2024 Seattle Spring Conference Speakers

Stephanie Blondell

Session: Goulash and Brisket: Client-Centric Processes  

Stephanie Blondell is an Associate Professor of Law and Faculty Director of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and also directs the Straus Mediation Clinic. She teaches Mediation Theory and Practice, Psychology of Conflict, and Ethical Lawyering. Professor Blondell is a lead faculty for the Women’s Negotiation Academy and teaches Mediating the Litigated Case in Washington, D.C., domestically, and internationally. Prior to joining the Pepperdine community, Professor Blondell served as the Manager of the King County Alternative Dispute Resolution Program and Interlocal Conflict Resolution Group, a labor-management and public policy mediation program serving a tri-county region in Seattle. Professor Blondell also served as the Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator for the City of Seattle where she designed and implemented an employment mediation program for the City government in a joint labor-management context. It was while training and supervising the mediation practicum of over a hundred law students, attorneys, and non-attorneys that she developed a passion for teaching the practical skills needed at the mediation table and instilling rigorous and ethical professionalism to new lawyers in a classroom and clinical setting. She is the 2021 recipient of the Southern California Mediation Association President’s Award.

Steve Rottman

Session: Goulash and Brisket: Client-Centric Processes

Steve Rottman is one of California’s most respected mediators. An honors graduate of Harvard Law School and a summa cum laude graduate of Duke University, he spent 20 years as a trial lawyer before committing himself full-time to mediation. The Los Angeles Daily Journal named him one of the “top 50 neutrals in the state,” and he has been consistently recognized by “Best Lawyers in America” and the “Super Lawyer” publications as a trial lawyer and as a mediator. Steve lectures and trains mediators across the country and serves as an Adjunct Professor at The Straus Institute of Dispute Resolution, where he teaches Advanced Mediation. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators, an avid whitewater kayaker, an aspiring Fender bass player, and the proud father of two strong-willed daughters.

Mike Young 

Session: Goulash and Brisket: Client-Centric Processes
*also facilitating a breakout session 

Mike Young Mike Youngis a full-time mediator in California, and former President of the IAM.  When not mediating, he’sthinkingabout mediation, much to his wife’s chagrin.  (Of course, when Mike’s wife is not teaching pilates around the world, she’sthinkingabout pilates — andstrongly encouragingMike to do it — so he figures they’re even.)

Nina Meierding 

Session: The Art of Mediation: Advanced Client – Centered Strategies

Nina Meierding, MS, JD, has been involved in the conflict resolution field for over 35 years, mediating over 4,000 disputes and training thousands of people in almost all 50 states, as well as internationally – including Canada, Sweden, Ireland, England, Scotland, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and India. She has trained court systems, corporations, non-profits, school districts, local, state, and national government agencies, law firms, and multiple other entities in negotiation, mediation, and gender and cultural issues.  She taught at Pepperdine University School of Law for almost 30 years, as well as both the National and California Judicial Colleges and other universities. She served on numerous national conflict resolution boards and is a former president of the Academy of Family Mediators.  Her many awards include the John Haynes Distinguished Mediator Award by the Association of Conflict Resolution, the Lifetime Achievement Award by the American College of Civil Trial Mediators, and the Distinguished Neutral Award  from the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals.   She has been  profiled in the America Bar Association Dispute Resolution Magazine and is an Honorary Fellow with the International Academy of Mediators. 

Benjamin Alarie  

Session: The Future of Mediation in the Emerging Age of AI

Benjamin Alarie, the Osler Chair in Business Law at the University of Toronto and founder and CEO of Blue J, is a trailblazer at the forefront of applying AI to legal challenges. With a background that includes Yale Law School and the Supreme Court of Canada, Alarie’s work sits at the vital nexus of legal academia, AI, and entrepreneurship. He’s not only theorized about the potential of AI in law but has actively realized it through Blue J, bringing AI-powered insights to legal professionals. His recent book, The Legal Singularity: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Law Radically Better (2023), is a testament to his vision for a more efficient, transparent legal system. 

