Two Articles from BLC Published in Spring Issue of Family Mediation Quarterly
BLC Founder David Hoffman and BLC Affiliate Katherine Triantafillou have published articles in the Spring 2013 issue of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation's Family Mediation Quarterly. David's article is titled, "Mediation and the Unauthorized Practice of Law: Practical Considerations." Katherine's article is titled, "Same-Sex Conflicts: A Primer for Mediators." Click here to read the articles.
Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group Meeting Held at BLC on "Practicing our Practice Group Skills'
The latest Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group meeting was held on May 7, 2013 at BLC.The topic for the event was “Practicing our Practice Group Skills” and was led by Pam Freeman, J.D. Attendees learned how to advance their collaborative law skills in building a collaborative team; set the ground work to work effectively as a team; and prepare to work as an effective team member.
BLC Members on Faculty for Advanced Family Law Mediation Training
Six people from BLC served on the faculty of the first Advanced Family Law Mediation Training, offered by Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education: Israela Brill-Cass, Rachel Goldman, David Hoffman, Vicki Shemin, and BLC Affiliates Katherine Triantafillou and Dr. Richard Wolman on May 7, 2013.
BLC Founder Leads Workshop on "Managing the Tension Between Relationship and Results"
BLC Founder David Hoffman led a workshop at the annual XPX (Exit Planning Exchange) Summit at the Bentley College Conference Center on May 3, 2013. This year's theme for the conference is "The Art and Science of Collaborative Innovation." David led a workshop entitled "Managing the Tension Between Relationship and Results: The Crossroads of Collaboration."
BLC Members and Affiliate Teach at MCLE Civil Mediation Workshop
BLC’s David Hoffman, Israela Brill-Cass and affiliate Katherine Triantafillou taught and served as role play coaches at MCLE's Civil Mediation Workshop on April 29, 2013. This Workshop taught: the steps of the mediation process; the role of the mediator; mediation skills/strategies; listening; using neutral language; rephrasing; asking follow-up questions; summarizing; identifying issues; negotiating agreement; note taking; agreement writing; ethical and legal issues in mediation; values; bias awareness; personally sensitive issues; physical/substance abuse; cultural diversity; mediation demonstration; and coached role-plays.
Fourth Conciliation Training with the Administrative Office of the Trial Court for BLC Executive Director
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass was at the Massachusetts Bar Association teaching conciliation as part of a team organized by the Administrative Office of the Trial Court (AOTC) on April 26, 2013. This is a joint training for the Massachusetts and Boston Bar Association and it is Israela's fourth conciliation training with the AOTC.
BLC Affiliate Presents on GAL Work at Regis College
BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman presented on "The GAL and Children's Therapeutic Privilege" as part of the Massachusetts Association of Guardians ad Litem at Regis College on April 26, 2013.
Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group Meeting Held at BLC on "Divorce Consultations - A New Paradigm"
The latest Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group meeting was held at BLC on April 9, 2013. The topic for the event was "Divorce Consultations – A New Paradigm." Heidi Webb, Esq. presented along with her Divorce Consultations colleague Gina Cronin. Divorce Consultations provides strategic advice to individuals who are contemplating divorce, with the goal of streamlining the divorce process and reducing the financial and emotional toll on clients and their families during this challenging life event. After assessing each client’s post-divorce goals for restructuring their family, Divorce Consultations helps clients develop a roadmap for productively resolving their unique financial, psychological and legal challenges. Heidi Webb, Esq. is a trained Mediator and Collaborative Attorney.
BLC Founder Delivers Workshops at ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Conference
At the annual Conference of the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution in Chicago on April 5, BLC member David Hoffman spoke in two workshops: (a) "Getting to the Heart of the Matter: Distinguishing Mediation from Settlement Conferences" and (b) "Managing the 'Negotiation' Within: How Mediators Can Work with Our Many Sub-Personalities."
BLC Executive Director Receives Accolade in Boston Magazine
BLC Executive Director Serves as Conciliation Trainer
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass was a trainer on the second day of conciliation training organized by the Administrative Office of the Trial Court (AOTC). The training was sponsored by the Essex County Bar Association for new court conciliators and was held at Northern Essex Community College on March 22, 2013. This is Israela’s third conciliation training with the AOTC.
BLC Executive Director Leads Getting Along Workshop at Emerson College
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass led a workshop for students on Getting Along at Emerson College on March 21, 2013. Israela teaches Conflict and Negotiation, and Mediation Facilitation and Dialogue at Emerson.
BLC Affiliate Presents Diversity Workshop
On March 19, 2013, BLC Affiliate Katherine Triantafillou presented a workshop on diversity to the Senior Partners for Justice monthly luncheon. Judge Ginsburg, the founder and Director of the group, wrote that "we were lucky to have someone so experienced in diversity matters to lead us through that conversation."
BLC Founder Presents on "Mediator as Moral Witness"
BLC member David Hoffman presented a talk on "The Mediator as Moral Witness" at a meeting of the Massachusetts Bar Association ADR Committee, at the MBA's offices in Boston on March 13, 2013.
Remembering Roger Fisher, Co-Author of "Getting to Yes"
BLC's David Hoffman was one of the speakers at the Harvard Negotiation Law Review Symposium on the life and legacy of the late Prof. Roger Fisher, co-author of “Getting to Yes” on March 2, 2013.
BLC Founder Serves on Family Law Mediation Panel
BLC member David Hoffman presented with Gina Arons, Hon E. Chouteau Levine and William Levine on "It's No Sin: Filing and Serving a Complaint Before or During Family Mediation" at the Wellesley Free Library on February 13, 2013. The Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation Professional Development panelists discussed many of the protections, rights and obligations that will arise from the commencement of a legal action during family law mediation; the challenges to mediators when considering if, when and how to discuss these issues with mediation clients; the range of potential reactions by mediation clients, emotional, strategic and tactical; and the potential impacts on the mediation itself.
Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group Presentation at BLC on the Language of Divorce Cases
The latest meeting of the Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group was held Tuesday, February 5th at Boston Law Collaborative. Kate Fanger, Esq. presented on: How Can You Say That? The Language of Divorce Cases. She explored these issues: How much does it matter what words you use? (Is there any important difference between “difficult” and “hard” and “complicated” and “challenging”?); Do deliberate word choices change what gets heard, and by whom? (“But that’s not what I meant” – intent vs. effect); How can you use language to shift the action from “verbal tennis” (where information or insult is simply being lobbed or smashed back and forth) to effective conversation (the exchange of ideas and understanding)? This was an interactive workshop for discovering and improving the choice of words to help all involved in a divorce case – clients and professionals – successfully navigate the minefield of emotion that gets expressed verbally at the divorce table, whether one-on-one, in group meetings or professional-to-professional. Words can float boats or sink good will. Choosing words carefully is not the small stuff, in work or life. Subtle or obvious, words can be powerful tools, weapons, levers, invitations and more. Guests thought about how to tame blame, manage pain (and other emotions), cure misunderstandings, encourage imagination, reframe, and remove obstacles to negotiation. Kate Fanger, Esq. is the sole proprietor of Kate Fanger Mediation in Somerville, MA, where she provides a variety of services including divorce mediation, conflict coaching, marriage mediation, elder mediation, professional mentoring and communication coaching for parents and teens and collaborative law. Kate is a vice president on the Board of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation.
January 2013 Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council Newsletter Features Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group
The Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group was featured in the MCLC January 2013 Newsletter. Click here to read more. On March 5, the group is planning a program on Divorce Coaching. Check the News page for more information on this event, coming soon!
BLC Member Again Recognized in Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers
BLC's Vicki Shemin was selected for inclusion in the 2013 edition of the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers. This recognition is exclusively for women attorneys who have received the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards from their peers. Less than 5% of women lawyers have been recognized with an AV Preeminent Rating. Vicki has been selected continuously since 2011.
Three BLC Members Recognized as Among New England's Top Lawyers in 2013
BLC’s David Hoffman, Rachel Goldman and Vicki Shemin were recognized by Martindale-Hubbell as New England's Top Lawyers in 2013, based on their AV Preeminent rating through a survey of their peers.
BLC Project Manager Hosts Fundraiser for Women's Empowerment
BLC Project Manager Annie O'Connell hosted a fundraiser viewing of Half the Sky in connection with her volunteer work as a Regional Director with the Borgen Project on January 16, 2013. Half the Sky is a documentary that focuses on turning women's oppression into opportunity worldwide. The Borgen Project is a non-profit national advocacy campaign that works to alleviate global poverty.
BLC Members Teach at MCLE Family Mediation Training
BLC’s David Hoffman, Israela Brill-Cass, Vicki Shemin, and affiliates Katherine Triantafillou and Dr. Richard Wolman taught and served as role play coaches at MCLE's January 2013 Family Mediation Training program.
Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group Presentation at BLC on Business Valuation
The latest Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group meeting was held on January 8, 2013 at BLC. The next topic is: “A Collaborative Approach to Business Valuation – The Pros and Pitfalls”. Presenters David E. Consigli CPA, ABV and Thomas DeBlasio CPA, CVA discussed the following: 1) helping clients understand the valuation and income processes of a business and how we explain it in straightfoward terms; 2) applicability of business valuation in the alternative dispute resolution setting; 3) specific case examples; and 4) how to avoid pitfalls and breakdowns in the process. David is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and has the Accreditation in Business Valuation issued by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. David consults on various valuation engagements including estate tax planning, marital dissolution, shareholder disputes, and merger and acquisitions. David has valued over 135 small to medium sized businesses in various industries. Thomas is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and performs business valuation services in the areas of divorce, equity financing, estate tax planning, buy/sell agreements and shareholder disputes. He serves as treasurer for various for-profit and non-profit organizations.
Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group Presentation at BLC on Telepresence Technology in Separation and Divorce
BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman, Ph.D., along with Richard Pomerance, Ph.D., presented a talk entitled “Telepresence Technology in Separation and Divorce: Enhanced Visitation or a Slippery Slope for Relocation?” at the Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group meeting at BLC on December 4, 2012.Dr. Wolman is an experienced clinician, mediator, teacher and researcher. A faculty member of Harvard Medical School, he is a clinical psychologist with expertise in psychotherapy with individuals, families and children, and president and research director of PsychoMatrix. He also serves as parenting coordinator, GAL, and consults with family law attorneys, parents and children experiencing the divorce process. His research focuses on spirituality, child custody, psychotherapy, dreams and child development. Dr. Pomerance has been a couples and individual psychotherapist, specializing in complex, multi-axial cases. He extended this work into coaching, parent coordination, and GAL activities, and more recently has been concerned with the process of relationship decision-making, in both personal and professional contexts.
BLC Founder Teaches Mediation Workshop at Harvard Law School
On November 28, 2012, David Hoffman taught an Advanced Mediation Workshop on the subject of "Mediator as Moral Witness," at the Harvard Mediation Program at Harvard Law School.
BLC Founder Speaks at New England School of Law Symposium and Serves on Faculty for ABA Training on Mediation
On November 15, 2012, BLC’s David Hoffman was a featured speaker at the New England School of Law Symposium on ADR and the Courts, and served on the faculty of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution’s annual training on Mediation and Mediation Advocacy Skills in Boston.
