President’s Message | March 2019

Greetings Mediation Community in New Mexico!!

I trust all your Dispute Resolutions have been interesting and afforded you and your clients to reach resolution that is meaningful and positive.

It’s been a busy 45 days for your Association Board as we wade through issues and opportunities of which I will share with you this month.  In no particular order:

  1.  The website now has the capability to accept Stripe payments seamlessly.  This proved to be much more a tedious task but it is now ready to accept payments through the website.  Check it out as well as the new look of the site if you have not done so!
  2. For over a year, I have committed myself to create an Online member directory.  We have agreed to go forward on the directory and maintain security of our site for our members.  We are beta testing data entry utilizing Board Member profiles as we speak.  We hope to be able to request data from members who wish to be listed on the site page within 30 days.  We have discussed a secure site for our paid members that contains more detail data than what would be found on the “Search for a Mediator” page that the General public searching for a mediator would/could access.  I hope to have more on this within 30 days – our goal is to ask for the specific data to be include on the public page first.
  3. Board Meetings are being held face to face in Albuquerque for 2019.  In 2018 we tried to hold monthly Conference Call/Video calls and struggled to reach quorum numbers to vote and make decisions.  Since Maggie Reynolds and I are the “Outside Albuquerque” board members we decided – we will go to ABQ and meet face to face.  I hope you will join us at these board meetings.  Our next Board Meeting is scheduled May 9 at 6:00 p.m. at Mimi’s on the I-25 South frontage road.  JOIN US!!!
  4. Open Board Seat – We currently have an Open board seat and a Vice President seat on the Board.  The board has asked that if anyone of the general membership has an interest in the Open seat(s) and is willing to serve until the next general election, please email or call ElenaMaria Hernandez at 505.688.2046 or  Board members must be willing to attend all board meetings and be willing to chair a committee to continue to promote the association goals and objectives.  Please let ElenaMaria know, the board would then like to schedule an interview before deciding.
  5. Board and Officers Liability Insurance was discussed at the annual meeting.  It has been researched and decided that we will not purchase this as cost and  recommendations by insurers are that this is not needed given the low annual income and liability risk to this association board in New Mexico.
  6. In the course of regular audit and review of the organization Policy, Procedures and Financial instruments it was learned that the Association had not submitted the proper Federal Income tax forms to IRS since 2009 and our 501(c) 6 nonprofit standing had been revoked since 2009.  No panic necessary, I have been working with a Pro-Bono Attorney specializing in this area and a CPA spouse (it’s great to have friends in low places!) to correct this deficiency and share with the board what will be submitted to the IRS to regain the status for final board submission approval.

This is YOUR Association as well as mine; I hope you will continue to support us as we continue to move forward to create a vibrant, active, informed and committed association. 

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please let me know.

All the Best and until next time ……..

Roundtable Discussion in Las Cruces (3/22)

Please join the ADR Bureau for a roundtable discussion with representatives from the state Risk Management Division.

Bring questions and ideas on how we can work better to serve you! 

This is a great opportunity to meet your GSD Risk Management team and to network with others from our universities, state agencies, the courts, and partnering organizations in the southern part of the state.

DATE:             Friday, March 22, 2019

TIME:              8:30 am – 11:30 am

WHERE:         New Mexico State University (NMSU)

Academic Research Complex, Building C, Room #110

1620 Standley Drive

Las Cruces, NM 88003

Click Here for University Map

Click Here for NMSU Parking Map

Click Here for NMSU Visitor Parking Pass

Please RSVP by Clicking Here

*New* Job Opening: Mediation Coordinator

The NM ADR Bureau is excited to share a job posting for those passionate about workplace conflict resolution.

Job Title Mediation Coordinator (GSD #10101905)
Job ID 104905
Location Santa Fe
Posting End Date 03/21/2019
Agency General Services Department
Full/Part Time Full-Time
Regular/Temporary Regular – PERM for State
Job Posting Type Standard Requisition


Click Here to Apply for Mediation Coordinator (GSD #10101905)

Apply now for Family Mediation Scholarships by Feb. 8th!

The Rozier E. Sanchez Judicial Education Center Mediation Scholarship

The New Mexico Supreme Court’s Statewide ADR Commission encourages all New Mexico court judges and staff to apply for a Rozier E. Sanchez Judicial Education Center (JEC) Scholarship to complete a 40-hour Family Mediation Course at the UNM School of Law (SOL) in Albuquerque.  The JEC Scholarships are administered by the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), in conjunction with the Statewide ADR Commission.   Full tuition scholarships will be awarded for up to two (2) recipients to attend the Spring Family Mediation Course.  Tuition includes course registration, materials, and a parking permit.  A flat rate reimbursement is also available for scholarship recipients traveling more than 60 miles one-way to attend the course.