Allan J. Stitt

Session: The Future of Mediation in the Emerging Age of AI

Allan Stitt, C.Med., C.Arb., is a Toronto based mediator, arbitrator, trainer, author, and ADR systems design specialist. He has mediated in numerous contexts including commercial, employment, sports, insurance, tax, real estate, and family business. Allan has designed and taught ADR workshops in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa. He earned his Master of Laws at Harvard Law School where he first studied ADR. He is a Canadian delegate to UNCITRAL and was one of the negotiators of the Singapore Convention for the enforcement of international mediation agreements. Allan is the current Treasurer of the IAM and in 2023 was named a Who’s Who Global Thought Leader in Mediation, one of ten in North America. 

Niraj Kumar

Session: Reimagining Your Mediation Practice with AI 

Niraj Kumar is the founder of Zenkoder and iDecisionGames. He was formerly a Vice President at Goldman Sachs and has an MBA from MIT Sloan. Niraj leads a remote-first team, converting new ideas into products for enterprise clients like Deloitte, Red Ventures, Virgin Hotels and others, several innovative startups, and for his own startups. In 2017, the Harvard Program on Negotiation published an article describing how iDecisionGames was revolutionizing negotiation teaching. In the last 12 months, he has been working on reimagining how AI can enhance teaching, learning and practice across many domains. Recent AI-driven product launches include Guide.com, Cashflowy.ai, Louisa.ai, and NegotiateUP.com.

Michael Dickstein

Session: Reimagining Your Mediation Practice with AI
*also facilitating a breakout session 

Michael E. Dickstein has been a full-time mediator, arbitrator, and teacher of negotiation and mediation since the mid-1990s.  He has extensive experience in mediating and arbitrating disputes across North America involving employment, commercial, class action, contract, real estate, personal injury, tort, discrimination, malpractice, construction defect, franchise, defamation, environmental and other issues.  He also teaches negotiation, ADR and mediation to law students and MBA students at Stanford Law School, and worldwide. Michael’s teaching and presentations have taken him from Canada and the U.S.A., to Australia, China, France, Germany, Ireland, England, The Bahamas, Bermuda, St. Lucia and Trinidad. Through the Stitt Feld Handy Group, he has taught courses on negotiation and mediation in conjunction with Notre Dame, Melbourne and Windsor Law Schools. He has also taught courses through the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and other leading ADR groups. And Michael has been an Adjunct Professor at the University of San Francisco (MBA Program), where he designed and taught courses on “The Art of Negotiation, Mediation and Conflict Resolution in Business”.

Bill Marler

Session: Mediating Cases When Food Kills- How to Keep the Parties in Focus 

An accomplished attorney and national expert in food safety, William (Bill) Marler has become the most prominent foodborne illness lawyer in America and a major force in food policy in the U.S. and around the world. Over the last 30 years, Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, has represented thousands of individuals in claims against food companies whose contaminated products have caused life altering injury and even death. Bill began litigating foodborne illness cases in 1993, when he represented Brianne Kiner, the most seriously injured survivor of the historic Jack in the Box E. coli O157:H7 outbreak, in her landmark $15.6 million settlement with the company. The 2011 book Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the Way Americans Eat, by best-selling author Jeff Benedict, chronicles the Jack in the Box outbreak and the rise of Bill Marler as a food safety attorney. Bill’s advocacy for a safer food supply includes petitioning the United States Department of Agriculture to better regulate pathogenic E. coli, working with nonprofit food safety and foodborne illness victims’ organizations, and helping spur the passage of the 2010-2011 FDA Food Safety Modernization Act. His work has led to invitations to address local, national, and international gatherings on food safety, including testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce. In 2010 Bill was awarded the NSF Food Safety Leadership Award for Education and in 2008 earned the Outstanding Lawyer Award by the King County Bar Association. He also received the Public Justice Award from the Washington State Trial Lawyers Association in 2008.

Jeff Krivis

Session: Mediating Cases When Food Kills- How to Keep the Parties in Focus 

Jeffrey Krivis began his mediation practice in 1989, when lawyer-mediators in Southern California were rare, and litigators had to look outside the state for experienced practitioners. Now, later and having resolved thousands of disputes — including mass tort, employment, entertainment, business, complex insurance, catastrophic injury and class action matters — Krivis is recognized not only as a pioneer in the field, but also as one of the most respected neutrals in the state.An adjunct professor at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University School of Law since 1994, Krivis teaches negotiation and mediation skills to lawyers and judges. His experiences as both a working mediator and academic prompted him to write “Improvisational Negotiation: A Mediators Stories of Conflict About Love, Money and Anger and the Strategies that Resolved Them,” as well as “How to Make Money As A Mediator And Create Value For Everyone” (Wiley/Jossey-Bass 2006). Krivis is an IAM past president and a past-president of the Southern California Mediation Association. The Los Angeles Daily Journal legal newspaper named him one of the top 20 neutrals in the state, and he continues to appear since its inception on the Super Lawyer list published by Los Angeles magazine and Law & Politics Media. He is featured in a recent edition of Best Lawyers in America. Krivis received the highest rating (AV) from Martindale-Hubbell.