BLC Member Lectures on Collaborative Law at Brandeis University
BLC Member Rachel Goldman was a guest lecturer in the Conflict Analysis and Intervention course at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts on November 13, 2012. Rachel focused her lecture on Collaborative Law as an effective dispute resolution process.
Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group Meeting Presents at BLC on How to Use a Financial Planner in the Collaborative Process
Jessie L. Foster (CFP, CDFA, MBA) presented on How to Effectively Use a Financial Neutral in the Collaborative Process at the Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group meeting held at BLC on November 6, 2012. The presentation addressed issues of struggle on when to bring a financial neutral into the process and how to introduce the idea to a client. Jessie reviewed the evolving role of the Divorce Financial Neutral and how to effectively use one within mediation and the collaborative process. We discussed the challenges team members have encountered and ways to provide our clients with a clear understanding of the financial options available to them.
BLC Article on "The Psychology of Mediation" Accepted for Publication
BLC member David Hoffman and BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman wrote an article, "The Psychology of Mediation," which has been accepted by the Cardozo Journal of Conflict Resolution for publication in the spring of 2013.
BLC Featured in Fall 2012 Issue of Family Mediation Quarterly
BLC's Of Counsel Vicki Shemin's article on "The Squid and the Whale" presentation is featured in the Fall 2012 issue of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation's Family Mediation Quarterly. "Although dated in many ways, this film has withstood the test of time. It resonates across the generations and across professions and socioeconomic classes. Each time the viewer watches the movie it manages to grow even more powerful and more complex, and still offers lessons applicable to our clients — and our own families." Click here to read the full article.
BLC Founding Partner Co-Leads Mediation Training at Harvard Negotiation Institute
BLC member David Hoffman co-led a five-day mediation training at the Harvard Negotiation Institute, with Prof. Robert Mnookin, Gary Friedman, and Mooly Dinnar from October 29 - November 2, 2012. The training was sponsored by the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School. To see the Fall 2012 class, click here.
BLC Ranked as a “Best Law Firm” by U.S. News & World Report
For the 4th year in a row BLC was ranked as a “Best Law Firm” by U.S. News & World Report. BLC received a Tier 1 Ranking in Boston for Arbitration, Family Law Mediation & Mediation. Read More
BLC Member Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America
Rachel Goldman was selected by her peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2013 in the fields of Family Law and Family Law Mediation. She joins BLC member David Hoffman, who is listed in Mediation, Arbitration and Collaborative Law.
BLC Members Selected as New England Super Lawyers
BLC Affiliate Profiled in MCLE Book on Breaking Barriers
The end of October marks the publication of "Breaking Barriers: The Unfinished Story of Women Lawyers and Judges in Massachusetts" by Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, in which BLC Affiliate Katherine Triantafillou is one of the profiled women lawyers. As described by MCLE, the book is a "unique account of Massachusetts women's progress of extraordinary accomplishment of some of the most impressive members of the bar...women who have faced head on and broken professional, societal, racial and educational barriers in their careers..."
BLC Affiliate Presents Research on "Telepresence Technology in Separation and Divorce"
BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman and Dr. Richard Pomerance presented their research "Telepresence Technology in Separation and Divorce" to the International Society of Presence Research conference in Philadelphia on October 25, 2012.
BLC Sponsored Conflict Studies Conference
BLC proudly sponsored the UMass Boston Conflict Studies Conference that was held on October 19th and 20, 2012.
BLC Founder Moderates Workshop at International Academy of Mediators Conference
The International Academy of Mediators held its semi-annual conference in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and BLC’s David Hoffman (who is a Distinguished Fellow in the Academy) co-chaired the conference committee. He moderated a Workshop on Co-Mediation and Diversity Issues on October 13, 2012.
BLC Affiliate Meets with Greece's Former First Lady to Discuss Mediation
In September, Katherine Triantafillou met with the former first lady of Greece, Margarita Papandreou, to discuss ways of bringing private mediation programs to the country. Although Greece's court system allows for court sponsored mediation and mediators, it does not yet have a robust private mediation component. As the first lady, Mrs. Papandreou was instrumental in legal reform efforts in family laws, and is extremely interested in alternative dispute resolution.
Dr. Zibbell Speaks at First Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group Meeting at BLC
The first Fall 2012 meeting of the Greater Boston Collaborative Practice Group was held on Tuesday, October 2 at the offices of Boston Law Collaborative. Dr. Robert A. Zibbell spoke about a cutting-edge pilot program being launched in the Commonwealth known as the “Interdisciplinary Settlement Conference: An Emerging Form of ADR.” Dr. Zibbell has 32 years experience as a clinical GAL and one year of experience as part of the pilot project interdisciplinary dream team selected by Chief Justice Paula Carey. The hope is that Interdisciplinary Settlement Conferences will provide another proactive courtroom settlement approach to families who might otherwise well be headed for litigation.
BLC Member Serves on MCLC Faculty for Collaborative Training
For the 4th consecutive year, BLC’s Rachel Goldman served on the faculty of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council’s Three-Day Introductory Interdisciplinary Collaborative Training. The training took place at the Conference Center at Bentley College in Waltham, Massachusetts on September 20-22, 2012.
BLC Executive Director Helps Train New Conciliators for Berkshire Probate Court Program
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass taught Conciliator Communication Skills and Confliction Resolution Skills during the Berkshire Probate Court Conciliation Training in Pittsfield, Massachusetts on September 14, 2012. The training was sponsored by the Administrative Office of the Trial Court (AOTC) for new court conciliators. This is Israela’s second training with the AOTC.
