Carolyn Hayer

Center for Parent Information and Resources

 Carolyn has been working in the field of parent and family advocacy for over twenty-five years. She is currently the Senior Program Director of National and Regional Projects at SPAN Parent Advocacy Network in NJ. SPAN is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower families and to inform and involve professionals and other individuals interested in the healthy development and education of children.

As Director of the Center for Parent Information and Resources, Carolyn and her team work to provide information and products to build capacity of the close to 100 Parent Centers across the country who assist and serve families of children with disabilities. In her various roles at SPAN, Carolyn has conducted presentations at the local, state and national levels on topics related to health and education advocacy, family-professional partnerships, and family and youth leadership development. She previously served as Co-Director of multiple projects supporting parent centers to address issues from reaching and supporting underserved families to non-profit management to building capacity to reach, serve, and grow leadership skills of diverse youth and young adults with disabilities as they transition to adulthood.

According to Dr. Martin Luther King, life’s most persistent and urgent question is, “What are you doing for others?” Carolyn has answered that question by serving in a myriad of ways. She has volunteered at all levels- from local leadership as PTA president, Recreation & Cultural Board member, local Education Foundation trustee, and School Board president to state leadership as a NJ State Special Education Advisory Council member, Disability Rights NJ Board member, Arc of NJ Governmental Affairs Committee member, and Governor appointee to the NJ Council on Developmental Disabilities and the NJ State Rehabilitation Council. Carolyn is a recipient of the Phi Delta Kappa, Delta Nu Chapter Community Service Recognition Award, the Arc of Bergen & Passaic Professional of the Year Award and the Hackensack Education Foundation Distinguished Citizen Award. She is currently pursuing a Master of Public Administration degree from Rutgers University.