Eric Galton

Session: Mediating Cases When Food Kills- How to Keep the Parties in Focus  

Eric Galton, an IAM past-president, has mediated over 7000 cases and arbitrated over 100 disputes. Eric is a founding partner of the Lakeside Mediation Center in Austin, Texas. In 1991, Eric’s first book, Representing Clients at Mediation, won a CPR best book award. Since that time, Galton has published 4 books about mediation, including his recent ABA collaboration with Professor Lela Love, Stories Mediators Tell. Galton’s books have been translated into five languages. Galton has been named a “Texas Superlawyer” in ADR for twelve consecutive years and received the Texas Lawyers coveted “Go To” award in mediation. Galton is listed in Who’s Who for both Commercial Mediation and Thought Leaders, and is a Martindale Hubble Preeminent AV lawyer. Galton served on the board of the Texas Association of Mediators and is a Texas Distinguished Credentialed Mediator. Eric is an adjunct professor at Pepperdine School of Law and served as an adjunct professor at University of Texas School of Law. 

Patrick Van Leynseele

Session: Back to Basics: Dialogue is What Matters  

Patrick Van Leynseele is a seasoned international arbitrator and mediator of commercial disputes, and his practice is one of the most developed in Belgium. A member of the Brussels and New York Bars, Patrick is a partner in the Brussels and Kinshasa (D.R.C.) law firm Daldewolf. He participated in the drafting of the 2005 Belgian law on mediation, which became a model for the 2008 EU directive that he subsequently worked on. Patrick regularly teaches mediation in Belgium and abroad, and has a long list of publications to his name, one of which he co-authored with Pierre Jung and IAM fellow member Catherine Peulve. 

Catherine Peulve

Session: Back to Basics: Dialogue is What Matters  

Catherine Peulvé has been a member of the Paris Bar since 1994 and practices mainly in commercial and banking pre-litigation and litigation, both domestic and international. She opened her own law firm CPLAW Catherine Peulvé Avocat in 2007 after extensive experience with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP. She occasionally acts as an arbitrator and regularly since 2009 as a mediator in inter-company, partner or shareholder disputes, contractual liabilities and breaches and determination of damages, domestic and international. Catherine is registered as a judicial mediator on the list of the Court of Appeal of Paris and on the list of the Ministry of Justice of Luxembourg, and is regularly identified by Who’s Who Legal (WWL) France as one of the few high profile mediators selected for commercial mediation, and is again ranked in 2023 among the top independent mediators in France. She was also admitted as a Distinguished Fellow to the prestigious International Academy of Mediators (IAM). Catherine Peulvé regularly trains and teaches negotiation and mediation at numerous schools, universities, institutes and professional organizations. She is co-author of the book on the practice of commercial mediation, MÉDIATION COMMERCIALE Méthode | Stratégies | Outils (Catherine Peulvé, Pierre Jung, Patrick van Leyneseele, Pearson, 2022). 

Mary McLain

Breakout Session: Back to Basics: Dialogue is What Matters  

Mary McLain is the founder of McLain Mediation. She holds a LL.M degree in Dispute Resolution from the Straus Institute at Pepperdine University School of Law and practiced as a litigator in major San Francisco law firms before turning fulltime to mediation in 1998. Ms. McLain mediates a wide-range of areas including international commercial/business, employment, real estate, personal injury, insurance, probate, and partnerships. She serves as a Federal Court mediator and provides mediation services for courts and private organizations. As an adjunct professor, she taught at University of California Berkeley School of Law, University of California Law San Francisco Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution and HULT International Business School in mediation, negotiation, leadership and the mediation clinic. She lectures throughout the world and has led trainings in mediation for lawyers worldwide for INTA, federal and state courts, and state and local bar associations. In 2014 she co-organized and led the first ever Mediation Round Table for professionals at the ICC Mediation Competition. She is a Distinguished Fellow of the IAM and was selected by the WWL as a Leader in Commercial Mediation. She is past president of numerous professional and community organizations. In her spare time she enjoys traveling, playing tennis and spending time with her family. 

