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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Dolezal keeps quiet as questions persist

Questions surrounding Spokane’s embattled NAACP president Rachel Dolezal continued to mount Friday as the black man she claims is her father seemed to imply otherwise. Albert Wilkerson Jr., who used to live in North Idaho and volunteered at the Human Rights Education Institute where Dolezal worked, said during a brief phone call Friday that he has “nothing negative to say about Rachel” but was reluctant to get involved in the controversy.

College activists divided on response

Disclosures that Rachel Dolezal, a prominent Spokane civil rights activist and president of the Spokane chapter of the NAACP, may have engaged in a ruse to present herself as a black woman despite having white parents has incited differing and often opposite reactions from leaders of local universities, black student unions and her former students. Satori Butler , the president of Eastern Washington University’s Black Student Union, doesn’t think Dolezal’s race should matter. Butler knows Dolezal personally and considers her a mentor. She doesn’t recall Dolezal ever labeling herself as black, nor did Butler ask.

Spokane police: investigation into Rachel Dolezal hate mail now closed

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Spokane police said Friday they’re no longer investigating racial harassment claims made by Rachel Dolezal, the head of a local NAACP chapter whose integrity was thrown into question when her mother said she’s a white woman pretending to be black.

The second “War Pigs” letter sent to Dolezal was an apology, not a threat

Much of the recent news about local NAACP President Rachel Dolezal was sparked by the news that a letter allegedly dropped in the NAACP's P.O. box had no postal date stamp or barcode, raising questions about whether the letter had been delivered to the P.O. box at all. Forensics did reveal some unidentifiable male DNA on the letter, but as of yesterday, the Spokane police suspended the case pending further investigation.

National office of NAACP stands behind Rachel Dolezal

The national office of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is standing behind Rachel Dolezal, the embattled Spokane chapter leader under fire for representing herself as a black women and using that status to gain prominence when her family claims she is white.

Spokane NAACP president Rachel Dolezal’s claims about background disputed

Controversy is swirling around one of the Inland Northwest’s most prominent civil rights activists, with family members of Rachel Dolezal saying the local leader of the NAACP has been falsely portraying herself as black for years. Dolezal, 37, avoided answering questions directly about her race and ethnicity Thursday, saying, “I feel like I owe my executive committee a conversation” before engaging in a broader discussion with the community about what she described as a “multilayered” issue.

Updated: Credibility of local NAACP leader questioned

Controversy is swirling around one of the Inland Northwest’s most prominent civil rights activists, with family members of Rachel Dolezal saying the local leader of the NAACP has been falsely portraying herself as black for years. Do you think these allegations have undermined Dolezal's ability to lead the NAACP?

Cda Press: Dolezal, Black like me?

COEUR d'ALENE - She's risen from North Idaho civil rights champion to positions of power in Spokane as a self-described black woman. But what if Rachel Dolezal is really white? Dolezal, chair of Spokane's Office of Police Ombudsman Commission and president of the city's chapter of the NAACP, has made claims in the media and elsewhere about her ethnicity, race and background that are contradicted by her biological parents.

Questions raised about NAACP hate mail

Looks like NAACP Spokane chapter president Rachel Dolezal will top the local news today. You may remember she was onced employed by the HREI in Cda and reported several threatening incidents. Now, KXLY has launched an investigation into her most recent report of hate mail and uncovered some troubling questions.

New NAACP leaders bring growth, fresh approach

On move-in day, the new office for Spokane’s NAACP was humming with activity. Two young men in the corner of the room had a wide-ranging conversation about everything from Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman to the Black Lives Matter movement, while other members put together a bookshelf or dropped in to see the new space.

100 Spokane marchers peacefully protest Ferguson decision

About 100 people marched through downtown Spokane chanting “Hands up, don’t shoot,” Tuesday evening to show their support for the community of Ferguson, Missouri. Tuesday’s march organized by the Spokane branch of the NAACP was peaceful, in contrast to the rioting in Ferguson this week after a grand jury’s decision not to indict a white police officer for the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, an unarmed black man.

About 100 protest Ferguson decision in Spokane NAACP rally

About 100 people of all races turned out for a NAACP rally in downtown Spokane Tuesday, marching down sidewalks and chanting “Hands up, don’t shoot,” to show their support of the community of Ferguson, Missouri.

Spokane NAACP elects new president

The local NAACP has a new leader. Rachel Dolezal, formerly the director of the Human Rights Education Institute in North Idaho, was elected president of the Spokane NAACP last week in a contested race with incumbent James Wilburn.

Fighting the pipeline

Labor is a commodity, says Judge Joe Brown, and in these days of surplus – too many workers for too few jobs – it’s a commodity that has to be stored somewhere. Like grain is kept in bins, Brown said in an interview this week before scheduled appearances in Spokane, the workers who aren’t working are kept in jails and prisons. The American justice system has transformed from “a crime control device to a system to control surplus labor,” he said.

V. Anne Smith, known for civil rights efforts in Spokane, dies

V. Anne Smith, a little woman with a loud voice and a big heart who led the Spokane chapter of the NAACP for 10 years, died Monday. Smith, 79, was active in civil rights, women’s rights, education and community improvement in Spokane for more than 40 years.

For NAACP’s new leader, education is empowering

College didn’t work out  his first time around. So years ago, James Wilburn, inaugurated last weekend as the president of Spokane’s branch of the NAACP, got down to educating himself. Born and raised in Arkansas – his first 12 years lived under the Jim Crow laws, with “colored-only” drinking fountains, restrooms and schools – he didn’t know many white people. He’d never been called the n-word as many times in all his previous years put together, he said, as he was that first year at Arkansas State University-Beebe. Suspended for fighting, he left after his first year.