Well, look at what we have here. Another white college professor pretending to be something she’s not. Seems like imposter syndrome is rampant nowadays.
In September, Dartmouth appointed Susan Taffe Reed as director of its Native American Program. She has an extensive academic background which includes a Cornell University Ph.D. and postdocs at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Bowdoin College. Reed also stated that she is president of Eastern Delaware Nations Inc.
But what people failed to realize is that the Eastern Delaware Nations Inc. is not a recognized tribe and Native American students called the university out. And once that happened, people started researching Reed’s background.
If Dartmouth expected applause for hiring someone with a strong academic background and a personal background that would appeal to its Native American students, whom the program serves, it was mistaken.
Reed said she got her Native American background from her grandparents, but a site’s research found out that they are white European immigrants.
People took to Dartmouth’s Facebook site and left comments like:
“Congratulations Dartmouth on hiring your very own Rachel Dolezal as the director of the Native American Program. Susan Taffe Reed is not a member of a federally recognized tribe nor does she have legitimate Native American ancestry.”
On Thursday, the college removed Reed from her position.
A college spokesperson told the Valley News that “the distraction around her appointment prevents her from effectively serving in this role. It does not prevent her from contributing to Dartmouth in other ways and we are currently exploring opportunities with her.”
But Reed still asserts her Native American background.
“My Native and non-Native family members raised me to know about my ancestry, including our family’s oral history and traditions that have been passed down for generations,” she said in an email to the WSJ. “I have participated in Native American ceremonies and powwow dancing since I was a little girl.”
Well maybe your family lied. Because according to real Native Americans, the Eastern Delaware Nation is filled with “pretendians”.
“They basically just formed their own nation and have been playing this role-playing game ever since,” Jacqueline Keeler, a Native American Dartmouth alum told the WSJ.