Message From the Chair
ADR Section Chair Patrick Russell
On behalf of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, I want to wish you all a very Happy Holiday Season and an even better New Year.
It is hard to believe that 2021 is rapidly coming to a close. Even more surreal is the fact that we have spent the entire year working through an ongoing and lengthy global pandemic.
Much has changed in the world during these times but also with great challenges come great opportunities to improve.

Improvements have been made in the legal profession on account of the pandemic. In fact, these improvements that we have so quickly adopted due to the pandemic were unheard of only a short time ago and were mostly only aspirations. That would include remote working arrangements, virtual court proceedings, and yes, online mediations. Given the relative success of these new ways of doing business, it appears that they are here to stay.
The winds of change will continue to blow well into the New Year. As recently reported in the Florida Bar News, the Florida Supreme Court is considering a plan to streamline the civil legal system that has been described as a major paradigm shift. Already under consideration are proposed revisions to the Florida Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators. All of these changes are in part fueled by the need to adapt our system and ways of doing business to the new normal we now face.
2022 is the Year of the Tiger. I would suggest this will be no paper tiger. We now have an opportunity to shape our profession for the better for many years to come. This is an excellent time to get involved in helping make policy and changes that are vital to our continued growth. I encourage everyone to volunteer and help serve in the Florida Bar and specifically with the ADR Section. Less dispute and more resolution is something we should all aspire to.
Through many voices can come many thoughts. Our thoughts turn to action. Through action there is change. Let us make a difference.

Salmon & Dulberg Dispute Resolution
Meaningful Mediation
Dates to Remember
  • January 1—Deadline for comments on proposed revisions to rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators
  • January 27—ADR Section meetings and happy hour during The Florida Bar Winter Meeting
  • March 4–5, 2022—Mentoring Academy for Certified Mediators (Tampa)
  • March 18–19, 2022—ADR Section Leadership Retreat and Executive Council Meeting (West Palm Beach)
Please send comments to the DRC on or before January 1
The Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules and Policy (ADRR&P) has undertaken the revision of Part I, Mediator Qualifications, and Part II, Standards of Professional Conduct, of the Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators.

The ADRR&P is seeking feedback on the revisions as shown at Amendments to Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators.
Please send your comments to the Dispute Resolution Center by email to, on or before Jan. 1, 2022.

Areas impacted by the proposed amendments include:
  1. Clearer definitions for conflict of interests
  2. Circumstances that require mandatory reporting
  3. Allowable content in Mediation Reports
  4. Guidance as to when it is appropriate to terminate a mediation
  5. Clarification as to what should be included in Opening Statements
  6. Addressing social media networking
  7. Stronger direction on confidentiality 
You asked for it and the DRC responded.
Revisions have been made to the requirements for Renewal of Certification and CME requirements. Click here for specifics.
Pursuant to rule 10.140, Rules for Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators, Operating Procedures and Authority, the Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules and Policy (ADRR&P) adopted Operating Procedures (OP) Governing the Certification of Mediators. These OP are effective November 1, 2021, and supersede any conflicting provisions In re: Procedures Governing Certification of Mediators, Fla. Admin. Order No. AOSC19-26 (May 28, 2019).

The Operating Procedures contain numerous revisions to the certification and renewal processes, including, but not limited to:
  1. Timeframes for certification background screenings have been extended through December 31, 2022.
  2. Mentorship continues to include both in-person and remote proceedings, and electronic signatures will continue to be accepted on mentorship forms.
  3. The requirement that 50% of continuing mediator education (CME) be conducted in a live format has been rescinded.
  4. Mentorship CME has been increased from a maximum of four hours to a maximum of eight hours.
  5. Mediators will only be required to complete 16 hours of CME regardless of how many certifications are held. The OP rescinds the “applicable to” language and revises the CME Reporting Form accordingly.
  6. Mediators may begin earning CME hours for their next renewal cycle upon submission of the mediator’s completed renewal form, renewal fees, and required CME hours for the previous cycle.
  7. An inactive status has been created and allows a mediator’s certification to remain inactive for up to five years.
  8. Procedures for lapsed certifications have been rewritten in their entirety. Mediators are eligible to renew their certifications up to a maximum of five years after lapse.
  9. New procedures for inactive and lapsed certifications are retroactive.
Questions can be directed to
Save the Dates! March 18–19 ADR Section Leadership Retreat, CLE and Executive Council Meeting
Please make plans to join us March 18–19, 2022, at the West Palm Beach Marriott.