Hal Abramson

Breakout Session: Mediating and Negotiating When Pressed For Time  

Professor Hal Abramson, Touro Law Center in New York, has been deeply involved in the development and practice of domestic and international dispute resolution for more than twenty-five years. He contributes as a teacher, trainer, author, and participant on professional committees and serves actively as a mediator and facilitator. He also has taught or trained on dispute resolution in twenty-two countries on six continents. Professor Abramson has been selected for the International Who’s Who of Commercial Mediation since its inaugural year. He is an award-winning author with three of his numerous publications receiving awards from the CPR International Institute for Conflict Resolution. He served as IAM’s inaugural Scholar-in-Residence. 

Jonathan Andrews

Breakout Session:  The Problems With Always and Never: A Mediator’s Guide to Flexibility

Jonathan Andrews became a mediator because he is passionate about the benefits of pre-adjudication conflict resolution and the importance of customized, empathetic, and people-focused mediation strategies in achieving win-win outcomes. As a strong advocate with an authentic presence, Mr. Andrews provides value for all sides with his experience, creativity, compassion, and tenacity.  Mr. Andrews’ peers have consistently selected him as one of the Top 50 Super Lawyers in San Diego and voted to include him on the lists of San Diego Super Lawyers in the area of labor and employment from 2009 through 2022. He was also selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the practice area of Employment Law—Management from 2016 to 2023. Connecting with community is important for Mr. Andrews and his family. He has been a proud member of the San Diego County Big Brother/Big Sister program for over 15 years and is a current member of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Diego (BBBS) County Board of Directors. In 2020, BBBS honored Mr. Andrews and his wife, Dawn, as the 2020 Big Champions and, in 2021, BBBS recognized the couple as part of the 60 “Change Makers” who have helped shape the agency’s history.  

Orit Asnin

Breakout Session:  We Mediators “Talk the Talk”, But Can We Participate in Difficult Conversations Ourselves?

Adv. Orit Asnin is one of Israel’s most experienced leading mediators.  Previously a commercial lawyer, since 1999 she has mediated thousands of local and international conflicts involving public and private entities, government and local authorities, international and multinational corporations, family businesses and individuals. Orit has vast experience in mediating commercial conflicts of multifaceted and highly sensitive situations, some with extreme cross-cultural differences and some with multiple parties. She is deeply involved in promoting the use of mediation globally and she’s had numerous invitations to speak at international forums. Orit is one of Israel’s pioneers of the field of mediation; her daily mediations since the late 90s, as well as her public volunteering engagements in the Israeli Bar, have greatly contributed to the vast and common use of mediation in Israel.

Lee Jay Berman

Breakout Session: Opportunities Beyond The Courthouse  

Lee Jay Berman began as a full-time mediator over 30 years ago, successfully mediating over 2,700 matters. He is a Charter Member of NADN, a Master Mediator and panelist with the American Arbitration Association and ICDR, and an IAM Distinguished Fellow. Chambers USA ranks him Band 1 among the 13 top commercial mediators in the country, Who’s Who Legal named him one of 10 global thought leaders in North America, and ADR Times named him to their Who’s Who in ADR. A respected ADR trainer, Lee Jay founded the American Institute of Mediation after retiring as Director of Pepperdine Law School’s “Mediating the Litigated Case” program. Lee Jay has lectured at top universities across the United States and abroad, and has trained judges, attorneys and business leaders across North America, Europe, and the Middle East, as well as India, Uzbekistan, Australia, and New Zealand. In 2017, Lee Jay was presented with NADN’s inaugural Distinguished Neutral of the Year Award, in recognition of national excellence in the practice of mediation and for his exemplary skills as an ADR trainer.

