'False claim to Native American heritage'
Pechanga Band of Indians takes stand against noted educator
October 7, 2022
A prominent tribe with powerful connections has taken the unusual step of denouncing an educator and scholar who has long identified herself as a descendant of the community.
In an August 15 statement that was first shared on social media, leaders of the Pechanga Band of Indians said Dr. Joely Proudfit lacks ties to their tribe, based in southern California. The wording in the document leaves no doubt about the tribal council's stance.
"For the record, Joely De La Torre Proudfit is not an enrolled member at Pechanga, has never been enrolled at Pechanga, and has never been recognized as a member of the Pechanga Band of Indians," the statement on official tribal letterhead reads.