Inspired by a constitutional law course in college, Carolyn C. Zollar has dedicated her career to the field. She started out as an assistant to William Anderson, a congressman in the U.S. House of Representatives, after which she advanced to roles like planning consultant, legal assistant, and government and external relations assistant at the National Institute of Education, and associate at Joe W. Fleming II, Professional Corporation. During this time, Ms. Zollar built a strong reputation for her understanding of lobbying and the U.S. budgeting process. She also used her role to mentor young women coming into the industry.
After seven years with Joe W. Fleming II, Ms. Zollar left to focus her legal knowledge on another issue she was passionate about: rehabilitation services. She joined the National Association of Rehabilitation Facilities in 1982, and remained with them in roles like general counsel and director of medical rehabilitation until 1994. Ms. Zollar then joined the American Rehabilitation Association as a general counsel and vice president of policy, the American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association as the vice president of government relations and policy development, and Futures Rehabilitation Management as the vice president. She returned to the American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association as the executive vice president in 2015 and remains there to this day. She considers the highlight of her career thus far to be helping to get laws passed to help people receive rehabilitation services.
To prepare for her endeavors, Ms. Zollar earned a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College in 1969, a Master of Arts from Columbia University in 1970, and a JD from American University in 1976. She was then admitted to practice in the state of Virginia and in the District of Columbia.
In recognition of her efforts, Ms. Zollar received a number of accolades over the years. Some notable ones include the AMRPA Leadership Excellence Award, the Helen Hayes MacArthur Award, and the AAPMR Distinguished Public Service Award. If Ms. Zollar could offer some advice to the younger generations, it would be to find a mentor or someone in the field to shadow. This hands-on experience is something that can’t really be taught in a classroom.
When Ms. Zollar has free time, she enjoys skiing, golfing, and singing.