A graduate of Cornell University, Lorna Salzman has been an environmental activist, writer, lecturer and organizer for over fifty years. In the early 1970s, under the auspices of Citizens for Local Democracy, co-founded by the late Walter Karp, she edited a Brooklyn Heights NY community paper, The Township, dedicated to neighborhood government and political decentralization.
Later she was hired by the late David Brower, founder and president of Friends of the Earth (FOE), as the regional representative of FOE and held that position for nearly ten years, concentrating on anti-nuclear work and on coastal zone and wetlands protection on eastern Long Island.
She initiated the Shoreham Opponents Coalition on Long Island, which ultimately defeated the Shoreham nuclear reactor, and represented Southampton Town in state hearings on the Jamesport reactor, which was later cancelled. In New York City she organized public opposition to the transport of high-level radioactive waste from the Brookhaven National Laboratory on Long Island through New York City; eventually the city enacted a ban on such transport.
She was also active in the movement to save the Long Island Pine Barrens, which overlie Long Island's drinking water supply, and served on the New York State Dept. of Environmental Conservation's Pine Barrens Task Force as well as on the board of directors of the Long Island Pine Barrens Society. Her work on habitat protection was instrumental in the preservation of two key habitats in Suffolk County (Maple Swamp and Swan Pond) .She also served on the board of directors of STAR (Standing for Truth About Radiation).
In the mid-1980s she was an editor at American Birds magazine, published by the National Audubon Society, and soon after became Executive Director of Food & Water Inc., an anti-food irradiation group. From 1992 to 1995 she was a natural resources specialist in the Natural Resources Unit of the NYC Dept. of Environmental Protection, where she worked primarily on monitoring and protecting city-owned wetlands and coastal areas on Staten Island.
In 1985 she co-founded the New York Greens, later called the NY Green Party, and in the late 1990s she ran for Congress and the US Senate on the Peconic Greens and Green Choice parties respectively. In 2002, she was the Green Party candidate for the US House of Representatives in the 1st CD, Suffolk County, Long Island NY. In 2004 she sought the US Green Party's nomination for president.
In addition to her numerous published articles in such publications as The Ecologist, Business & Society Review, New English Review, Humanist Perspectives, Index on Censorship and New Politics (all available on her web site), she has lectured extensively at major universities and private schools in the New York and New Jersey region and participated frequently in radio and TV panel discussions and debates.
In 2000 she received the International Earth Day Award from the Earth Society Foundation for her environmental writing and activism. She is the author of "Politics as if Evolution Mattered", a set of essays on the interaction of evolutionary thought with social and political issues, and "Darkness in Academia: The Shadow of Stalin" in Humanist Perspectives, #186, a critique of cultural determinism and post-modern anti-science attitudes. Salzman was nominated one of two runner-ups in the Sierra Club's 2016 EnviroSHEroes social media contest. Her husband, composer Eric Salzman, died in 2017.