Rincon Tribe to Donate Over $85,000 to Local Organizations

Tribe continues its commitment of giving

WHO: Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians

WHAT: Please join the Rincon Tribe as they recognize organizations and charities who are improving lives through
education, veterans assistance, small business advocacy and legal representation.

“With all that is going on in the world today, our neighbors and communities need us to step up and help in any way we can,” stated Chairman Bo Mazzetti of the Rincon Tribe. “During these difficult times, the Rincon people are proud and humbled to be able to continue and even expand our tradition of giving and sharing with others. We hope to positively impact the lives of many families through these donations.”

Final Honor, The Burn Institute, K9 Companions, Oceanside Chamber – Harbor Days and CA Indian Legal Services will all be receiving donations to help support their important local programs. “This funding is absolutely critical for us to maintain our vitally important services,” said Suzanne Porter of Final Honor. “We are deeply grateful to the people of Rincon for this most generous donation.”

Monday, September 13, 2021 10:30am

Rincon Government Center
One Government Center Lane
Valley Center, CA 92082

About the Rincon Tribe

The Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians is a sovereign government recognized by the United States of America. The Tribe
owns Harrah’s Resort Southern California and uses profits from this and other commercial enterprises to provide
government services including police and environmental enforcement; economic development; healthcare and culture
programs; and a tribal court. At no cost to taxpayers, Rincon’s public safety operations respond to emergencies in the neighboring communities, with more than a majority of calls generating outside the Reservation. Rincon’s tribal
enterprises are significant contributors to the North San Diego County economy through job creation, tax generation,
purchase of local products and services and charitable donations. www.rincon-nsn.gov

Wills Clinic

July 21 – 23, 2021

The Tribal Council has contracted with California Indian Legal Services (CILS) Escondido Office to provide free services to Rincon Band members who attend the Wills Clinic.

Community Spotlight: Elizabeth FastHorse

Passion is the Driving Force Behind Elizabeth FastHorse Success

Elizabeth Fasthorse

Rincon Tribal member Elizabeth (Piper) FastHorse is a PhD student in Education at UCLA. She was born to parents Emily (Paipa) Piper Kolb and Ralph Pico, a Rincon Tribal Member. She spent her early years growing up in Rincon but for a time she lived in Pomacha (La Jolla) in a little adobe house with no electricity. In that house her grandmother, Florentina Lara (Paipa) Piper, raised her, and taught her traditions, culture and language. It was emphasized to Elizabeth that education and learning were important. Her grandmother always encouraged her to go to “school.” Elizabeth pays tribute to her grandmother for this encouragement and teaching of her culture, language and traditions.

Elizabeth never really thought about going to college because no one in the schools ever talked to her about that being an option. She knew she wanted to continue in school but did not know how to do it. So, she just focused on graduating. In her early years she went to Pala Mission school before she went to attend St Catherine Indian boarding school in Santa Fe, New Mexico when she was fourteen.

The will to go to college was there, but Elizabeth had never been taught how to go to college or how to do college. In her early school days, she says she felt invisible. The Pala school never talked about Native people in the curriculum and it was as if Native students did not matter. College, of course, was never even discussed with the students. When she attended St. Catherine’s; however, it was the first time she felt like she belonged, where Native people were acknowledged and appreciated. That acknowledgement was crucial, it gave her a sense that she did belong, that she was important and could have a voice in her future. Unfortunately, due to her grandmothers’ passing, she had to come back home. As a result, she attended more high schools that made her feel invisible.

After her grandmother’s passing Elizabeth moved to Los Angeles with her mother and finished high school at Bell High School, Bell, CA. Elizabeth went on in her life, and she worked for Warner/Chappell Music a subsidiary of Warner Music Group. Elizabeth’s supervisor encouraged her and became a mentor to her and continued to push her and often said, “Elizabeth, go to school.” Her boss saw her potential and believed in her, and gave her the push she needed. She did go to school, starting at Rio Hondo community college in 2004 where she became immersed in college life and active on campus. She learned that her secret to success was to always take at least one course in something you love along with the other required courses. It must have worked because she ended up an honor student who was then able to transfer to UCLA applying as an American Indian Studies major.

Throughout her time at UCLA Elizabeth has studied American Indian Studies and Education. It was not her original intention to go beyond a Bachelor’s degree but the people she met saw her potential and they supported her and helped her feel that she belonged. Many students of color suffer from what is called Imposter Syndrome, which makes the student feel like they really don’t belong there. Elizabeth was one of those students. She was fortunate, however, to have a strong support group who encouraged her and as she read more books by indigenous scholars, she realized not only did she belong there, but her voice was needed in academia because Native voices need to be heard. Eventually, after many hurdles, and two Master’s Degrees later, she was accepted to a PhD program at UCLA where she currently is today. When asked what she wanted to do with her education Elizabeth talked about her three goals of teaching, research and advocacy in K-12 education. “I am passionate about the importance of language immersion and culturally specific academics that are currently absent in K-12 education,“ Elizabeth stated. She feels that students need to be acknowledged in their school so they feel like they belong.

When asked what advice she would give to Native high school students she said, “I would encourage them to use their voice in their classrooms. I believe that being heard and standing up for what you believe is very important. That acknowledgement of a student’s ideas and views is crucial to success.” It certainly has been for the soon to be Dr. Elizabeth FastHorse.

Editor’s Note:  It is the policy of the Rincon Voice to correct any error. The Community Spotlight article on page 47 in the Spring/Summer 2021 edition of the Rincon Voice titled “Passion is the Driving Force Behind Elizabeth FastHorse Success” contained incorrect information.  The article has been updated to state Elizabeth was raised by Florentina Lara (Paipa) Piper.