BLC Staff Present at Family Law Paralegal Seminar
BLC Receives “Best Law Firm” Ranking
On November 1, 2011, U.S. News & World Report, the leading rankings publication in the United States, partnered with Best Lawyers® to name BLC a “Best Law Firm” in Alternative Dispute Resolution and Family Law Mediation. This second issue includes more than 9,600 firms in 75 different practice areas nationally, and 119 practice areas arranged by metropolitan area. BLC is recognized as a Tier 1 law firm for Family Law Mediation and Tier 2 for Arbitration, Family Law and Mediation. The U.S. News – Best Lawyers press release is available here.
BLC Collaborates with MCLE for Divorce Mediation Training
Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education offered a divorce mediation training, chaired by retired Probate and Family Court Judge Edward Ginsburg on July 9-13, 2012. BLC's Executive Director/ADR Case Manager Israela Brill-Cass was part of the faculty for Day 1 of that training and BLC Member Rachel Goldman was part of the faculty for Day 2. BLC Member David Hoffman led the third day, with help from BLC Affiliates Dr. Richard Wolman and Katherine Triantafillou. This is BLC’s 15th time collaborating with MCLE to offer this training.
BLC Executive Director Teaching at Emerson College
BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass will be teaching at Emerson College this fall. Israela will be an adjunct professor, teaching Conflict and Negotiation in the Department of Communication Studies.
BLC Founder Gives Plenary Talk on Conflict and Dispute Resolution in NYC
BLC's David Hoffman gave the plenary talk on “’Do the Right Thing’: Conflict Resolvers, Lawyers and the Keys to Managing Intractable Disputes” at the annual conference of the Greater New York chapter of the Association for Conflict Resolution at Cardozo School of Law in New York City on June 21, 2012.
BLC Members Deliver Talk on “The Psychology of Collaborative Negotiation”
BLC's David Hoffman and Dr. Richard Wolman were the featured speakers on “The Psychology of Collaborative Negotiation” at the Members Meeting of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council at the Wellesley Community Center on June 14, 2012.
Amicus Brief Filed by BLC and Other Mediation Groups Acknowledged in SJC Decision
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court’s recent opinion IN THE MATTER OF ANTHONY RAOUL BOTT (in which BLC and other mediation groups filed an amicus brief), supports the view that mediation does not constitute the practice of law. Click here to read the decision.
The Indian Arbitrator Gives Nod to BLC for Efforts in Collaborative Lawyering
BLC Members Teach Advanced Divorce Mediation
BLC Members Presents Workshop on Alimony Reform
BLC’s Rachel Goldman presented a workshop on the new Alimony Reform Act of 2011 to the Financial Planning Association’s Massachusetts Chapter in Sandwich, Massachusetts on May 10th.
BLC Member Honored for Cradles to Crayons Volunteer Work
BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass was recently honored by Cradles to Crayons (C2C) at their first Volunteer Appreciation Dinner. Israela was recognized as having contributed more than 250 volunteer hours to C2C at their warehouse and organizing donation drives. C2C is a non-profit organization based in Brighton, MA that provides essentials such as clothing, shoes, toys and school supplies to homeless and low-income children across Massachusetts. To learn more about C2C and how you can get involved, click here.
BLC Affiliate and Colleague Complete Study on Virtual Visitation
Dr. Richard Wolman and Dr. Richard Pomerance have completed their study on Virtual Visitation under the auspices of the Honorable Paula Carey, Chief Justice for the Family and Probate Courts for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The study, “Virtual Presence Technology in Divorce and Separation” will be published this summer and will be available on the BLC website.
BLC Members Lead Civil Mediation Training
BLC’s David Hoffman led the first day of Civil Mediation Training at Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education on April 30th, along with BLC’s Israela Brill-Cass and BLC Affiliates Katherine Triantafillou, Esq. and Dr. Richard Wolman.
BLC and ABA Co-Sponsor Advanced Family Law Mediation Training
BLC the American Bar Association Sections of Family Law and Dispute Resolution co-sponsored an Advanced Family Law Mediation Training at BLC’s offices on May 2-4. The 20-Hour Advanced Family Mediation Training “Breaking Impasse and Managing Difficult Personalities in Mediation” was designed to provide an in-depth look at the mediation process while examining the various reasons impasse occurs (economic, emotional, cultural, psychological, etc.) to reaching agreement. The training provided participants you with the tools and resources needed to break through these barriers and impasse in mediation. BLC founding member David Hoffman led the training along with BLC team members Israela Brill-Cass, Rachel Goldman, Don Greenstein, Vicki Shemin, Dr. Richard Wolman and Katherine Triantafillou. They were joined by Marguerite Fletcher, Susan Miller, Ranna Parekh, and Douglas Reynolds.
BLC Member Teaches Collaborative Law in Vermont
BLC Member Rachel B. Goldman taught a two-day multidisciplinary collaborative law training sponsored by the Vermont Bar Association Section of Collaborative Law along with Doris Tennant, Esq. and Sanford Portnoy, Ph.D. on April 20 and 21 in Montpelier, Vermont.
BLC Founder Delivers Workshop on Practice Groups and Diversity and Presents Award at ABA Conference in Washington, D.C.
BLC’s Founder David Hoffman gave a workshop on “Reflective Practice Groups: An Opportunity to Increase Diversity and Enhance Practice” with co-presenters Daniel Bowling, Esq., Marvin Johnson, Esq., and Homer La Rue, Esq. at the 14th Annual Conference of the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution in Washington, DC. David also presented the annual ABA Lawyer as Problem Solver Award to Kenneth Feinberg, Esq. and Harry Tindall, Esq.
BLC Founder Delivers Presentation on Negotiation
BLC Founder David Hoffman gave a talk on “Getting to Yes: Exploring the Deeper Dimensions of Negotiation” at the monthly meeting of the Exit Planning Exchange at Babson College on April 11. To read David’s blog post on this topic, click here.
