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  • GROUP FACILITATION & MEDIATION: “We just need a good attorney who knows all about this stuff to mediate for us.” NO YOU DON’T! GROUP FACILITATION & MEDIATION: “We just need a good attorney who knows all about this stuff to mediate for us.” NO YOU DON’T!

    GROUP FACILITATION & MEDIATION: “We just need a good attorney who knows all about this stuff to mediate for us.” NO YOU DON’T!

GROUP FACILITATION & MEDIATION: “We just need a good attorney who knows all about this stuff to mediate for us.” NO YOU DON’T!

A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by an attorney for a party to a conflict involving land and water issues. She had been referred to me by a husband and wife who were long-time colleagues of mine. He is an environmental and public policy attorney and had seen me in action on more than one complex environmental case and was obviously impressed with my skills as a Group Facilitator and Mediator. She is a former volunteer mediator with Jefferson County Mediation Services (I am the Executive Director of this community mediation program) and has worked with me on conflict resolution trainings in schools. So, they were a reliable referral source for the attorney who contacted me about being the mediator for her case. Furthermore, she had already visited by website, www.mediationworks2.com and was satisfied with my nearly 30 years of experience in this field. At the end of our conversation, she told me she was going to contact the other two sides to the conflict (one of which was a municipal government) and ask for their approval for me to be their mediator. Since this conflict was right in my professional wheelhouse, I was understandably excited by the prospect of mediating this case.

A few days later, she contacted me again to tell me that the other two sides to the conflict had rejected me as the mediator because they needed a “good water attorney” to mediate the case, and she could not move them from that position. She said she was sorry things had turned out this way and hoped to use my services in the future. I hope she will have occasion to do so.

This little story speaks volumes about […]

By |February 28th, 2016|Group Facilitation Denver|Comments Off on GROUP FACILITATION & MEDIATION: “We just need a good attorney who knows all about this stuff to mediate for us.” NO YOU DON’T!

How a Regulator became a Mediator and Facilitator – And Why It’s Better!

In 1979, I was hired, fresh out of graduate school with an MS degree in Systems Ecology, by the Mined Land Reclamation Division of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources. I was a “Reclamation Specialist”. Over the next eight years, I advanced to the level of a “Senior Reclamation Specialist” in charge of a small staff of other similar professionals who oversaw the permitting and regulation of all of the known non-coal mines in the south half of Colorado. I reported to a chain of command that included a Division Director and a Mined Land Reclamation Board (as appointed by the Governor), which had a public meeting on a monthly basis. My duties included supervision of my staff of three specialists who reviewed reclamation permit applications from mining companies; visited mines in the field to check for compliance with their permit requirements, finding unpermitted mining operations and consulting with miners on the best way to comply with their permits and making presentations to the monthly meetings of the Board, whose members had to rule on all of our activities. I not only supervised these activities, I engaged in all of them myself. We were always busy. In short, I was an environmental regulator.

In the culture in which I worked, the “regulator’s regulator” was someone who was diligent in finding those who did not comply with the detailed regulations (whether by total non-compliance – mining without a permit – or by falling short of the standards defined by regulation and their permit) and making sure the miscreants were found, cited, fined and perhaps even closed down under a cease and desist order issued by the Board. Suffice to say that regulators who lived strictly by […]

By |December 6th, 2015|Group Facilitation Denver, Mediation|Comments Off on How a Regulator became a Mediator and Facilitator – And Why It’s Better!