Dr. Holly Carlson Zhao

Licensed Psychologist, Neuropsychology | Founder


Hi there – Here’s a bit about me and why it matters to you too.

I am passionate about helping people take control of their brain health. As a neuropsychologist, my specialty is taking care of your brain within the context of healthcare and helping you understand how to take care of it at home. I have plenty of experience as a professional and as an everyday woman to help you.

Five years ago, I founded the Center for Optimal Brain Health and established it as a private practice to meet the needs of Houstonians. We’ve grown since then, and now I have three doctors with me and a team of professionals. Each of us is dedicated to helping you understand, maintain, and improve your brain health. I’m proud of each person on our team, and what has prepared each of us to help you.

In my case, I grew up in the mountains but had opportunities to travel and spend time in big cities near and far. I studied international affairs before I pivoted to becoming a licensed psychologist. The Texas Medical Center and my family drew me to Houston for my doctoral studies, and as they say, “I got here as soon as I could”. My clinical training included working with adolescents, adults and older adults in evidence-based treatments and assessment, particularly in the area of neuropsychology and forensic psychology. Over time I specialized in these areas. I trained with many respected neuropsychologists and in conjunction with Baylor College of Medicine’s Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Disorders Center. Today I lead the Center, see patients, conduct research, present at national and international conferences, and serve the greater community by leading organizations like the Houston Psychological Association.

When I’m not working you’ll find me enjoying a date with my husband, relishing reading books with my babies, attempting (whether successfully or not) to share a healthy meal, gratefully spending time with extended family, chipping away at personal goals like trying to learn a bit of Mandarin, and cultivating what matters to me. The Center for Optimal Brain Health matters to me, and you do to.

I hope you can come and see us in our new space! It’s around the corner from our first office but so much brighter and roomier. In our line of work, time is of the essence. I hope you will visit us and take advantage of all that is available to you here. Should trouble arise, we’d like to become the trusted resource you call on for answers. If you’re fit as a fiddle, we’re here for you too with information and wellness services. Welcome to the Center for Optimal Brain Health. We’re so glad you’re checking us out and look forward to meeting you soon.