BLC Members Participate in “The Squid and the Whale” Panel Discussion
BLC Members David Hoffman and Vicki Shemin participated in a panel discussion of “The Squid and the Whale” on opening night of the Second Annual Hollywood Scriptures Firm Series hosted by the Boston Museum of Fine Arts on April 12. The panel also included Hon. Paula Carey, Hon. Angela Ordonez and John Fiske, Esq.
BLC Executive Director Helps Train New Conciliators for Lowell District Court Program
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass taught Conciliator Communication Skills and Confliction Resolution Skills during the Lowell District Court Conciliation Training at the Middlesex Community College Law Center in December 2011. The training was sponsored by the Administrative Office of the Trial Court for new court conciliators. To read more about the conciliation program, which allows parties in civil cases the opportunity to determine the outcome of their dispute rather than having a decision imposed upon them by the court, click here.
BLC Members Present on “The Psychology of Collaborative Negotiation”
BLC’s Founding Member David Hoffman and BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman presented a talk on “The Psychology of Collaborative Negotiation” at the monthly meeting of the Greater Boston Collaborative Law Practice Group at BLC’s offices on April 3, 2012.
BLC Member Teaches Collaborative Law
BLC’s Rachel B. Goldman taught about Collaborative Law in the Negotiation course at New England Law Boston on March 26, 2012.
BLC Member Co-Leads Workshop on Divorce and Religion
On March 20, 2012, BLC’s Rachel B. Goldman co-led a workshop with Rabbi Amy Scheinerman on “Divorce and Get: Current Legal and Religious Possibilities to Reduce Pain and Provide Support” at the Central Conference of American Rabbis Convention in Boston.
BLC Founder David Hoffman Quoted in March 2012 Issue of Real Simple Magazine
BLC Founder David Hoffman contributed to the article, “How to Control Your Anger and Keep Conflict at Bay,” that appeared in Real Simple Magazine’s March 2012 issue. He suggests that rather than taking the opposite side in a discussion, agreeing with your opponent can “neutralize a potentially combative interaction by finding a point that you and your opponent agree on.” Click here to read the full article in Real Simple Magazine.
BLC Founder David Hoffman Receives John Fiske Award for Excellence in Mediation
BLC Founder David Hoffman received the John Fiske Award for excellence in mediation and contributions to the family mediation field. Click here to read more from Family Mediation Quarterly’s President’s Page.
BLC Trains on Divorce Mediation
In January 2012, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education offered a divorce mediation training, chaired by retired Probate and Family Court Judge Edward Ginsburg. BLC's Executive Director/ADR Case Manager Israela Brill-Cass was a trainer for Day 1 and BLC Member Rachel B. Goldman was part of the team for Day 2. BLC Member BLC's David Hoffman led the third day, with help from BLC Affiliates Dr. Richard Wolman and Katherine Triantafillou, Esq., and BLC Attorney Vicki Shemin.
BLC Member Speaks on “Alimony Reform in Massachusetts – What Every Financial Advisor Should Know”
BLC Member Rachel B. Goldman presented a workshop on the new Alimony Reform Act of 2012 to the Financial Planning Association’s Massachusetts Chapter on January 31, 2012 at the Natick Marriott Courtyard.
BLC Executive Director Teaches Conciliator Communication Skills and Conflict Resolution Skills
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass taught Conciliator Communication Skills and Confliction Resolution Skills during the second day of the 8 hour Lowell District Court Conciliation Training at the Middlesex Community College Law Center on December 16. The training was sponsored by the Administrative Office of the Trial Court for new court conciliators.
BLC Presents "The Good Wife"
The second event in BLC’s Film Series presented an episode of “The Good Wife,” devoted to the mediation of a medical malpractice case on January 18. Please RSVP to Annie O’Connell (aoconnell@BostonLawCollaborative.com) for one or both of the upcoming events in the film series that start at 5 p.m. at BLC – we supply popcorn, pizza, and beverages:
February 7 - “High Noon,” with Gary Cooper and Grace Kelley – the classic 1952 Western contains fascinating negotiation scenes as Cooper tries to persuade town residents to stand up to a gang of killers, plus at the very end, some gun-slinging ‘alternative dispute resolution.’
March 15 - “Fairly Legal,” the first TV show about a mediator (played by the engaging Sara Shahi) on the USA Network; we will watch some hilarious and intense mediations – excerpts from the show’s first two seasons – including the mediation of a convenience store hold-up.
BLC Member and Affiliate Present on "The Psychology of Mediation"
BLC's David Hoffman and BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman presented a two-hour advanced mediation workshop on "The Psychology of Mediation" for the Harvard Mediation Program on December 5, 2011. The workshop focused on a book chapter of the same title that David and Richard have written for a mediation manual that will be published in 2012 by Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education.
BLC Executive Director Participates in Peer Mediation Teaching
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass participated, for the fourth year, as part of a team teaching Peer Mediation to students at Newton North High School on December 6, 2011.
BLC Members Selected as New England Super Lawyers in Fall 2011
BLC’s Executive Director and ADR Program Manager Israela Brill-Cass and BLC founding partner David Hoffman were selected New England Super Lawyers this fall – a list published annually by Thomson-Reuters of lawyers viewed by their peers as being in the top 5% of the profession.
BLC Executive Director Speaks About Careers in Alternative Dispute Resolution at Suffolk University Law School
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass spoke about careers in Alternative Dispute Resolution on November 17, 2011 at SUSL’s Alumni Fall Career Forum. The format was table-talk discussions with students, and the program was sponsored by the Rappaport Center for Law & Public Service and the SULS Career Development Office.
BLC Member Lectures on Collaborative Law at Brandeis University
BLC Member Rachel Goldman lectured about Collaborative Law as an effective conflict resolution process in the Conflict Analysis and Intervention course on November 8, 2011 at Brandeis University.
