When The Mediation Group incorporated in 1985, it did so as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. This decision reflects the longstanding commitment to public service of the three founding principals. For the past 30 years, TMG has been committed to:
- Bringing dispute resolution processes and techniques -- mediation, arbitration, facilitation, collaborative problem solving -- to a wide range of fields;
- Improving the practice of ADR and the skills of practitioners, and
- Designing quality dispute resolution systems for courts, administrative agencies and private organizations.
The Mediation Group was hired, in partnership with what was then the Massachusetts Office of Dispute Resolution (now the Mass. Office of Public Collaboration), to provide the initial design and implementation of mediation programs for the Massachusetts Superior Courts in Suffolk and Norfolk Counties as well as at the Middlesex Multi-Door Courthouse. This long-term endeavor entailed the creation of the first mediation program used in the Massachusetts Superior Court, and served as the basis for later development of a robust model of court-based dispute resolution programs.
Much of The Mediation Group’s public service work has focused on supporting collaborative dispute resolution in health care. In 2001, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health formally recognized TMG’s “valuable contribution to the development of the Health Insurance Consumer Protection Regulations for the Office of Patient Protection.”
As a non-profit, TMG has been the recipient of several foundation grants to support public service projects.
- TMG received two grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop and implement a protocol to assess conflict in health care plans.
- TMG participated in a hospital-based training on disclosure of medical errors under a grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts.
- TMG facilitators worked with colleagues from the UMass Medical Center on a study funded by the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute to investigate the inclusion of patients’ perspectives in the development of clinical practice guidelines for controversial medical treatments.
The Mediation Group’s professionals regularly conduct trainings of mediators through the Community Dispute Settlement Center (CDSC) and Mass Continuing Legal Education, Inc. (MCLE) as well as speaking and conducting classes at law schools including Emerson, Harvard, Northeastern & Roger Williams. To further support the goal of high quality training for emerging mediation practitioners, TMG is launching a Fellowship program which will provide mentoring, coaching and a supervised mediation experience for a new mediator who will work closely with TMG over a one year period.
Mediation Fellowship program
In his experience as an educator one of TMG’s principals, David Matz, found that there was a gap in the professional mediator’s career ladder. Newcomers were finding it difficult to gain experience with significant mediation cases outside of small claims court. What the mediation field needs is a new, extensive training structure with in depth practice and supervision. Find a copy of David's article, "No Career Ladder for Mediators," here.
This need led to the development of the TMG Mediation Fellowship program. The program offers the upcoming generation of mediators the opportunity to build professional competence and gain experience with substantial mediation cases. Through the Fellowship program the new mediator is able observe a variety of mediations and arbitrations with senior TMG staff and develop his or her skills. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Our 2015 inaugural fellow was Hema Patel. She has since moved to New York where she is working as an attorney representing unaccompanied minors at Catholic Charities Communities Services. Our 2016 fellow, Amin Danai, is back working at Ropes and Gray in the corporate department and as part of their asset management team. We look forward to seeing him grow his mediation career. For the summer of 2017, we have Ruslan Mirzayev joining us as a fellow all the way from Azerbaijan. Ruslan hopes to learn the ins and outs of the mediation process so he can increase the use of mediation in his home country and open a firm of his own. In the fall of 2017 we will welcome Adriana Sanchez Correa to the fellowship program. We can't wait to see what she brings to the team.
In recent years, TMG has also been involved in efforts to promote the use of dispute resolution processes and techniques in a number of overseas locations including China, the Middle East, Nigeria and a January 2015 trip to Cuba – for more detail on our International projects, please click here.