Rincon Reservation Ready to Conserve More Water Through Conservation Project

From the Spring/Summer 2021 issue of the Rincon Voice

Three-quarters of the earth’s surface is covered with water, so it might appear that there is plenty to go around and that we will never run out of this valuable resource. In reality, however, there is only a limited amount of usable fresh water.

According to the U.S. EPA, over 97 percent of the earth’s water is found in the oceans as salt water. Two percent of the earth’s water is relatively inaccessible for human use and is stored as fresh water in glaciers, ice caps, and snowy mountain ranges. That leaves a mere one percent of the earth’s water available to us for our daily water supply needs.

Almost all of the of Earth’s freshwater resource is groundwater. This subterranean water emerges at the surface to feed streams and saturate wetlands. Groundwater provides a critical reservoir that can be tapped for agricultural, industrial, and environmental uses as well as for drinking water supply.

This is why water conservation is of great importance and is something that everyone on the Rincon Reservation should actively be doing.

A hose bibb is the outdoor water faucet protruding from your house that you hook your garden hose to. Leaky hose bibs have been a noticeable problem for years all over the reservation. Sometimes it’s easy to think “oh it’s only a few drops, that can’t be too much in the grand scheme of things”. This is not true. These small leaks can add up to a big loss of water.

A home with two outside spigots leaking at a slow rate of 20 drips per minute totals up to 57,600 drips of water wasted per day.

  • 57,600 drips of water per day equals 5 gallons of water wasted every day through outside spigots leaking.
  • Over the course of a single year in this home, outside spigots leaking will result in 1,851 gallons of water being wasted.
  • For all of the customers of Rincon’s two public water systems on the reservation, this could collectively result in up to 481,260 gallons of water being wasted per year!

Over time, a leaking hose bibb can even cause water damage to your home’s foundation, which will turn into a much larger and more expensive repair. It also has the potential to contribute to mold and mildew growth. Therefore, it is imperative that we act to prevent the wasting of this precious, limited resource.

To combat the loss of water through leaky hose bibbs, the Rincon Environmental Department has obtained grant funding to pay for the replacement and installation of new hose bibbs with backflow prevention for all residential and commercial customers of Rincon’s two public water systems.

According to Camille Merchant, Rincon Environmental Director, “Some homeowners will dismiss a leaking hose bibb as nothing more than an annoyance, but even outside hose bibbs leaking slowly are a cause for concern. Slow drips are responsible for thousands of gallons of water waste each year”.

Each residential and commercial customer of the Northern and Paradise Creek public water systems will receive up to 3 replacement hose bibbs installed by the tribe at no cost to them. These replacement hose bibbs will have backflow prevention, which will protect the tribe’s wells, and will help to significantly reduce water loss through leakage.

Installation of the new hose bibs are anticipated to take place for customers of the Tribe’s Northern System throughout this Summer and installation of the new hose bibbs are anticipated to occur for customers of the Paradise Creek System are anticipated to take place throughout the Fall. Rincon’s General Services will oversee the installations. More detailed information will be provided to customers by mail in the weeks leading up to those installation times.

Rincon Tribe Partners with UC San Diego Health to Offer All Employees the Covid-19 Vaccine

Valley Center, CA… The Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians announced today that they will be offering the Covid-19 Vaccine to all Government employees, Harrah’s Resort SoCal employees and tribal members on Friday, April 9, 2021 from 7:00am – 3:00pm at the Rincon Government Center located at One Government Center Lane in Valley Center. 

“It is our continued goal to protect the health and safety of all of our employees and our tribal people,” stated Chairman Bo Mazzetti of the Rincon Tribe.  “We are encouraging all of our employees and tribal members to receive the vaccine to ensure their health and well-being. We are committed to our employees and strongly believe it is our responsibility to establish a safe working environment.”

“A pillar in the San Diego community, the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians continue to support and stand behind our team and our extended family at Harrah’s Resort SoCal, as they have throughout the pandemic,” said Robert Livingston General Manager of Harrah’s Resort SoCal.  “The Tribe continues to champion the health and prosperity of Funner, California, and this community vaccination initiative is just one more example of that dedication to our community. We hope this significant step brings us one leap closer to being able to return to pre-Covid operations.”

UC San Diego Health will be administering vaccines to all interested employees over the age of 18.  Strong confidence in vaccines within communities leads to more people getting vaccinated, which leads to fewer Covid- illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths.   “Whoever thought a little virus would teach us humility?  Whoever thought a little virus would show us how much we will miss our loved ones?  Whoever thought a little virus would teach us how much we would miss our way of life prior to the pandemic?  Whoever thought a little virus would highlight the inequality of the populations impacted by this pandemic?  Whoever thought a little virus would teach us that collaboration and teamwork are the only way to beat it?  Whoever thought a village could accomplish so much against this invisible foe?  These community partnerships like the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians and UC San Diego Health is the village to take the steps back to some sense of normal,” expressed Lydia Ikeda, Sr. Director, COVID Operations for UCSD Health.

“Rincon was the first tribe in California to work with local county officials to develop a Memorandum of Understanding early in the pandemic and we continue to help in turning the curve by offering the vaccination clinic,” said Vice Chair Tishmall Turner of the Rincon Tribe.  “We are thankful to the partnership with UCSD Health to be able to offer the clinic onsite.”


The Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians is a sovereign government recognized by the United States of America. The Tribe owns Harrah’s Resort Southern California and uses profits from this and other commercial enterprises to provide government services including police and law enforcement; economic development; healthcare and culture programs; and a tribal court.