Why Cole Mediations?



"Mediation can be an exploratory, challenging, sometimes even taxing process, yet you usually emerge from it well ahead of where you entered."

How many mediations have you attended, and then left, dissatisfied that the mediator didn’t seem to “go to bat” for you to get your case settled?
Or, perhaps, you felt that you were placed in the role of excessively explaining the legal issues to the mediator because he or she didn’t seem to grasp their nuances–leaving you wondering how your interpretation of those issues was being relayed in private caucusing to the other side. Maybe you’re just tired of having to wait for months on end for your “go to” mediator to become available. To be candid, I have had such experiences more times than I can count.

My own clients’ frustration with overly-“soft-styles” and, sometimes, even an outright failure of the neutral to grasp the complexities inherent in and understand in order to resolve employment disputes is what motivated me to combine my extensive litigation and mediation background as an advocate, with the substantial “community-based” mediation training I have acquired in recent years, all in order to offer mediation services that you will likely find a bit different than what others provide, definitely more tailored to your case and, I predict, a lot more satisfying.

My approach to mediating disputes draws upon my skills, knowledge and tenacity to strike a balance between active listening and a dispassionate but forceful evaluation of the facts and law. Having represented hundreds of litigants in single-party discrimination, breach of contract, workplace health and safety, and union disputes, as well as having handled more wage and hour class actions than nearly any attorney in California, I offer unique insight into how both sides view a host of fact patterns and an appreciation of the high costs and burdens of litigation. Although well-known for handling plaintiff-side employment class actions, my representation of numerous business entities as well as my experience of serving as an employer for 20 years gives me an extremely well-balanced and broad understanding of how workers and employers view each another. This, along with my significant mediation training, provides me with a well-rounded and extensive toolbox of skills and approaches to help empower parties to resolve even the most acrimonious situations.

I recognize and never forget that the parties are completely in charge of the mediation process and its outcome, and that mediation (although usually driven by the hope and goal of settlement) need not be focused on a definable result; sometimes the parties need merely a forum for exploring issues and improving communication, while, at other times, the parties are in the midst of intense litigation and are struggling to find common ground in order to reach a more concrete resolution of the claims. Whatever the goals may be, we explore them, both in advance of the mediation, as well as during the mediation session and, in doing so, I commit to bringing the same energy that made me a successful litigator to the mediation process; if no settlement occurs, it won’t be for a lack of trying to find common ground or a lack of attention to the needs of the parties to “have their say.” Finally, since my mediation practice is limited to helping parties resolve employment disputes, no one should leave wondering whether the mediator understood the nuances of a legal or factual issue, or whether a position was properly communicated to the other side.