Steve Cerveris

Breakout Session: The Problems With Always and Never: A Mediator’s Guide to Flexibility  

Steve Cerveris has been a full-time, independent mediator for over 25 years following a 15-year career as a trial attorney in Los Angeles.  His practice involves mediating a variety of civil litigation disputes with an emphasis on single Plaintiff and Wage & Hour Class Action employment matters.  In addition to his mediation practice, Steve served on several committees developing and refining the Los Angeles Superior Court’s Court-Annexed ADR Program, served as the Chair of the California State Bar’s ADR Committee, as a Board Member of the Southern California Mediation Association and as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. Steve was the recipient of the Volunteer of the Year Award from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for his work with the LA Superior Court’s ADR Program, recognized as a California “Top Neutral” by the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journal, a Southern California “Super Lawyer” since 2006, and peer- recognized in “Best Lawyers” of America since 2011.  He is an AV Rated Martindale & Hubbell attorney and has been a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators since 2002.

Logan Cooper

Breakout Session: Getting Personal 

For over 6 years, Logan Cooper has mediated cases in the areas of personal injury, property damage, long-term disability, and other insurance-related disputes. She initially joined the IAM as a mentee and in 2023, was admitted as an IAM Distinguished Fellow at the Zurich conference. For several years, Logan was on the planning committee for the IAM’s Continued Professional Development Series. She remains an active member of the IAM house band – the New Trolls.

Vance Cooper

Breakout Session: Re-Thinking Mediation Processes  

Vance Cooper is the principal of Cooper Mediation Inc. Vance devotes 100% of his professional time to mediating everything and anything connected to insurance [though he has also mediated commercial and self-insured matters]. This includes personal injury, property damage and subrogation, professional negligence, hospital and medical negligence, class actions among other things. He serves as an arbitrator in loss transfer and party disputes under the Insurance Act. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators, a Chartered Mediator of the ADR Institute of Canada and a Certified Mediator by the International Mediation Institute. Vance is a member of the Advocates’ Society, Ontario Bar Association, Canadian Bar Association. He served as a Deputy Judge of the Toronto Small Claims Court for 10 years. He has been included in Best Lawyers in Canada in the practice area of Insurance Law. 

Rob Daisley

Breakout Session: Tried-and-True: Mediator Systems to Guide Parties to Yes  

Robert Daisley is a full-time mediator who mediates approximately 250 cases a year in a wide range of subject matters including insurance, construction defect, professional liability, contracts, employment and personal injury. He has mediated over 4,500 cases since becoming certified in 2004 by the Florida state and federal courts. He is a Distinguished Fellow and former Board member/Membership Chair of the IAM.  Rob lives in Tampa with his wife Chantal.  He also teaches BodyPump at his local YMCA and guides canoe trips in the northern Ontario wilderness for Camp Temagami.

Barry Fisher

Breakout Session: Getting Personal  

Barry B. Fisher is a mediator and arbitrator in Toronto. He was called to the Ontario Bar in 1979 and has been an ADR practitioner since 1987. His practice focuses on both labour as well as employment law matters. In 2011, Barry was awarded the Ontario Bar Association Award of Excellence in ADR and in 2024 the Randall Echlin Award for Excellence in Labour and Employment .  He is the author of the Wrongful Dismissal Database; an on-line database published by WDD Online , designed to assist lawyers and judges in determining reasonable notice periods. In 2016, Barry became a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators. Barry is also a frequent contributor on LinkedIn on employment law matters.

Afsana Gibson-Chowdhury

Breakout Session: What do Settlements Look Like For Diverse Groups and How Do We Plan For Them? 

Afsana Gibson-Chowdhury is a lawyer, mediator, and founder of ‘Gibson Chowdhury’, a Toronto-based mediation boutique specializing in workplace discrimination, human rights, and civil and commercial disputes. Afsana is an Adjudicator and current chair of the Property Standards Committee for the City of Toronto. She is a past Chair of the Ontario Bar Association’s ADR Section Executive Board, during which time she co-chaired the ‘Neutral Diversity in Ontario’ report as part of an OBA Working Group, hoping to increase diversity in the mediation profession. She is a committee member of the Winkler Institute and a member of the International Academy of Mediators’ DEI committee. She has written several CLE programs on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion and intercultural communications. Afsana attends global speaking engagements on issues concerning dispute resolution and Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in ADR. She is an ADR Institute of Ontario Star Awards recipient.


