2024 Spirit of Stonewall Rally Speaker

EricaErica Pinto (she/her)

Erica M. Pinto currently serves as Chairwoman of the Jamul Indian Village of California, one of the 13 tribes of the Kumeyaay Nation who trace their roots back over 12,000 years in San Diego County, California. Her extensive executive experience gives her a sophisticated grasp on even the most complex aspects of tribal governance.

Ms. Pinto has been involved with the JIV Tribal Council since 1997, becoming a Council Member at the age of 21. Serving for more than 23 years on the Council, she was appointed Vice Chair of the Tribal Council in 2008. In 2015, she was the first woman elected Chairwoman of the Jamul Indian Village, an honor she proudly holds today.

Since becoming Chairwoman, Ms. Pinto has lead JIV through significant economic progress on their path to self-reliance. In April 2016, JIV signed an agreement with San Diego County that cleared the way for a world-class gaming facility to be constructed on their reservation. In August 2016, along with the Tribal Council amended the 1999 compact with California. In October 2016, Hollywood Casino Jamul-San Diego opened, creating nearly 1,000 permanent jobs for members of the Tribe and the surrounding region. As part of the Tribe’s commitment to self-reliance she was instrumental in negotiating and representing the Tribe with its local agreements that will provide more than $100 million public benefit and safety for the residents of San Diego County. She continues working to expand the Tribe’s land base and increase economic opportunities.

Ms. Pinto is committed to giving back to her community and to future generations of Tribal members. She is co-founder of the Acorn to Oaks tribal program, which organizes activities focused on culture,

youth development, health and fitness, and technology – all designed to help prevent drug and alcohol abuse, teen pregnancy, as well as to promote education and family togetherness. She hopes to build pride in future tribal leaders, so they respect their native heritage.

Ms. Pinto’s leadership extends well beyond the JIV. She serves as Vice-President on the board of the Southern California Tribal Chairman’s Association. She is Chairwoman of the Board of the Southern Indian Health Council. She sits on the Transportation Committee at SANDAG and is Co-chair of the Interagency Technical Working Group on Tribal Transportation Issues as well as Chairwoman of the Native American Advisory Committee (NAAC). In 2015, she received the Women in Leadership award from the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce, in 2020 she received the Warrior Award from the American Indian Chamber of Commerce and was a 2020 Honoree by Discovery Magazine and San Diego International Film Festival as one the Power Women in San Diego.

Born in El Paso, Texas, Ms. Pinto grew up with her three brothers on the Jamul Indian Village reservation and Viejas reservation, where she witnessed the hardships on her people. Her mother, who has been active in Tribal government for several decades, instilled in her the importance of respecting our ancestors and giving back to the Tribe, lessons she carries with her to this day.

Stonewall Rally Speakers & Performers Rally