NOTE:  The Basic Mediation Course is a prerequisite for the Family Mediation Course

Recipients must fully attend ALL sessions of the course, as follows: 

Friday              03/22/19                      1:30pm to 6:30pm

Saturday          03/23/19                      8:30am to 6:30pm

Sunday            03/24/19                      8:30am to 2:30pm

Friday              03/29/19                      1:30pm to 6:30pm

Saturday          03/30/19                      8:30am to 6:30pm

Sunday            03/31/19                      8:30am to 2:30pm


Applications are due on or before February 8, 2019 by 5:00PM.


Letter from the NMMA President

Greetings and Happy New Year!!

“I suggest that the rumors of the death of mediation and the significant role of the traditional process mediator are greatly exaggerated” …………

This quote from an article I recently read written by Greg Rooney, an Australian, for Mediate Dot Com has me really thinking of this whole “Professional, Certified Non-Attorney Mediator vs. Lawyer” discussion of Mediation.

According to Mr. Rooney, we now live in a time where a world of connectivity and fluidity has replaced the 20th century Newtonian concepts that are linear, predictable and deterministic. We live in a world driven by the rise of the World Wide Web. We now have transparent and open data networks that are available free of charge to anyone with an Internet connection.

The biggest upheaval, according to Mr. Rooney has been the rise in the commercial value of trust over that of competitive and adversarial behaviors. The “sharing” economy relies on the willingness of users to be trustworthy and to trust each other. It is therefore essential that any conflict be dealt with in a way that preserves those trusting relationships while allowing new learnings which are an essential springboard for innovation and evolutionary breakthroughs.

We therefore require a new world order of thinking and operating in how we solve conflict. Mediators go off into the world and engage with parties at a very human level much the same as it was done in the 1980’s. They work with the uncertainties of conflict and hopefully come up with a “good enough” resolution. Rooney states, “These soft skills are now in high demand in the commercial world”.

It has left the legal profession with an identity crisis as they try to fit into this new reality. Since the 80’s the legal profession has moved from being a trusted profession based on the application of scale costs, which moderated the professions financial self-interest, to a commercial business model built on time costing to maximize dollar return through promoting (litigation finance) and extending disputes by means of adversarial culture according to Mr. Rooney. The problem, according to Mr. Rooney, is not so much the high legal fees, it is the pursuit of an adversarial approach to drive those extra fees. This keeps the clients stuck in their “conflict zone” far longer than is commercially acceptable or necessary. This has turned out to be a huge self-inflicted wound.

In response to the challenge presented by this new world order of collaboration, the legal profession has sought to rebrand itself to try and recover commercial relevance. The legal profession has sought to rebadge itself by dumping the designation “litigators” and replacing it with “Dispute Resolvers” now with lofty ideals according to Mr. Rooney. Mr. Rooney found it ironic that the long-term criticism of traditional mediation by the legal profession has been that it is to “touch-feely” and into “healing, wholeness, harmony and optimal human functioning” the very thing this the legal profession is trying to champion “Dispute Resolvers” as.

I am not sure the commercial world is buying this makeover, particularly when it is built on an adversarial solution focused culture and training that is not in harmony with modern economic drivers. I read where during the recent Global Pound Conference it was recommended that “It will be necessary to use research to ensure that if evaluative mediation becomes the norm approach, as well it should, that quality-control and ethical frameworks exist to prevent rogue Attorney mediators from making de facto determinations.”

Mr. Rooney suggests that the traditional non-evaluative “process” approach to mediation is far more in tune with the modern collaborative economy. It is an experiential approach which gives the parties time and space to step back and allow patterns to emerge. The mediators use their senses and respond to those patterns. This creates the potential for new opportunities to emerge out of the interaction that can lead to innovation and creativity. It can help repair disrupted trust which is the central foundation of the modern economy and world order. It is mediating for the emergence of the new rather than providing an “evaluation” of the parties’ respective positions in order to find an upper hand and close the gap for litigation finance.

Tomorrow we will all go off and continue the traditional process where we will try to remain present in the moment to observe the dynamics of human interaction between the parties. We will probe first and then sense and respond to the reaction and we will try to suspend attachment to memories, desires and the need to understand what is happening and will try and not be deterred by blockages and impasses. We will allow our intuition to guide us through the session rather than let the mechanical side of our brain be our master.

Mr. Rooney closes his article by suggesting to the legal community in general and the “dispute resolvers” that the answer to restoring the “value” for the legal product in the new economy is not to push aside or try to diminish the traditional mediation movement but to embrace it and welcome it as a path to acquire the necessary “soft skills” to constructively engage with the fluidity, ambiguity and complexity of the new age not necessarily taught or coached in law school.

Yes, it is true ….. The rumors of the death of mediation and the significant role of the traditional process mediator aka Professional, Certified Non-Attorney Mediators are GREATLY exaggerated!!!!

Until the next time …………..Ted Ramirez, NMMA President