Saint Louis University

Mastering the Art of Mediation Advocacy


Thomas BlumenthalThomas Blumenthal
Association of Attorney Mediators
Attorney, Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C. 

Tom Blumenthal is a principal at Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C., in St. Louis, Missouri, and has been practicing law, concentrating in commercial and constitutional litigation since 1976. He has been serving as a neutral in mediation and arbitration since 1995. From 2006 through 2010, Tom created the curriculum and taught Arbitration Theory and Practice at Washington University School of Law, and previously has spoken on mediation and arbitration issues in seminars for the American Arbitration Association, the Association of Attorney Mediators and local continuing education seminars. He is a member of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals and was the 2012 St. Louis Arbitrator of the Year as designated by Best Lawyers in America. Since 2007 he has been named by Best Lawyers in America in the category of Alternate Dispute Resolution. He mediates complex business, commercial, construction, employment and intellectual property cases, including in multi-party mediations.

Joan BurgerJoan Burger
Association of Attorney Mediators

Joan M. Burger was born and raised in Chicago. She graduated from Loyola University in Chicago (B.S. 1966) and St. Louis University (J.D. 1976 cum laude). She served as Legal Officer for the St. Louis Juvenile Court and as Assistant Circuit Attorney for the City of St. Louis, then was in private practice from 1980-1994; Hearing officer for the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners 1980-1994.

Her professional organizations include: Past president of the Women Lawyers Association of St. Louis; Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, National Association of Women Judges; Women Lawyers Association, and the Missouri Bar Association.

Her community activities include: Member of Board of Directors, Monsanto YMCA for ten years; Board of Directors of the National Association of Women Business Owners, Board of Directors of St. Louis Forum; United Way Admissions Committee and Venture Grant Committee.

She was appointed a circuit judge in November1994 and she served as a circuit judge in the city of St. Louis from 1995 until 2008. She was the presiding judge of the St Louis Drug Court for two years.

She currently is a mediator and arbitrator for US Arbitration and Mediation-Midwest. In 2011, Governor Nixon appointed her Chairman of the St. Louis Board of Elections, where she continues to serve as Chairman. 

Jerome DiekemperJerome Diekemper
Jerome A. Diekemper, LLC

Jerry Diekemper, a licensed attorney in the State of Missouri since 1972, now focuses his work on alternative dispute resolution, especially mediation and arbitration. He also provides services as an independent investigator and expert witness. For the first thirty-four years of his practice he concentrated his practice on labor and employment law, representing unions and individual employees. In 1993, he conducted his first mediation. Since then he has been selected by parties in over 1300 disputes to serve as mediator. In June, 2006, Jerty fanned Jerome A Diekemper, LLC to concentrate on mediation and arbitration. Jerry has been included in the first and every subsequent edition of the Best Lawyers in America. In the 2011 edition, he was named Lawyer of the Year for Labor and Employment in St. Louis. In the 2013 edition, he was named Lawyer of the Year for Arbitration in St. Louis. In the November 2006 and 2007 Editions of Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers, Jerry was included in the Top 100 list of Missouri-Kansas lawyers and the Top 50 list of St. Louis lawyers. Jerry is a Fellow in the Labor and Employment Lawyers and an Advanced Workplace Practitioner in the Association of Conflict Resolution.

Susan FitzgibbonSusan Fitzgibbon
Professor of Law/Moderator
SLU Center for Employment Law

A specialist in employment law, arbitration and mediation, Professor Susan A. FitzGibbon concentrates her research on alternative dispute resolution. An arbitrator and mediator, Prof. FitzGibbon has been exploring this topic for more than a decade. Her scholarship includes articles on arbitrating employment claims, arbitration and mediation of sexual harassment claims, and court-annexed mediation programs.

Professor FitzGibbon serves on the Executive Board of the Labor and Employment Relations Association-Gateway Chapter (LERA). She is as a member of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee of U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. Professor FitzGibbon is also a member and past-Chairperson of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis (BAMSL) and is a member and past-chairperson of the BAMSL Women in the Legal Profession Committee. 

