Andrea Schneider

From Ava Abramowitz:
The DC Circuit of the US Court of Appeals is looking for a new director of workplace relations. The director provides confidential and impartial assistance to judges and court employees, including Federal Public Defender’s Office employees, on workplace conduct matters. The director works closely with the Employment Dispute Resolution Coordinators (EDRCs) to provide annual EDR Plan training and regular outreach to the court community on workplace conduct issues.
The first cut-off date for review of applications is August 9, 2024.
Click here for more information.
Continue Reading Help Wanted: Director of Workplace Relations

Our field has a great deal to offer campus leaders, who involuntarily joined us as dispute resolution practitioners as they dealt with campus conflicts related to the Middle East violence. Many campus leaders are now engaged in contingent planning for a variety of potential fall scenarios. The Divided Community Project will be grateful if you share with your campus colleagues the updated, planning focused, Third Edition of Leading a Divided Campus: Ideas and Illustrations. They might also want to attend the 90-minute virtual “office hours” that the Project will schedule when new conflict-related issues arise. If they would
Continue Reading Preparing Campus Leaders for the Return to Campus this Fall

From BFOI Peter Reilly (Texas A&M), below is a list of current and exciting scholarship projects either completed or in process as reported by our ADR Prof. colleagues around the country.

Joseph Alfe (Texas A&M University)

  • This summer, I am completing my current WIP tentatively titled: TITLE IX INFORMAL RESOLUTION: A NEW DISPUTE RESOLUTION PATHWAY IS DESCRIBED – AND WHY INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION SHOULD CONSIDER IMPLEMENTING A TITLE IX INFORMAL RESOLUTION PRACTICE. This paper details the recent authorization of informal resolution as a tool to resolve allegations of sex-based discrimination under Title IX and explores the use of various

Continue Reading ADR Scholarship Projects – July 2024

Are you going to teach a law school mediation course this fall?
If so, I suggest that you read It’s Time to Make Important Upgrades to Our Mediation Curriculum right away.
It’s also relevant to ADR survey, negotiation, and lawyering courses.
The article includes numerous suggestions and links to handy resources that you can incorporate in your courses with modest adjustments to prior offerings.
The article may also be of interest to mediators and attorneys representing clients in mediation.  It provides a useful history of the ADR movement in the past 50 years and a more realistic and complete description
Continue Reading If You Will Teach a Law School Mediation Course This Fall, Read This Article Right Away

This 4-page article riffs on comments at a program at the recent ABA Section of Dispute Resolution conference to illustrate how oxymoronic the terms “facilitative,” “evaluative,” and “empowerment” have become.
When people use these terms, we kinda, sorta, probably think we know what they mean. But we don’t really know.
The article suggests ways that dispute resolution academics and practitioners can avoid speaking oxymoron.
As so-called communication experts, it would be nice if we could speak and write so that people actually do know what we mean.
A radical concept, I know.
But try it. You’ll like it.
Continue Reading Oxymorons R Us

St. Catherine University in St. Paul hired Jacqueline Font-Guzmán to serve in the inaugural role of senior vice president of equity and belonging, beginning August 1.  She currently serves as the inaugural vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion  and a tenured professor at the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding at Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, Virginia.  You may recall that she had been the director of Creighton’s Negotiation and Conflict Resolution program.
Click here for more information.
Take a look.
Continue Reading Jacqueline Font-Guzmán Takes New Position at St. Catherine University

I recently gave a presentation about how mediators use technology in their practices.  The program was organized by the Technology and Mediation Committees of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution and co-sponsored by seven other committees.
I’m sure no tech expert but I used the program to collect data from practitioners who use technology in their everyday practices.  They provided some really good stuff.
Here’s a link to the 8-page article summarizing what we learned.
Reviewing the Real Practice System Menu of Mediation Checklists can help practitioners assess their technological needs.
Take a look.
Continue Reading A Snapshot of How Mediators Use Technology These Days

RSI, Resolutions Systems, Inc has

As loyal readers of the blog know, one of our favorites, Susan Yates, is taking on new challenges in the DR world and non-profit worlds and moving on from Resolution Systems Institute (RSI). RSI has announced that Heather Fogg has been appointed as its next Chief Executive Officer. Heather started on June 17 and will be working with Susan for the next few weeks to ensure a smooth transition.

From RSI’s announcement:

Heather comes to RSI with an extensive background in court-connected ADR and research. Her expertise includes directing court mediator excellence programs; managing a
Continue Reading Transition at RSI

Here are excerpts from an article in the ABA Journal:
Oregon’s new Supervised Practice Portfolio Examination that allows ABA-accredited law school graduates to join the state’s bar by working closely with a supervising attorney instead of taking the bar exam is gaining traction with candidates and potential employers.

