A warm welcome to the Maryland Council for Dispute Resolution!

When we go for a check-up, the doctor taps our knee to make sure our reflexes are in good working order. Imagine the world if, at the first sign of conflict or disagreement, the automatic reflex were to reach for peace and understanding. Together we can make this vision a reality, one conflict at a time.

If you are an ADR practitioner, we want to support you as you expand your practice and your peace-making skills.  Our quarterly meetings and programs offer experienced and dynamic presenters and friendly networking opportunities.  We are involved in promoting mediation and ADR through outreach and legislative activities.  Our performance-based certification program is a national model.  I look forward to welcoming you at our meetings and getting to know your hopes and ideas for our field.

If you’re seeking mediation services, I invite you to look at the MCDR roster of professionals, and expand your options for an an outcome that meets your needs and reflects your values.          


 ~Donna Duquette, President 2013-2014


                                   MCDR Quarterly Meetings 


Quarterly Meeting will take place on

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 


All are welcome. Please join us!




Please join us at the upcoming meeting to delve deeply into the when, where, why, and how of the caucus.  If you never caucus, sometimes caucus, or always caucus, our panelists can enhance your mediation skills by answering questions you may have in this sometimes foggy area.  What are some of the benefits to caucusing?  What are some of the drawbacks?  And, if you decide caucuses are appropriate, when in the process are they most effective?  Do you caucus before the mediation session, sometime in the middle after you’ve determined some of the topics, or when it just feels right to do so?  What do you do in a caucus session?  Do you feel uncomfortable with your ability to convey to the other participant the feelings, values and information you hear during the caucus with one of the participants?  Do you convey the information you receive exactly as you hear it, or do you soften, screen, edit, spin, or censor the information?  What are your ethical obligations in this regard?  Do you get stressed about what one participant may be thinking and feeling while you caucus with the other participant?  How do you handle these feelings?


The presentation will delve into these questions and many more and will answer questions you may raise, as well.  The presentation will include unique views and experiences in mediated cases, including some practical tips and “tricks of the trade” that one can use during caucuses to insure success in moving the mediation to a successful conclusion.  


When:  Wednesday, March 26, 2014 – 6:30 (socializing); 7–9 p.m. (program)


Where:  Silver Spring Civic Center, 1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (tentative)

    Parking Garage – at the intersection of Fenton St. and Ellsworth Dr. (across the street from the Silver Spring Civic Center)


RSVP:  MCDR Quarterly Meetings are open to everyone.  There is no charge, and it is our pleasure to welcome newcomers to join us for an interesting evening of ADR education and networking.  If you would like to attend the program, please RSVP toerik@creativedisputeresolutions.com, so we can plan accordingly.



 MCDR Executive Board Meetings scheduled for 2014 :

                              Please join us all members are welcome to attend

  Wed, May 7th -7:00 – 9:00 pm
  Tues, August 5th -7:00 – 9:00 pm
  Wed, November 12th - 7:00 – 9:00 pm



                                          "MCDR AT WORK"     

Developing a dialogue on a crucial issue is what happened from 2012-2013 when representatives of the Maryland mediation community gathered every seven weeks to discuss issues of concern over competition between community and private mediation services. This dialogue concluded with a pilot project for the Montgomery County Conflict Resolution Center . The pilot project resulted in an agreement with all stakeholder groups to gather data, set up a referral system and limit certain types of cases for mediation by the local center.   More importantly it changed how various stakeholders saw each other and the issues and it is likely to impact statewide policy.   Donna Duquette , Bob Mueller and Ellen Kandell participated in the dialogue and Eileen Coen and Ellen Kandell participated in the pilot project discussions.  Several of us continue to be involved in the implementation phase of this important cutting edge innovation.


ADR Spring Event Flyer (revised) (031414).doc



The MCDR Certification Committee has been collaborating with the Talbot County Circuit Court to ensure mediator quality. Rob Ketcham, Chair of the Certification Committee, reports that the Talbot County Circuit Court project is entering its second phase.  On October 24, 2013 Judge Bo Earnest sent out a memo to Talbot County Roster Mediators which reads as follows: 

“ Talbot County ’s program of mandatory mediation in civil cases has now been in place for approximately six months.  I am happy to report that at this point we have a settlement rate of close to 50% for the non-domestic civil cases that have gone to mediation.  We are also having success with domestic cases.  These results are similar to, or better than, the settlement rates in counties that have had mediation in place for many years.

In January, 2013, twenty three of our roster mediators participated in the advanced training that we offered.  At this time, ten of our thirty seven roster mediators are certified through a performance based assessment, either by Community Mediation Maryland or the Maryland Council for Dispute Resolution (MCDR).

I believe that the quality assurance provided by certification is critical where the Court is requiring mandatory participation in mediation for all litigants.  Accordingly, in order to remain on the Talbot County Roster, all mediators will need to be certified by May 1, 2014.  To that end, the County will offer another certification training on January 27 and 28, 2014.  This advanced training will emphasize the mediator skills required to pass a performance-based assessment and will be free of charge.  Shortly after the training, representatives of MCDR will come to Easton to do mediator assessments.

Thank you all for your assistance in making this program a success.”


                                                                                                                 Donna Duquette, J.D.

The Maryland legislature has passed a bill correcting problems with the Maryland Mediation Confidentiality Act. The changes are designed to keep intake conversations confidential and to ensure that participants may decide if they want to exempt some but not all communications from the Act. The Maryland mediation community, including MCDR, worked together to get the bill passed.

        sb0409 passed.pdf

        hb0697 passed.pdf2013

        SB409 Joint Testimony.docx


 MCDR offers our assistance to CBS to ensure more realistic depictions of mediation on TV shows. 

            Letter to CBS-The Good Wife.pdf

 MCDR and other ADR organizations encourage Governor O’Malley to appoint a Chief Judge with a commitment to mediation and ADR. 

            Gov OMalley letter (signed_ color) 1-31-13.pdf




Quarterly Membership Meetings for 2014

To Be Determined

This website was designed by divorce mediator Roslyn Zinner, LCSW-C .

The MCDR Board commends and appreciates Roz Zinner's generosity in providing MCDR with office space.



The Mediation Confidentiality Act passed on April 9, 2012.

This act extends confidentiality protections to cases which are not court referred.

MCDR participated in a collaborative effort with  other mediation organizations to get this important bill through the legislature.

Maryland Council for Dispute Resolution
8288 Telegraph Road - Suite A
 Odenton, Maryland   21113

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MCDR is the oldest membership based organization in Maryland dedicated to promoting the use of mediation and supporting the mediation profession.  It has a proud history of successfully advocating for allowing multiple professions to practice mediation when there were attempts to restrict it fifteen years ago.  It is the first organization to establish performance based criteria for mediators which has been used as a national model in the ongoing dialogue on quality assurance and mediator credentials.

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