Nina Khouri

Breakout Session: Why Cases Don’t Settle and What We Can (sometimes) Do About That 

Nina Khouri is a leading mediator in Aotearoa/New Zealand and a “Global Elite Thought Leader” in the most recent Who’s Who rankings for Commercial Mediation. She specializes in civil and commercial disputes with a particular focus on those of construction, insurance, energy/infrastructure, public/private partnership, contract, and tort and trust.  She has extensive experience with natural disaster insurance disputes and is currently working with the New Zealand government supervising the settlement of several thousand civil claims arising from the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010/2011.  Nina is also an Academic Fellow at the University of Auckland Faculty of Law, where she teaches and researches in dispute resolution theory and practice. She is a barrister sole in New Zealand, holds an LLM from NYU (where she studied as a Fulbright and Vanderbilt scholar in 2005/2006) and received her first mediator accreditation from the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution in the United Kingdom in 2006. 

Tat Lim

Breakout Session: Cultural Issues and Challenges in International Mediations: A Case of Kungfu Panda vs Captain America? 

Tat Lim is a dispute resolution practitioner and international mediator based in Singapore.  He has over three decades’ experience representing parties as lead counsel in all levels of the Singapore courts and in international arbitrations and mediations. He regularly mediates a wide variety of disputes including construction, engineering and commercial disputes, partnership and joint ventures, employment disputes including racial and sex discrimination claims, solicitors negligence claims, medical negligence claims, and many others. He has mediated for the Singapore Mediation Centre, Singapore International Mediation Centre, Vietnam Mediation Centre, AAA-ICDR, International Chamber of Commerce, CAO (World Bank Group) and Office of the Ombudsman for United Nations Funds and Programmes. He has been ranked for his dispute resolution practice in The Legal500 and is a Who’s Who Legal Global Elite Thought Leader.  He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, an IAM Distinguished Fellow, and a Weinstein International Fellow.  He serves on the boards of the International Academy of Mediators (IAM), the International Mediation Institute (IMI), the Singapore Mediation Centre, and the IBA’s Mediation Committee Advisory Board.

James Mang’erere

Breakout Session: What do Settlements Look Like For Diverse Groups and How Do We Plan For Them?  

James Mang’erere is a Senior Advocate of the high court of Kenya, The President Mediation Training Institute East Africa. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators London, a member of the law society of Kenya, Institute of certified secretaries of Kenya, and the East Africa law society. He is a Chartered Mediator (ICMC), an accredited Master Professional mediation Trainer, A Certified Conflicts Dynamics Profile User, Patron Society of Mediators of East and Central Africa. Mr. Mangerere is the first mediator from the African continent to be inducted into the prestigious International Academy of Mediators. He is a board member in the International Academy of mediators (IAM), International Mediation Institute (IMI) Netherlands, and the President Africa Mediators Association (AMA). Mr. Mangerere has considerable experience as a commercial and workplace arbitrator, mediator, facilitator, and a master trainer, with emphasis on large and complex cases in East Africa and internationally. He is a sought-after speaker and trainer in Mediation, and has conducted skills training or educational programs in mediation for many leading companies and international organizations. He is responsible for a series of in-depth interviews on conflict resolution topics.

Prachi Mehta

Breakout Session: What do Settlements Look Like For Diverse Groups and How Do We Plan For Them?  

Prachi Mehta began her career as a New York litigator and quickly evolved into a dispute settlements specialist. In the past 20 years, she has successfully mediated and arbitrated matters in India and the U.S. She is a mediator at the Supreme Court of India and a resource person for both the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India and the Delhi Dispute Resolution Society, Government of National Capital Territory, New Delhi, India. She founded TAG (The ADR Group) in Delhi to realise her passion for Alternate Dispute Resolution and works with organizations like Art of Living to introduce and enhance the use of mediations at grass-root level across various cities in India. Ms. Mehta has been awarded the prestigious title of “Weinstein JAMS Fellow”, in recognition of her commitment to Alternative Dispute Resolution and to the constructive resolution of conflict internationally. Apart from her many publications, she has also co-authored and published with the International Task Force funded by the United Nations on the topic of switching hats in ADR – Med-Arb, Arb-Med, Arb-Med-Arb. She is a IAM Distinguished Fellow and plays an active part on IAM’s Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Committee. 

Antone Melton-Meaux

Breakout Session: Closing: Tried-and-True: Mediator Systems to Guide Parties to Yes  

Antone Melton-Meauxis a full-time mediator and founder of Work Resolve Mediation. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Minnesota Law School teaching dispute resolution. Antone is an IAM Distinguished Fellow, a member of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, is rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell, and was selected for Best Lawyers in America®. Antone resides in Minneapolis with his wife, Genevieve. 

