Harriet Silverman was born in May, 1939 in Baltimore, Maryland. She was married in 1958, has three children, and graduated with a BA in education from the University of Maryland in 1971, and pursued a master's degree in journalism.
Harriet has been a community volunteer since the 1960's in Maryland; Washington, DC; Tucson; Phoenix; and Aspen, CO. She founded the Women's Foundation of Southern Arizona with Melody Robidoux, and is a member of the University of Arizona Women's Studies Advisory Council. Working with the UA Women in Science and Engineering program, she developed a mentoring program for middle and high school girls, created a scholarship for women students in science and engineering, and volunteered with the Expanding Your Horizons program.
She has served on the board of the Aspen Music Festival and School, the national council of the Aspen-Santa Fe Dance Festival and the board of Invisible Theatre in Tucson.