Town Hall on Effective Representation in Mediation - November 5, 2014, at SDNY

On November 5, 2014, the FBA’s SDNY Chapter and ADR Section held a “Town Hall” on Effective Representation in Mediation. The program was a great success, due in no small measure to the Section/Chapter collaboration and the generosity of ADR Section Chair, Jeff Kichaven, who made a day’s round trip - from LA to New York and back - to join the program panelists. Quite likely, part of the program’s draw, held in the new SDNY Courthouse ceremonial Room 850, was the offer of cocktails before and after the one hour CLE program. The novelty of this program design was its active involvement of all audience members in a discussion, facilitated by Simeon H. Baum ( as moderator, of their advice to advocates on how to be effective representing parties in mediation. To keep audience participation lively and coherent, we held back on the single malt scotch until after the CLE was done.

Left to Right: Simeon H. Baum, Rebecca Price, ADR Section Chair Jeff Kichaven, Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska, SDNY

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SDNY Chapter President, Olivera Medenica, introduced the program and its moderator, Simeon Baum who quickly passed the baton to Chief Judge Loretta A. Preska. Judge Preska expressed the Court’s appreciation for the mediators who were present and the service offered by Court’s mediation program. Many of the 120 persons present were members of the Court’s ADR panel, who had been invited by the next speaker, Rebecca Price, the SDNY’s Mediation Supervisor. Following Rebecca’s remarks, Jeff Kichaven modeled mediator advice by sharing his tips on how to “win” for one’s client in mediation. Jeff presented his excellent and thoughtful remarks – that clearly come from two decades of experience – in a somewhat provocative way that did the trick. It gave Simeon Baum, the Program Moderator a set of issues that were perfect for presentation to the sophisticated group of mediators who filled the room. The ensuing discussion addressed questions on: (a) the nature of winning – as value creation – in mediation, in a manner that is consistent with mediation’s potential for going beyond competition to cooperation; (b) the role of evaluation, in a process where the parties’ own thoughts and decisions are key; (c) the use and timing of caucuses and joint sessions; (d) effective preparation for mediation; and (e) effective openings by representatives in mediation – to foster open dialogue, information disclosure, realistic assessment of alternatives to the deal, and a spirit conducive to understanding and deal making.

This event, presented by the FBA’s SDNY Chapter and ADR Section, was co-sponsored by the New York State Bar Association’s Sections on Dispute Resolution, Commercial and Federal Litigation, and Labor and Employment; as well as by New York City’s Metropolitan Black Bar Association. The presenters offer their thanks to all attendees, panelists, sponsors, and the Court for their support. We note, with special thanks, the extraordinary efforts of SDNY Chapter members, Elyssa Emsellem, who handled CLE, and Stacy Yeung, who handled a variety of logistical issues – along with Chris McClure of Simeon Baum’s office.
2012 E-Discovery Presentation

On September 12th, 2012 the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, together with the Southern District of New York Chapter, co-sponsored a CLE event on E-Discovery with special guest speaker Hon. Loretta A. Preska, Chief Judge of the Southern District of New York. Topics discussed included: Mediation & Discovery, Key Word Mediation to Facilitate Efficient & Effective Electronic Discovery, Role of Special Master in E-Discovery, E-Discovery in JAMS & AAA Arbitration. The panel consisted of Simeon H. Baum, Esq., Resolve Mediation Services, Inc.; Yoav Griver, Esq., Zeichner Ellman & Krause LLP; and Daniel Garrie, Law & Forensics, LLC.

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