Lore Rosenthal is Walking for Climate Change Action

| July 17, 2013 | 2 Comments

About the Walk

Greenbelt’s most politically active resident – you all agree, right? – is Lore Rosenthal, and right now she’s in training for the upcoming Walk for Our Grandchildren from Camp David to Harpers Ferry and then DC.  The purpose is to raise awareness about climate change and demand that policymakers do SOMETHING about it.  Lore and fellow walkers will be covering the 62 miles over five and a half days – from July 22 through 27.

The walk is for men and women of all ages, and they’ll be sleeping in campgrounds along the way (C&O canal).  Walkers each bring a tent, which will be transported for them in a van, along with the walkers’ backpacks and duffel bags.  The group will be walking 12 miles a day.

To get in shape for the walking and the heat, Lore tries to walk three miles a day (to and from Greenbelt Lake, then twice around the lake) at least four days a week.  Though 12 miles will be covered each day, Lore hopes those miles will be split into four sessions, with food- and drink-imbibing breaks in between.   There will also be vans picking up anyone who is too exhausted on any given day to complete the 12 miles.  As Lore told me, “This is not a marathon or walk-a-thon or fundraiser .  The goal is climate change, not a gold medal for athletics.”

How We Can Help
  •  Give money.
  • Join the walk as a “day walker.”  Click here to learn more.
  • Volunteer as a marshall, by driving/shuttling day walkers,  by driving to deliver food and ice,  as a general volunteer who helps with logistics, or by riding a bike with a trailer carrying equipment and supplies.
  • Write a brief letter to President Obama about climate change (either praising him for his climate plan, criticizing him for not doing enough, or suggesting what he should do now to protect future generations).  Email it to Lore (lore@simplicity-matters.org) by July 20 and she’ll print it out and “put it in a pretty envelope.”  Each walker is encouraged to bring 62 handwritten letters to the president (one for each of the 62 miles).  As of earlier this week Lore had 34 handwritten letters.
  • Join the rally in DC on Saturday, July 27.  Click here to learn more.

About Lore

Happy to get arrested for the cause!
When Lore asked me to help publicize the Walk, I jumped at the chance to find out more about HER, which follows.


Lore (pronounced Laura) grew up in Baltimore, went to college at Tufts and then Brown as an undergrad, then completed graduate work in deaf education in Cincinnati.  Her career has been in service to the deaf community – as an elementary school teacher, parent-infant teacher, adult literacy teacher, coordinating various programs for the deaf, as a sign language interpreter, working for a deaf financial advisor, and even helping a deaf friend start a cigar business.


She lost her job earlier this year and is now “on sabbatical” while trying to start a “green business” – a worker-owned composting cooperative, which would be Greenbelt’s eighth co-op but the first one owned by the workers.  Asked if she’s retiring, she answers: “No, definitely not.  I am only 55.”


In 2000, Lore moved from Philadelphia back to Maryland, and then to Greenbelt in 2008.
Lore with partner-in-crime (and life) Michael Hartman; and dressed as Betsy Ross to register voters.
I pressed Lore for details of her life as an activist, and the answer was a long one, starting with being taken to Vietnam War protests in D.C. by her mother.  (“My mother was very concerned about racism, equal rights, women’s rights, pro-choice, etc.”)  Lore lived through the Baltimore riots in 1968.  After college, while living in Philadelphia, she got involved with Jewish groups supporting the rights of Palestinians and a two-state solution in Israel.  She explains, “I always had a hard time keeping up with Israeli Politics but found I was a very good organizer.  I was good at inviting people to meetings, keeping databases of volunteers, facilitating the meetings, planning the events.  I left the ‘content’ to others.”

In 1999, Lore got involved with the Voluntary Simplicity Movement that focuses on simplicity, sustainability, global warming, the effects of our environmental problems on our health, raising children in our consumer culture, and more.  Since 2002 she has helped start over 285 discussion circles in 11 counties.  She also helped found the Climate Change Initiative of Howard County.


Lore’s activism has included lobbying the Greenbelt City Council on the issues of Citizens United and fracking; lobbying the county for a bag bill, among other measures; lobbying in Annapolis for bills related to wind, fracking, and solar energy; attending many rallies in DC, including those related to Keystone XL, fracking, and the Occupy movement.; and getting arrested at the White House in Aug 2011, along with 1,253 people.  ( She reports that they still keep in touch on Facebook!)


However, she tells me she much prefers these other forms of organizing: launching a Transition Town in Greenbelt, helping to start Greenbelt Climate Action Network, helping CHEARS.org start the Three Sisters Garden, helping coordinate the Green Neighborhood Energy Challenge, helping to start Greenbelt Community Solar, starting a TimeBank in Greenbelt (coming soon!), and starting the Worker-Owned Cooperative Incubator Group

But still more issues are on her radar for action here in Greenbelt:  the inequality of services to residents living in Greenbelt-West; sign language-accessible services through GHI, City of Greenbelt, Greenbelt Arts Center, Utopia Film Festival, etc; and marriage equality.

I hope you’re all inspired and energized by reading about Lore’s good works for a better world.   Honestly, on this hot and muggy day I’m feeling less than energetic myself, but I hope to join her in the good fight soon.  When it cools down a bit.

Climate change rally on a very cold day.



Category: Green, People

About the Author ()

Susan Harris has been writing online since 2005 - about gardening. (E.g., Garden Rant, Lawn Reform Coalition, and Behnkes Nursery.) In 2012 she started this community blog for and about her adopted hometown. She also created and curates the Greenbelt Maryland Youtube Channel and does digital promotion for several Greenbelt organizations.

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