BLC Executive Director on Mediation in the “Real World” Panel
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass was one of the speakers at a panel discussion on Mediation in the “Real World” on November 9, 2011 at Suffolk University Law School.
Meeting on “Diversity and ADR: Basic Diversity Awareness Concepts and Skills for Working Across Differences with Colleagues and Clients”
Doug Reynolds presented and facilitated the discussion on “Diversity and ADR: Basic Diversity Awareness Concepts and Skills for Working Across Differences with Colleagues and Clients” on November 10, 2011 at BLC.
BLC Member Presents Workshop on “25 Wild and Crazy Ideas for Breaking Impasse”
BLC Member David Hoffman and Forrest "Woody" Mosten presented a workshop entitled, "25 Wild and Crazy Ideas for Breaking Impasse" at the International Academy of Collaborative Professional's 12th Annual Forum in San Francisco on October 29, 2011.
BLC Member Teaches Collaborative Law to Students at New England Law Boston
BLC Member Rachel Goldman taught students about Collaborative Law in the Negotiation course at New England Law Boston on October 31, 2011.
Presentation at BLC on “Cultural Dynamics in Conflict Communications”
Robert W. Kubacki, JD, MPA, conflict competency coach, mediator and adjunct faculty at Clark, Duquesne and Northeastern Universities presented on and invited participants to consider the role of culture in conflict communication. His October 11, 2011 presentation discussed: What is culture? What is conflict? What is communication? and, How does culture influence conflict communication? This interactive intercultural lunch time meeting included an opportunity to observe cultural dynamics and some tips on how to recognize culture as a dynamic in conflict communication.
BLC Member Gives Plenary Talk on “The Use of the Internal Family Systems Model in Mediation”
BLC Member David Hoffman and Prof. Len Riskin gave a plenary talk on “The Use of the Internal Family Systems Model in Mediation” at the annual conference of the Center for Self Leadership which was held in Boston October 14-16, 2011.
BLC Member Presents Workshop on “Bringing Peace into the Room: Managing Workplace Conflict”
BLC Member David Hoffman presented a workshop on “Bringing Peace into the Room: Managing Workplace Conflict” for the Human Resources Leadership Forum at Bentley University on October 18, 2011.
BLC Member Presents Workshop on “How to Talk to Clients About Collaborative Law”
BLC Member Rachel Goldman presented a workshop with Gina Arons, Psy.D. on “How to Talk to Clients About Collaborative Law” at the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council’s Civil Committee meeting in Wellesley, Massachusetts on October 19, 2011.
BLC Member Leads Workshop on Dispute Resolution Options
BLC Member David Hoffman will lead a workshop on dispute resolution options for the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar, which held its annual retreat in Boston on October 20, 2011.
BLC Members and Affiliate Participate in MCLE’s 3rd Annual ADR and the Law Conference
BLC Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass Co-Chaired MCLE’s 3rd Annual ADR and the Law Conference on October 24, 2011. The Conference included: Keynote Speaker David E. Matz, Esq. who share his experiences mediating and negotiating in the Middle East; a Plenary Panel on Dispute Resolution in the International Arena; a Judicial Forum on the Future of ADR in the Courts; and workshops including Sports/Labor Management Arbitration, Cutting Issues in Environmental ADR, Arts and Entertainment Law Conflicts, and the Team Approach to Conflicts in Family Law. BLC Member David Hoffman and BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman presented at the Conference and this is the third time Israela serves as Co-Chair.
BLC Attorney Named as One of the Top Women Lawyers in Northeast
BLC Member Speaks as Panelist on Arbitration in Divorce Cases
BLC Member David Hoffman was one of the speakers at a panel discussion on the use of arbitration in divorce cases, sponsored by the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation on September 14, 2011 at the Weston Public Library.
BLC Member Leads Training for Mediators for the U.S. Court of Appeals
BLC Member David Hoffman led a training for Mediators of the U.S. Court of Appeals on September 15, 2011 at their annual conference in San Diego. Hoffman discussed the use of caucusing in mediation and “the negotiation within.”
Training Mediators in North Dakota
BLC Member David Hoffman was hired by the North Dakota courts to provide a one-day advanced mediation training for mediators who handle custody disputes. The training was held on May 19, 2011 in Bismarck, ND.
Training for Relationship and Dating Coaches
BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman and his wife Peggy Wolman – in conjunction with New York Times best-selling author Rachel Greenwald – presented a workshop on relationship and dating coaching at BLC on June 5, 2011. The workshop was well attended by therapists, coaches, and other professionals.
BLC Welcomes New Affiliate
We are pleased to announce that Jean M. Kolling, Esq., will be joining BLC as an Affiliate on May 1, 2011. Jean is a principal at Lourie & Cutler and her practice focuses on estate planning, tax planning and business planning for individuals, families, businesses and charitable organizations. A graduate of Georgetown University and Harvard Law School, Jean is a trained mediator and is admitted to practice law in both Illinois and Massachusetts. Jean serves as an advisor and board member for several charitable organizations and her articles have appeared in Estate Planning Magazine and the New England Real Estate Journal among other publications.
Cradles to Crayons Celebrates Grand Opening
Cradles to Crayons (C2C) recently celebrated the grand opening of their new Giving Factory in Brighton. As part of C2C’s grand opening, they debuted their new “Everyday Essentials” video. BLC has been volunteering at C2C since 2006 and BLC’s Executive Director, Israela Brill-Cass, is a C2C Community Leader and Champion Volunteer and appears in the video. C2C is a nonprofit organization that provides essentials to children living in low-income or homeless situations across Massachusetts (www.cradlestocrayons.org).