Leonard FrankelLeonard Frankel
Frankel, Rubin, Bond, Dubin, Siegel & Klein, P.C.

In addition to his trial practice, Leonard Frankel's areas of expertise include mediation, arbitration, collaborative law, and service as a special master and parent coordinator. He has conducted approximately 500 mediations.

A 1965 graduate of the Washington University School of Law, Frankel is also an adjunct professor at the Washington University School of Law. Frankel lectures on mediation and has served on the university's mediation training faculty. He also serves on the Advisory Committee for the U.S. District Court on mediation. He is a member of the Association of Attorney-Mediators and the Association of Missouri Mediators. Frankel's mediation experience includes employment law, personal injury, contract law, statutory remedies, and family law. He co-authored "Why Cases Settle, Why Cases Don't Settle," which appeared in the St. Louis Bar Journal in Winter 2005 and authored "Presuit Mediation - A Missed Opportunity?" published in the St. Louis Bar Journal in Summer 2012.

Frankel is also listed in The Best Lawyers in America for his expertise in mediation and family law mediation. The publication named him St. Louis Family Law Mediator for 2012 and St. Louis Mediator of the year for 2013. He has been selected to Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers and named a Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyer by Law & Politics magazine. 

Rebecca MagruderRebecca Magruder
Rebecca T. Magruder, M.S.W., J.D.

Rebecca T. Magruder, M.S.W., J.D. is a sole practitioner who focuses her private practice on mediation, collaborative law, and other non-adversarial methods for resolving family and workplace disputes. Since opening her private practice in 1997, Rebecca has mediated more than 1,600 disputes. Rebecca is an Advanced Practitioner member of the Family Section of the Association for Conflict Resolution. Rebecca trains and mentors new mediators; presents advanced workshops on conflict resolution, mediation, and collaborative practice to professional and corporate organizations; and serves as an adjunct assistant professor at St. Louis University School of Law where she has directed the mediation clinic since 2000. Ms. Magruder has been listed in Best Lawyers in America since 2007 under the areas of family law mediation and collaborative family law.

Mitch MargoMitch Margo
Association of Attorney Mediators
Principal Attorney, Curtis, Heinz, Garrett & O'Keefe, P.C.  

Mr. Margo is a principal in the St. Louis law firm of Curtis, Heinz, Garrett & O'Keefe, PC. He concentrates his practice on Business Disputes; Trust and Estate Litigation, Sports Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution. He has served equally often as plaintiff's counsel and defendant's counsel. Prior to joining Curtis, Heinz, Mr. Margo was a Principal at Green, Schaaf & Margo, PC and began his legal career at Guilfoil, Petzall & Shoemake, PC. In the last five years Mr. Margo has served as a mediator and arbitrator in a wide range of legal disputes and continues his law practice as an advocate in both mediations and arbitrations as well.

Mr. Margo served on the St. Louis County Civil Service Commission from 2000 to 2012 and was its Chairman from 2007 until 2012; Mr. Margo was the founding President of Washington University's athletic alumni association, and he was elected into the WU Sports Hall of Fame in 2004 for his career as a varsity baseball player from 1974-77; He was the Articles Editor of the Washington University Law Review (formerly the Law Quarterly) in 1982-83; From 1994 to 2008, Mr. Margo wrote a monthly syndicated column on legal issues called Under Analysis. Mr. Margo also served on the City of Clayton's Planning and Zoning Commission and Architectural Review Board.

Education: USA&M Advanced Mediator Training 2013; Association of Attorney Mediators 2010 to present; American Arbitration Association certification, 2005; Federal Court Neutral, 2005; Washington University School of Law (J.D.), 1983; University of Michigan (M.A. Journalism) 1979; Washington University (B.A.) 1977.

Affiliations: Missouri State Courts; U.S. District Court; U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit; United States Supreme Court. 