Kelly Overstreet Johnson

Breakout Session: Why Cases Don’t Settle and What We Can (sometimes) Do About That 

Kelly Overstreet Johnsonis a full-time Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit-Civil Mediator, Florida Supreme Court Qualified Arbitrator, and AAA arbitrator (commercial; large complex; employment and consumer panels). She is available for both virtual and in-person mediations and arbitrations throughout Florida and elsewhere. Ms. Johnson is a full-time neutral with Overstreet Johnson Mediation & Arbitration.  She has mediated and arbitrated disputes for over 15 years and spent 40 years as a litigator in state and federal courts. Her broad experience includes commercial and business disputes, employment-related issues, noncompetition agreements, probate and trust, general civil and tort claims, premises liability, nursing home and health care. Ms. Johnson proudly served as President of The Florida Bar in 2004-2005, the third woman to hold that position.  She also served as president of the Tallahassee Bar Association (its first woman president); and the Tallahassee Women Lawyers; in the ABA House of Delegates and on the Executive council of the ABA Litigation Section.  She presently serves as co-chair of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee for the ABA Section of Litigation (2022-2024), and served two terms on the Executive Council of The Florida Bar’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Section.



Steve Paul

Breakout Session: Deception in Mediation: Does Authenticity Need to be Compromised in the Interest of Reaching a Deal?

Steve Paul is a mediator based in Los Angeles, specializing in mediating employment, business, entertainment, real estate and personal injury disputes. Mr. Paul is also an Adjunct Professor at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine Law School, and mentors and trains attorneys and fellow mediators. He has been recognized by the Daily Journal both in 2012 and 2013 as one of 10 Top Neutral “Rising Stars” in California. Prior to becoming a mediator, Mr. Paul was legal and business affairs counsel for over 10 years at Warner Bros., where he provided legal oversight of day-to-day studio operations and advised on labor and employment issues. He has over twenty-five years of practical legal experience representing both plaintiffs and defendants, including representing a wide variety of businesses and industries on negotiation, transactional, and employment matters. Steve also devotes significant time to community service, including serving on several boards and pro bono projects. He is an IAM Distinguished Fellow and the immediate IAM Past-President.


Marcelo Perlman

Breakout Session: Cultural Issues and Challenges in International Mediations: A Case of Kungfu Panda vs Captain America?

Marcelo Perlman is a commercial mediator based in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He is an IAM Distinguished Fellow, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb), and has been included on the Panels of Distinguished Neutrals of The International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (CPR) and Mediators of the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR). He is a member of the Brazilian Advisory Board (BAB) of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (CPR), the Mediation Advisory Committee of Centro de Arbitragem e Mediação da Câmara de Comércio Brasil-Canadá (CAM-CCBC), the Mediation Thought Leadership Group of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb), as well as other mediation-related initiatives. Having been included in the ranking Commercial Mediation | WWL Thought Leaders: Global Elite 2024, Marcelo’s mediation practice has been recognized on a yearly basis in the international rankings Who’s Who Legal and Leaders League.

Jody Sin

Breakout Session: Cultural Issues and Challenges in International Mediations: A Case of Kungfu Panda vs Captain America?

Jody Sin was a dispute resolution lawyer for almost 20 years before she started a full-time mediation practice in 2011. Her mediation expertise spans a broad spectrum of commercial fields, including employment, discrimination and workplace issues, shareholders disputes, professional indemnity claims, defamation, and probate disputes.  Jody received her mediation accreditation from local and international institutions, including the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre, Hong Kong Mediation Accreditation Association Limited and International Mediation Institute (IMI). She is currently a mediation consultant of the Mediation Services Team of the World Bank Group, a Workplace Mediator for Asia Development Bank, and a member of the global mediation panel of the Office of the Ombudsman for the United Nations Funds and Programmes. In addition, she has been a CINERGY-certified conflict management coach since 2015 and provides conflict coaching services to parties who encounter workplace issues and disputes. Jody is an IAM Distinguished Fellow and a Weinstein JAMS international fellow.  Jody teaches mediation in the Faculty of Law of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She is currently a member of the Steering Committee on Mediation of the Department of Justice under the Secretary For Justice, Hong Kong and sits on the Mediation Committee and the Mediator Admissions Committee of the Law Society of Hong Kong.

To register for the Seattle conference, click here.