Classmate Reveals Shock at Discovering Lauren Salzman’s Dark Turn into NXIVM Cult; But May Not Know She Sunk Raniere

A feature story in BoredPanda, entitled “30 People Reveal The Most Surprising Transformations They’ve Seen From Former Classmates At High School Reunions,” includes an account from someone who knew Lauren Salzman, from the 3rd grade through high school.

The daughter of NXIVM’s president Nancy Salzman, Lauren was the director of education and a First Line slave of Keith Raniere in DOS,.

The classmate was shocked to discover, upon reconnecting at the 2o-year high school reunion, that Lauren was deeply involved in the notorious NXIVM cult.

Her schoolmate wrote of her:

I went to my twentieth [high school reunion] about five years ago. The woman [Lauren] organizing the event was in my class since 3rd grade, and was always bright, intelligent, charming and pretty.

She was very active in high school and by all counts had a very bright future.

Speaking to her at the reunion, it seemed that had happened for her. We talked about her self help/life coaching company and how they are growing and doing great. I asked her to send me more information when I got home (which is on the other side of the country).

I got an email from her introducing me to her west coast partner who’s email was from the url which I thought sounded very contrary to what I was expecting.

A quick look at their web site had me immediately worried and a short google later I saw that they are an offshoot of the NXIVM cult that has been all over the news.

The woman I was talking to, that I knew since age 8, was Lauren Salzman, who just this week pleaded guilty to holding two sex slaves locked in a room for two years.

She was trying to recruit me and basically everyone at the reunion into NXIVM! I ‘noped’ right out of that email conversation and have been watching everything unfold for the last five years. They are all looking at some serious jail time now.

Lauren Salzman and Allison Mack

Lauren pleaded guilty to racketeering and racketeering conspiracy charges in April 2019. She cooperated with the government’s investigation and was the sole cooperating witness for the prosecution.

Lauren testified for four days at Raniere’s 2019 trial. Her emotional account detailing years of abuse was instrumental in securing Raniere’s conviction on multiple counts, including sex trafficking and racketeering.

The judge stopped her cross-examination, fearing she might have a breakdown, when Ranier’s attorney asked her if she meant to harm others. This led to Raniere’s appeal based on the due process issue of the right to confrontation of witnesses and the prejudicial effect it might have had on the jury.

Lauren Salzman and Keith Raniere

Judge Nichalos G. Garaufis sentenced Raniere to 120 years.

Before her sentencing, where she faced more than a decade in prison, Salzman wrote to the judge, “I do not have enough tears for how deeply sad, ashamed and regretful I feel.”

Prosecutors requested a reduced prison sentence for Salzman because of her “credible, detailed testimony”, noting that she even provided evidence against her friends, family and mother.

At her sentencing, her defense team cited her ongoing efforts to turn her life around, including undergoing therapy and her new-found work as a dog groomer. 

Lauren Salzman in a recent photo….

Judge Garaufis citing Salzman’s “central” role in the prosecution of Raniere and her long victimization by him, sentenced her to five years probation and 300 hours of community service.




About the author

Frank Parlato


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  • They are all bimbos. Lauren, Michelle, Nancy, Claire, Sara, Allison, Nicky, and so on. Keith knew that, otherwise, they wouldn’t have been there.

  • How was (is) the relationship between Nancy and Clare? Did they like or despise each other? Allies and friends, or jealous of each other’s relationship with Keith? Guess what I’m asking is, Is there a chance these two would team up for a resurrected Executive Success Program after Clare gets out?

  • Lauren is a narcissist. She does well in life because she is an amazing bullshit artist with a smile. She has a high IQ and very aware of her actions.

  • She is #1 og Clare’s hit list.

    As much i don’t care for Lauren, I do worry Clare will have her killed. Lauren betrayed Squarefoot. Clare is infuriated she busted up their immigration fraud ring.

    • Nah….Lauren is fine. Lauren and her sister Michelle are just narcissist spoiled brats. Clare won’t waste her time with two scumbags.

      • Why not? She wasted her time–and money–with one massive scumbag. So what’s the diff? One gigantic scumbag she can no longer cohort with, or two smaller scumbags she can team up with?

    • After spending that much time behind bars, I doubt Clare will have a list to attack anymore. There’s too many to waste time on
      Sarah, Lauren, Nancy, Sylvie, Mark, Nippy, India.
      I think she will leave with the sunset

  • She looks rested and healthy in this recent photograph. Those Salvation Army boxes in the back don’t accidentally contain bundles of dollars I presume?

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

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Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083


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