The additional pathway allows applicants to complete a 675-hour paid apprenticeship under a qualified, supervising Oregon-licensed lawyer. Requirements include leading “at least two initial client interviews or client counseling sessions” and “at least two negotiations,” along with “the production of at least eight pieces of written work product.”

Continue Reading Oregon’s Alternative Pathway to the Bar Proves Popular

Earlier this year, I blogged here about the SEC’s staying of a rule change (previously approved by the SEC) to FINRA’s arbitration rules barring non-attorney representatives (NARs) from representing parties in its forum. The Stay Order was an extremely unusual move by the SEC, and certainly raised many questions.

I just became aware [catching up this summer on long overdue reading] of a subsequent related (and also unusual) event: in April 2024, SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce released a “Statement” relevant to the Stay Order, which could be construed as revealing at least, in part, reasons for the Stay.
Continue Reading Follow-up to SEC’s Stay of Rule Change Barring NARs in FINRA Arbitration

Perhaps your university has asked you, as a dispute resolution expert, what can be done quickly in a fall semester orientation or another one- to two-hour context. If so, the Divided Community Project at the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law offers colleges and universities two new videos with accompanying checklists and a facilitation guide. Thanks to a grant from the AAA-ICDR Foundation, they are offered without charge.“Reaching Out Matters” illustrates in five minutes a student extending support to her friends, a relatable approach for students of using the checklist that is posted at Students can learn
Continue Reading DCP Provides Resources for Teaching Students How to Manage Difficult Conversations

This short article summarizes a program entitled Pracademically Speaking:  Incorporating Real-World Legal Practice Into the Curriculum at the Legal Educators Colloquium during the annual conference of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution.  Debra Berman and Denise Peterson (South Texas College of Law Houston) and I gave the presentations.
The article describes problems with legal curricula, pressures to improve because of the NextGen bar exam and some states’ plans to use alternative mechanisms for licensing, and successful techniques for improving the realism in law school courses.
It includes links to numerous resources to help faculty make their instruction more realistic.
Continue Reading Preparing Law Students for Real-World Practice

At its midyear meeting, the ABA House of Delegates unanimously approved Resolution 500, which states:
That the American Bar Association urges lawyers and all interested parties to increase the informed and voluntary use of Early Dispute Resolution: party-directed, non-adjudicative approaches to resolve disputes in a time-efficient and cost-effective manner, including, but not limited to, direct negotiation, mediation, and ombuds.
This article provides more background.  It notes:
The Resolution was spearheaded and drafted by ABA Section of Dispute Resolution EDR Committee Co-Chairs Ellie Vilendrer (California), Felicia Harris Hoss (Texas), and Mary Cullen (Minnesota) and Co-Chair of the Ombud’s Committee Meg
Continue Reading ABA Adopts Policy Encouraging Early Dispute Resolution

This short article uses Real Practice Systems (RPS) theory to identify things that mediators can do to improve their mediation skills.
Mediators can begin by recognizing that they have a complex mediation practice system if they mediate regularly.  The article includes links to a short video and articles to help them understand their unique systems.
Using these insights, they can complete a self-assessment questionnaire and take advantage of the RPS Menu of Mediation Checklists to tailor their own checklists to fit their practices. 
Mediators can continuously improve by participating in ongoing educational practice groups.
Although the article was published in
Continue Reading Top Ten Ways to Improve Your Mediation Skills

The movement to license lawyers in ways other than simply passing a bar exam is marching on.
According to an article in the ABA Journal:
The Nevada Supreme Court is considering a proposal to shift its licensure process to a three-stage assessment echoing the process for medical doctors.
According to the proposal submitted April 1, candidates for the bar would first take a multiple-choice test during law school, followed by a performance test after graduation and conduct 40-to-60 hours of supervised practice while in or after law school.
Unlike other states that offer various pathways to the bar, “this
Continue Reading Nevada Will Consider Three-Stage Process to Join Bar

This post summarizes the discussion in a program entitled “Ready, Set, Mediate!” at the recent Court ADR Symposium.  The program about helping parties prepare for mediation sessions was part of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution’s annual conference.  This post includes the audience’s experiences of problems due to inadequate preparation for mediation sessions and a list of materials they use or would like to use.  The last part of this post provides helpful resources to help people be as ready as possible when their mediation sessions begin.

The program featured presentations by Rebecca Price, Margaret Huang, and me.  I described
Continue Reading Ready, Set, Mediate!