BLC Receives “Best Law Firm” Ranking
On September 15, 2010, U.S. News & World Report, the leading rankings publication in the United States, partnered with Best Lawyers to name BLC a “Best Law Firm” in the country for Alternative Dispute Resolution and Family Law Mediation. The inaugural issue includes 30,322 rankings of 8,782 law firms in 81 practice areas across the country. BLC is recognized as a Tier 1 law firm for both ADR and Family Law Mediation. Rankings are posted online at www.usnews.com/bestlawfirms and the national first-tier rankings will be featured in the October print issue of U.S.News & World Report, which will go on sale September 27. U.S. News & World Report’s press release is available here.
BLC Welcomes New Affiliate
We are pleased to announce that Katherine Triantafillou, Esq., will be joining BLC as an Affiliate on March 1, 2011. Katherine is a family law, probate, general litigation, and civil rights attorney and mediator. A graduate of Suffolk Law School, the University of Michigan and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, she was the co-founder and first co-chair of the National Lesbian and Gay Law Association and the Massachusetts Lesbian and Gay Bar Association. Katherine is a former Cambridge City Council member, and was previously chair of the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Section of Individual Rights and Responsibilities and a member of the MBA’s Family Law Section Council. She has taught law at Northeastern and Suffolk University, and she is the co-author of the Massachusetts Abuse Prevention Act (ch. 209A). She is also the editor of the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education reference book, Representing Nontraditional Families.
BLC Member Teaches Collaborative Law
On March 21, 2011, BLC Member Rachel Goldman taught about Collaborative Law in the Negotiation course at New England School of Law in Boston.
BLC Attorney Speaks on Custody and Parenting Plans
On March 29, 2011, BLC Attorney Vicki Shemin spoke at the fourth session of The Divorce Center's five part seminar series on "Divorce in Massachusetts." She spoke at the Needham session on the topic of, "What is Custody and how do I make a Parenting Plan?"
BLC Members Teach at CDSC's Advanced Divorce Mediation Training
BLC Attorneys Participated in Suffolk University Law School Panel
On April 13, 2011, BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass and Member Rachel Goldman participated in a panel at Suffolk University Law School presented by the Career Development Office and the student-run ADR Association. The program involved a discussion of ADR and Collaborative Law and provided insight for students on how to embark on career paths in these fields.
BLC Member Speaks in Plenary Session on Mediation
On April 14, 2011, BLC Member David Hoffman was one of four speakers in a plenary session on “The Mediation Post Mortem: A Model for Enhancing Mediation Learning and Practice” at the annual conference of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution in Denver, Colorado. The other speakers included Michael Lewis, James Lawrence, and Irma Tyler-Wood.
BLC Member Teaches About Mediation and Collaborative Law
On April 14, 2011, BLC Member Rachel Goldman taught about the attorney’s role in Mediation and Collaborative Law in the Mediation course at New England Law Boston.
BLC Executive Director Appointed to Trial Court’s Standing Committee on Dispute Resolution
On March 15, 2011, BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass became a member of the Administrative Office of the Trial Court (AOTC)’s Standing Committee on Dispute Resolution. The Committee is comprised of judges, court personnel and attorneys, and is responsible for the implementation and oversight the Trial Court's Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) programs. The Standing Committee is undertaking a number of new initiatives including early intervention of ADR in the courts.
BLC Member Speaks on Conflict Resolution at Congregation Kerem Shalom
On March 13, 2011, BLC Member David Hoffman gave a talk on “Bringing Peace into the Room: Conflict Resolution as a Form of Spiritual Practice” at Congregation Kerem Shalom, 659 Elm Street, Concord, Massachusetts.
BLC Executive Director Participates in Suffolk University Law School Panel
On March 9, 2011, BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass participated on a panel at Suffolk University Law School as part of the Career Insight Series. The program was moderated by Professor Charles Kindregan and included public and private practitioners talking with students about their professional experiences, as well as providing information about opportunities available in family law and what they can/should do if they are interested in pursuing a career in the field. The program was co-sponsored by The Rappaport Center for Law and Public Service and Suffolk University Law School’s Career Development Office.
BLC Member Provides Mediation Training for ADR Section of the New Hampshire Bar Association
On March 9, 2011, BLC Member David Hoffman provided a continuing legal education training for the Alternative Dispute Resolution Section of the New Hampshire Bar Association on "The Negotiation Within: How Mediators Can Manage Their Competing Internal Voices and Help their Clients Do It Too."
BLC Member Speaks at The Divorce Center's Seminar Series
On March 8, 2011, BLC Member Rachel Goldman spoke at the first session of The Divorce Center's five part seminar series on "Divorce in Massachusetts." She spoke at the Needham session and the topic was, "What is the process and where do I start?"
BLC Provides Advanced Family Law Mediation Training for ABA
On March 4-6, 2011, BLC offered an Advanced Family Law Mediation Training for the American Bar Association Section of Family Law at BLC’s offices. BLC team members David Hoffman, Israela Brill-Cass, Nicole DiPentima, Rachel Goldman, Don Greenstein, Vicki Shemin, and Dr. Richard Wolman led the training, along with Harvard Medical School psychiatrist Dr. Ranna Parekh.
BLC Member Presents on Divorce Planning at the Raskin Financial Planning Group
On March 2, 2011, BLC Member Rachel Goldman gave a presentation at the Raskin Financial Planning Group in Boston, entitled “Love and Money: The Changing Landscape of Divorce Planning”.
BLC Member Participates in ABA Panel Discussion
On February 19, 2011, BLC Member Rachel Goldman participated in a panel discussion at the American Bar Association First Circuit Student Division’s Spring Conference at Harvard Law School. The panel topic was “Legal Rebels: Non Traditional Legal Career Options”.
