A Main Street Lawyer and Well-Respected Mediator

In describing my practice, I tend to call myself a main street lawyer. That means I'm a small-town lawyer with big experience. Since 1973 I've been part of the Sebastopol and Sonoma County communities and have  gone from fostering discussions about the environment and the Russian River to developing a popular mediation program at the Sonoma County Superior Court. I'm proud to take a leadership role in thegw California mediation community but am committed to my roots as a hometown lawyer, ready to help people as their family attorney.

My path to becoming a lawyer was unique. I am one of the few California attorneys who qualified for the bar exam by reading the law rather than attending law school. In my early years as an attorney I was struck by watching individuals of modest means face massive legal bills and a litigation system that supported drawn-out battles, effectively exacerbating problems rather than solving them. After these experiences I continued to diverge from the legal tradition and committed myself to mediation. I turned to mediation as a way to help people make good decisions and find creative, cost-effective solutions.

My Leadership Roles In The California Mediation Community

In order to convey the benefits of mediation, I took a leadership role in the Sonoma County Bar Association's early effort to encourage mediation at the local court level. That role allowed me to implement and run the Office of Alternative Dispute Resolution in Sonoma County's Superior Court for nearly five years where I watched the practice grow in popularity.

I then became the Mediation Program Administrator at the California Court of Appeal in San Francisco. There I handled mediation appeals cases involving significant assets and publicized disputes including an attorney fee appeal involving a trust dispute between a large financial institution and a Washington, D.C. trust attorney and a $1 billion lawsuit involving Chevron Oil Refinery.

At that time, I also took on a leadership role with the American Bar Association's Section on Dispute Resolution and spearheaded an effort to create a mediation research task force. As chair of the task force, I have lectured extensively on the benefits of using empirical research to improve mediation techniques, including a public lecture regarding my widely received paper "A Call for Evidence Based Research on Mediation Quality" in Melbourne, Australia.

Returning To My Roots: Sonoma County

I've since rediscovered my roots in Sonoma County as a lawyer, mediator and community member. Upon returning, I have continued to expand my mediation practice: I have accepted a role as the only Northern California attorney on the California Association of Realtors and am working hard to help people bring personal injury cases to light, create estate plans, protect their businesses from legal issues and do much more through my general practice.

My experience ensures effective, professional negotiation assisance and my committment to community drives me to lend a helping hand. I'm an internationally recognized mediator and your hometown lawyer, ready to listen and give you a helping hand.

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Then, contact me via email or by calling 707-483-1816 to discuss your case. My law office, Gary Weiner Lawyer & Mediator, is located on Main Street in Sebastopol.