  • Friday night—dinner
  • Saturday morning—3 hours of CLE
  • Saturday afternoon—EC meeting

All section members are welcome to attend the dinner and CLE. Details and registration will be available soon.
ADR Section Schedule During The Florida Bar Winter Meeting
ADR Section Executive Council and Emeritus Members: We are pleased to announce that the section’s leadership and members will meet in person and via Zoom* during The Florida Bar 2022 Winter Meeting.

Please join us at the Rosen Shingle Creek Orlando (room TBA) on Thursday, January 27.
WHO: Florida Bar ADR Section Executive Council, Emeritus Members and Section Members*
WHAT: Alternative Dispute Resolution Section – Executive Council/Member Meeting* and Happy Hour
WHEN:  Thursday, January 27, 2022
  • 2 – 4 PM Executive Council and Member Meeting*
  • 4 – 5:30 PM Networking Happy Hour
The Florida Bar has reserved a block of rooms at the Rosen Shingle Creek Orlando at a special group rate of $209 single/double occupancy. The rate is available until January 4, 2022, or until the block is sold out, whichever comes first. Reserve your room online or call 1-866-996-6338 and refer to The Florida Bar Winter Meeting.
*There will be a virtual option to view the meeting on Zoom, but participation and interaction will be limited.
Track Alternative Dispute Resolution Legislation
The Florida Bar offers a way to stay up-to-date on legislation that could affect our profession. The Bar's "Legislation of Interest to the Legal Profession" page contains links to bills that either advance or implicate an official Florida Bar legislative position, bills that are being monitored but are not presently addressed by any official Florida Bar legislation position, and bills that might be of interest to Bar sections and divisions.

This link goes directly to the sort for ADR-themed legislation, so you can monitor bills as they are posted.
Section CLE
The Florida Bar's InReach catalog contains the ADR Section's CLE programming for the past 18 months, so you can download online seminars and downloadable audio 24/7. Recent programs include the section's six-part wellness series, "Crushing it at Mediation" parts I - III, "Diversity: "I'm Not Yelling...I'm Just Passionate!" and more. Click here or below to go directly to the sort for ADR-themed courses.
ADR Section News
2022 Mentoring Academy for Certified Mediators
Registration opens soon for the Mentoring Academy for Certified Mediators, scheduled for March 4–5, 2022. Make plans to join us and expand your competency and experience.

  • Practice techniques and receive live, immediate feedback that will make you a better mediator.
  • Learn best practices for transitioning your practice from direct client representation to dispute resolution as a neutral.
  • Gain appropriate, ethical mediation techniques to address a complex circuit civil litigation.
  • Advance your experience in handling hurdles that can appear in complex cases.
  • Improve how you handle openings in circumstances ranging from hostile to congenial—what to do and when.
  • Get pro tips on how to test party-imposed limitations without overstepping ethical boundaries.
  • Increase your statewide network of mentors and co-mediators.

Stay tuned for updates from Academy Co-Chairs Chris Magee and John Salmon.
Mediation Week 2021
The ABA Dispute Resolution Section's Mediation Week 2021 was the third week of October and The Florida Bar ADR Section used the opportunity to spotlight section members and their thoughtful reflections on what mediation means to them. Here are some of their quotes:

  • When people talk, listen completely. Don't be thinking what you're going to say. Most people never listen. Nor do they observe. ~Natalie Paskiewicz
  • A meaningful mediation is started with the intent to establish a collaborative environment for the nonjudgmental sharing of information so that informed decisions can be made to resolve conflict. Less conflict, more resolution. ~Patrick Russell

  • Mediation is a transactional event in the middle of a litigation proceeding. Trial lawyers and mediators must approach the mediation table the way transactional lawyers approach the bargaining table: with active listening, empathy and joining problem-solving. ~Harold Oehler

  • The power in mediation is to allow the parties to feel the empowerment to make wiser choices and have self-determination. Give me liberty or give me choices! ~Shari Elessar
Ways to Beat the Season's Stress
The ADR Section's Health and Wellness page is a great place to find articles, tips and links to resources like our six-part wellness CLE series, The Florida Bar Mental Health & Wellness Center, Florida Lawyers Mutual Insurance Company's Lawyer Well-Being Center, the Young Lawyers Division #StigmaFreeYLD campaign and more.
This holiday season, please take time to practice mindfulness and take care of yourself.
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