BLC Executive Director Presents at Northeastern University Law School
On February 10, 2011, BLC’s Executive Director Israela Brill-Cass presented at an educational forum on ADR sponsored by the International Alternative Dispute Resolution Society at Northeastern University School of Law.
BLC Presents at IACP Annual Forum
On October 31, 2010, BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman and BLC Member David Hoffman presented a workshop entitled, “The Negotiation Within: How Collaborative Professionals Can Manage Their Competing Internal Voices and Help Their Clients Do It Too” at the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals annual Forum in Washington, D.C.
BLC Member Judges ABA Law Student Negotiation Competition
On November 13, 2010, BLC Member Rachel Goldman served as a judge at the American Bar Association Law Student Negotiation Competition at Harvard Law School.
BLC Team Presents at MCLE "ADR and the Law" Conference
On November 29, 2010, BLC’s, Israela Brill-Cass co-chaired the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education’s second Annual “ADR and the Law” Conference (along with Jack Wofford). BLC attorneys Rachel Goldman and Vicki Shemin presented workshops at the Conference.
Collaborative Law Training
On September 24-26, 2010, BLC Member, Rachel Goldman, served as a trainer for the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council’s three-day training entitled, “Collaborative Practice Interdisciplinary Training: A Step-by-Step Approach to Conflict Resolution.”
Bias at Work
On October 1, 2010, BLC Attorney Vicki Shemin moderated a panel entitled, "Bias at Work - Perspectives from the Bench, in Professional Training, and in Specialty Areas of Evaluation" at the annual conference of the Massachusetts Association of Guardians ad Litem.
Talking to Clients
On October 13, 2010, BLC Member, Rachel Goldman and Gina Arons, Ph.D., gave a talk at the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council Northern Massachusetts Collaborative Law Practice Group on the subject of “How to Talk to Clients about Collaborative Law” in Andover.
ABA Point/Counter-Point on Mediation Caucusing
On September 14, 2010, an American Bar Association continuing legal education teleseminar entitled “Point/Counterpoint on Mediation Caucusing” featured Harvard Law School Professor Robert Mnookin and BLC’s Member David Hoffman. The seminar materials included an article co-authored by David and BLC intern Lily Hoffman-Andrews. Click here for a copy of the article.
Op-Ed on Divorce in Christian Science Monitor
BLC Member David Hoffman published an op-ed piece on divorce negotiations in the Christian Science Monitor. The article, “Divorce is costly – The settlement need not be,” appeared on July 30, 2010. Click here for a copy of the article.
Collaborative Lawyer and Mediator Rachel Goldman Joins BLC
On July 1, 2010, attorney Rachel Goldman joined the BLC team as a Member of the firm. Rachel brings to BLC her extensive family law experience and is a leader in the collaborative law community. She has served on the Board of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council since 2005 and is a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation and the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals. She contributed to the designing and is on the faculty of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council’s Three-Day Interdisciplinary Training and is also part of the faculty of the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education Divorce Mediation Training. Rachel is an honors graduate of Macalester College and Suffolk University Law School, where she was editor-in-chief of the Law Review.
BLC Member Named in "Best Lawyers in America"
BLC Member David Hoffman was selected for the seventh consecutive year for the book The Best Lawyers in America – he is listed in three categories: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Collaborative Family Law, and Family Mediation. David’s name will be included among Boston’s Best Lawyers in a special magazine distributed with the June 20, 2010 Boston Globe.
BLC Wins Law Firm ADR Award
On January 13, 2010, the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (“CPR”) presented its Law Firm Award for Excellence in ADR at the organization’s annual meeting in New York. CPR is one of the leading organizations in the world promoting the use of alternative dispute resolution.
Spirituality and the Meaning of Work
On April 29, 2010, BLC Affiliate Dr. Richard Wolman led a workshop at BLC on “Spirituality and the Meaning of Work,” exploring our relationship to work and its meaning. Richard is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and the author of the book Thinking With Your Soul: Spiritual Intelligence and Why It Matters(2001).
Organizational Ombuds 101
On April 20, 2010, BLC hosted a Brown Bag Lunch on “Organizational Ombuds 101: How the Use of an Ombudsperson Enhances the Culture of an Organization.” Several experienced ombudspeople – Melissa Brodrick (Harvard Medical School), Lydia Cummings (Harvard University), and Mary Rowe (MIT) – joined us for this informal discussion. BLC Affiliate Don Greenstein facilitated the discussion.
On April 19, 2010, BLC member David Hoffman ran in the Boston Marathon to support one of BLC’s favorite charities, Greater Boston Food Bank.
Workshop on Mediation Caucusing
On April 8, 2010, BLC Paralegal and ADR Case Manager Nicole DiPentima and BLC Member David Hoffman co-presented a workshop on mediation caucusing at the annual Conference of the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution, held this year in San Francisco.
The Negotiation Within
Bargaining with the Devil
On February 4, 2010, David Hoffman was one of the speakers at a Reception at Harvard Law School – along with Dean Martha Minow, Prof. Robert Mnookin, Prof. Gabriella Blum, and Margot Strom -- honoring Prof. Mnookin on the publication of his new book, “Bargaining with the Devil.” For a link to the video of this event, click here.
To Caucus or Not to Caucus: It’s Complicated
On February 3, 2010, BLC lawyers Vicki Shemin and David Hoffman presented a workshop on mediation caucusing for the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation, entitled “To Caucus or Not to Caucus: It’s Complicated.”
Exploring the Crossroads of Diversity and Spirituality
On January 22, 2010, BLC’s David Hoffman presented a workshop in San Francisco on “Exploring the Crossroads of Diversity and Spirituality.” Daniel Bowling, Homer LaRue, and Marvin Johnson presented with David. Click here for information about this event.
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