Rachel Dolezal, the former NAACP Spokane chapter president who made headlines in 2015 when she was revealed to be a white woman pretending to be black, lamented in an interview this week that she has been struggling to find work for six years.
Dolezal, who has gone by the Nigerian name Nkechi Amare Diallo since 2016, spoke with the “Tamron Hall Show” on Monday to discuss the lingering fallout from her race-faking, as well as her dismal employment prospects. She sported braids during the interview while sitting in front of a large map of Africa.
“Well, it is really tough, you know, to relive that every day and every week, as you said,” Dolezal said regarding the fact her name is associated with the stories about her pretending to be black. “Whatever the case, if somebody’s name comes up attached to what people feel is a problematic identity, then I’m hashtagged, and there are memes, you know, Kamala Dolezal, all these kind of things that have been created that come my way and I’m tagged in.”
Dolezal, who taught Africana studies at Eastern Washington University until being outed as a white woman, then said she wishes more people could see her “more for who I am than the what.”
Describing herself as a mother, an activist, and an artist, Dolezal said, “When it comes to race and identity, I’ve always identified racially as human, but have found more of a home in black culture, in the black community.”
“And that hasn’t changed,” Dolezal added. “I’m still the same person I was in May of 2015, I’m still doing the work, I’m still pressing forward, but it has been really tough for sure.”
After discussing the fallout from the revelation that she is, in fact, not black, Dolezal explained how she has since struggled to find employment.
“I started with applying for all of the things I was qualified for, and after interviews and getting turned down, I even applied to jobs that didn’t even require degrees, being a maid at a hotel, working at a casino,” Dolezal told Hall.
“I wasn’t able to get any of those jobs either,” she added.
Dolezal said she faced a disadvantage in the job market because much of the information available about her online is allegedly “inaccurate,” for which reason she plugged her autobiography, “In Full Color: Finding My Place in a Black and White World,” which was panned by critics. “Like, the only place that my true story lives is in my book,” she said.
“I think that people, you know, aren’t going to go seek out my book if they’re just looking for an employee, so it’s been tough for sure, but I have not given up.”