Zach Zarnow joined the Illinois Equal Justice Foundation as Program Director in January 2016, taking on the task of developing, monitoring, and evaluating IEJF’s initiative to create a statewide military personnel and veterans’ legal assistance hotline and coordinated network of legal support services. This program is funded under Public Act 99-0281 and is overseen by the Illinois Access to Civil Justice Council. Zach relocated in July 2019 and currently oversees the IL Armed Forces Legal Aid Network (IL-AFLAN) for the IEJF on a contract basis.
Zach has focused his career on increasing access to justice. After graduating from Brandeis University, Zach spent two years in Eastern Ukraine as a Peace Corps Community Development Volunteer, where he developed civil society networks, established social enterprises, and created anti-corruption initiatives. This experience drove him to enroll at American University’s Washington College of Law, where he focused his studies on access to justice, human rights, and legal empowerment. During law school and after he held fellowships and positions with the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative, the Open Society Foundations, Public Justice, and the American Association for Justice. Immediately prior to joining IEJF, Zach was a Policy Analyst at the Council for Court Excellence in Washington, DC. In that capacity, Zach managed a comprehensive effort to reform the jury trial process in DC.