time.”

“There are many layers to this situation,” Dolezal said in her original statement, sent via email Friday night. “There are questions and assumptions swirling in national and global news about my family, my race, my credibility, and the NAACP. I have discussed the situation, including personal matters, with the Executive Committee. I support their decision to wait until Monday to make a statement. The Executive team asked that I also release my response statement at the same time, which will be during the 7-9 pm monthly membership meeting.”

For years, Dolezal, 37, has identified herself publicly as African American. When applying for a spot on Spokane’s Police Ombudsman Commission — of which she is now chairwoman — Dolezal identified herself as white, black and American Indian, ABC News affiliate KXLY-TV in Spokane reported.

But her parents, Ruthanne and Lawrence Dolezal, told Nightline via Skype that Rachel is their biological daughter and they are both white.

Lawrence Dolezal said they have two biological children including Rachel. They also have four adopted children who are African American.

“But Rachel is clearly white as we are,” Lawrence Dolezal said.

“She has not explained to us why she has disguised herself and been deceptive about her ethnicity, so we can’t explain to you,” Ruthanne Dolezal said.

Rachel Dolezal received her master’s degree from the historically black Howard University, according to her biography on the Eastern Washington University website. She is now an adjunct professor in the Africana Studies program at Eastern Washington University, where she teaches African and African American Art History, African History, African American Culture, The Black Woman’s Struggle and Intro to Africana Studies, according to her university bio.

Her work focuses on “race, gender and class in the contemporary Diaspora with a specific emphasis on Black women in visual culture,” her university bio said.

“We’ve always supported her activism for justice and equality,” Ruthanne Dolezal added. “But this deceptive side and the way she’s tried to represent herself as someone she is not. that is what is concerning to us.”

“She is so assimilated into their culture and their community that she may falsely consider herself African American,” Lawrence Dolezal said. “But by birth she certainly is not.”

ABC News’ attempts to reach Rachel Dolezal Sunday were unsuccessful.



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