Carol NeedhamCarol Needham
Professor of Law, St. Louis University School of Law

Carol Needham has written and spoken extensively on several issues - primarily under the umbrella of legal ethics and professional responsibility. Presently, her scholarship centers on the ethics issues faced by in house counsel and lawyers in transactional practice, cross-border practice and professional licensing issues, including the multijurisdictional practice of law. She is co-author of the upcoming fourth edition of the ethics textbook, Lawyers and the Legal Profession. She is including material on conflicts of interest, malpractice, confidentiality, foreign legal advisers, issues facing lawyers in transactional practice and in-house counsel, the glass ceiling and work life balance, multijurisdictional practice and the unauthorized practice of law.

Professor Needham graduated from Northwestern University School of Law in 1985 and clerked for Chief Judge Harold M. Fong of the U.S. District Court in Honolulu. She practiced with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Los Angeles where, among other things, she negotiated and documented loan workouts, mergers, IPOs, private placements and acquisitions, and participated in commercial litigation. In 1990, she joined Chadbourne & Parke, where she negotiated and documented employment contracts, licensing agreements, power plant construction and operation agreements and project financing documents. 

Frank NeunerFrank Neuner
Spencer Fane Britt & Browne LLP

An experienced employment attorney and commercial litigator, Frank now devotes a substantial portion of his practice to mediating workplace conflicts and business-related disputes. In addition to private mediations, Frank serves as a mediator for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Missouri Commission on Human Rights. Over the course of his career, Frank has represented the various participants in employment disputes—including businesses, managers, and individual employees—and therefore he is uniquely qualified to lead parties toward resolution of these conflicts. Frank received Mediation Skills Training at Northwestern University School of Continuing Studies. Frank also completed an Advanced Mediation Skills course administered by the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine School of Law. Frank is approved as a Certified Neutral by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. He is a national member of the Association of Attorney-Mediators and presently serves as Vice President of the St. Louis chapter. Frank authors a blog, called “Optimal Resolution,” that focuses on the resolution of workplace and other conflicts through alternatives to litigation.

Brendan Ryan
Association of Attorney Mediators

Judge Ryan has served a total of 21 years on the St. Louis Circuit court. Since leaving the bench in 1999, he has mediated over 2400 cases. Judge Ryan has been the recipient of the University of Missouri Columbia Alumni Medal of Honor Award, the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys Award for the Administration of Justice and the National Conference of Metropolitan Courts awarded him the Justice Thomas C. Clark Award in 1996. On October 4, 2002, he received the R. Walsten Chubb Award from the Legal Services of Eastern Missouri. Listed among the Best Lawyers in America® in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 for Alternative Dispute Resolution. In 1979, he was appointed Judge of the Circuit Court and won retention in 1980, 1986, 1992 and 1998. From 1987 to 1988, he was City of St. Louis

Richard Sher
Sher Corwin Winters, LLC

Richard P. Sher is a founding member of the St. Louis law firm of Sher Corwin Winters, LLC, where he maintains a broad practice in civil trial matters and alternative dispute resolution. Mr. Sher has handled and tried cases across the country for a wide spectrum of clients, ranging from publicly held companies and government agencies to small businesses and individuals. Mr. Sher regularly serves as a neutral and represents clients in mediation and other alternative dispute resolution processes. He has served as mediator in over 1,800 cases and as arbitrator in 100-150 cases. Mr. Sher has been included in Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers for several years. In 2011, he was named St. Louis Best Lawyer of the Year, Alternative Dispute Resolution. Mr. Sher is a frequent writer and lecturer on litigation issues and alternative dispute resolution.

Ronald WiesenthalRonald Wiesenthal
Association of Attorney Mediators
Mediator, St. Louis Mediation Center, LLC. 

Ron Wiesenthal is a full-time mediator and the owner of the St. Louis Mediation Center. He is a Director and Treasurer of AAM. He is also a member of the National Association of Distinguished Neutrals, an invitation only organization of arbitrators and mediators as well as the Co-chair of the ADR committee of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. Wiesenthal is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin (1969) and the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law (1972). He has been a mediator since 1991 and has mediated well over 1000 cases.