CultNews recently exposed a misleading brochure produced by “NXIVM” (pronounced nexium, like the acid relief medication), a group that has been called a “cult.”

NXIVM is the brainchild of Keith Raniere, but its titular head is his devoted disciple Nancy Salzman.

The NXIVM brochure stated, “Nancy Salzman (highlighted in this year’s O magazine), one of the world’s top trainers in the field of human potential.”

Readers might conclude that Salzman was “highlighted” in O Oprah Magazine for her touted training expertise.

However, O magazine’s spokesperson set the record straight regarding the carefully crafted blurb within NXIVM’s promotional literature.

The O Oprah Magazine Spokesperson clarified, “Nancy Salzman appeared in a June 2003 O, The Oprah Magazine ‘real woman’ fashion story. The story simply listed Ms. Salzman’s title and occupation along with her style preferences. It did not elaborate on her business any further.”

Oprah Winfrey is well known for her interest in self-improvement, but neither the talk-show host nor her magazine in any way endorsed or specifically promoted NXIVM, Salzman’s claimed expertise or Executive Success Programs.

As reported by CultNews an apparent effort to mislead was far worse regarding the Forbes article titled “Cult of Personality“.

Nancy Salzman quoted herself gushing about her mentor within the brochure, but apparently tried to pass it off as a positive review about Raniere from Forbes. The quote is attributed within the NXIVM literature as simply, “As mentioned in Forbes magazine.”

This would be like a motion picture studio taking out an ad to promote a film that says, “New York Times: ‘sensational’ ‘genius.'”

But placed in proper context the quotes actually read, “The movie’s producer called the film ‘sensational’ and said the director’s work was ‘genius.'”

Raniere and Salzman seem to have a penchant for grandiose self-promotion.

Salzman according to her brochure bio has logged “over 20 years of intensive study and practice in the fields of healthcare, human potential, and human empowerment.”

However, Nancy is simply a nurse that has attended many mass marathon training seminars similar to those offered by NXIVM and she has studied various communication and persuasion techniques.

Salzman is not a licensed mental health professional.

Raniere’s brochure bio reads “scientist, mathematician, philosopher and entrepreneur” with the “highest IQ” recorded in 1989.

But despite such titles Raniere like Salzman has no degree in psychology, is not a licensed mental health professional and in fact does not posses a post-graduate diploma.

Medical Doctor and psychiatrist Carlos Rueda is a licensed mental health professional and he has treated three former NXIVM students.

Rueda told the Albany Times-Union, “NXIVM leaders weren’t prepared or certified to deal with the potential psychological problems that can surface during the training.”

It has been reported that one breakdown linked to NXIVM ended at a hospital, while another lead to a tragic suicide.

No doubt amongst NXIVM’s devoted disciples and within its rather insular world of classes and programs Raniere (known as “Vanguard”) and Salzman (known as “Prefect”) are legendary.

But in the real world the controversial duo appears to have garnered attention as little more than “cult” leaders, with perhaps some fashion sense.

Note: Forbes was contacted for comment, but has not responded officially.


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