Alan Tafoya ~ Jicarilla Apache

Published on September 23, 2013 by Amy

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Alan Tafoya
Alan Tafoya

Alan Tafoya (born June 12, 1963) is an American actor and musician of the Jicarilla Apache nation. He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.

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Life and career

Tafoya was born on the Jicarilla Apache reservation in Dulce, New Mexico and lived there until moving to Los Angeles in 2010. He is a fourth generation descendant of the Apache chief Mangas Coloradas, and maintains a spiritual connection to his ancestry through the martial art of knife fighting. He is most well known to American audiences for his appearances on the Spike TV television program Deadliest Warrior, as the nominal Apache in the “Gladiator vs. Apache” episodes, aired in 2009.

Tafoya served as acting police chief for the Jicarilla nation after the death of his father in March 2000. He married Noraleen Vicenti in 1985, with whom he has four children. The couple later divorced, and Tafoya married fellow actor Cynthia Strauss on September 26, 2010.

In addition to his acting roles, Tafoya plays the guitar and composes original music. He is currently at work on a CD entitled Moments Locked in Time.


  • 2011 Horro Torium (short, currently filming) — Mohican
  • 2010 Ink: A Tale of Captivity (currently in post-production) — James Printer
  • 2010 MacGruber—Charging Guard
  • 2009 Outlaw Justice—Apache
  • 2009 Life’s Blood (short) — Hector
  • 2008 The Unfound (short) — Guard
  • 2008 Las Vegas New Mexico 1875 (short) — Tafoya (voice)
  • 2007 Army Men (short) — Abachi
  • 2002 Groom Lake—Shaman #1
  • 2001 Maniacts—Gang Guy (as Alan R. Tafoya)


  • 2009 Deadliest Warrior (TV series documentary), Gladiator vs. Apache—Himself (World Champion Knife Fighter)
  • 2009 Special Ops Mission (TV series) — Tracker
  • 2008 Comanche Moon (TV mini-series)– Peta Nacona
  • 2005 Dancing on the Edge (documentary short) — Himself
  • 2000 The Lost Child (TV movie) — Bus driver

Source: wikipedia Unabridged
Based on the collective work of, © 2014 Native American Encyclopedia.
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