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Executive Office

Scott Carlson

Associate Executive Director, Global Programs

Scott Carlson, Associate Executive Director, Global Programs

Scott Carlson, Associate Executive Director, Global Programs

Scott’s legal career spans over 30 years and includes over 20 years in the international development and rule of law fields. He began his work in rule of law in the early 1990s, as a pro bono Rule of Law Liaison for the ABA. In the years since, he has worked in both field-based and headquarters settings. Currently, he is Associate Executive Director of the ABA's Center of Global Programs, previously the Senior Director for Programs and Strategic Initiatives at ABA ROLI. In this capacity, he oversees the design, management, and evaluation of ABA ROLI’s complex international legal assistance programs. He brings experience working with a variety of donors and international organizations, including USAID, UN, European Union, ILAC, African Union, U.S. Department of State, The Hague Institute for Global Justice, and International IDEA.

Over the course of his career, Scott has worked on both the donor and implementer sides of international development. On the donor side, he has served as Senior Rule of Law Advisor for the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) and Senior Rule of Law Advisor at the Rule of Law Center for Innovation at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). As an implementer, he has worked with various companies and organizations, including the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), New-Rule LLC, ABA, and Chemonics International.

When not doing international development, Scott practiced as a lawyer in the public and private sectors. In the public sector, he worked with the IRS Office of Chief Counsel in the Honors Program, drafting regulations and rulings, as well as litigation at Tax Court. He also served in the Department of Commerce’s Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP); he was a U.S. Supreme Court Fellow; and he worked as an Assistant General Counsel for the United States Sentencing Commission. In the private sector, he worked for a large international law firm in their European offices. Each of these engagements in the practice of law shaped and informed his understanding of rule of law.

Before recently rejoining ABA, Scott served in ABA’s Washington Offices, as the Director for Central and Eastern Europe and Judicial Reform from 1999-2003. He designed and managed multiple international legal reform programs and supervised over 80 employees in offices across Eastern Europe. He also led the implementation of ABA ROLI’s first assessment tool, the Judicial Reform Index. Scott has published regularly on rule of law, human rights, anti-corruption, and other legal fields.

Scott holds a B.A. degree in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a J.D. from the University of Georgia, and a Master of Laws in International and Comparative Law from Georgetown University. He speaks Albanian and French.