The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law November 2014
ADR @ Moritz

Community Relations Service Director Grande H. Lum Promotes Peacemaking in America

The Department of Justice Community Relations Service (CRS) Director Grande H. Lum spoke to a packed Saxbe Auditorium on Tuesday, September 30, 2014 about the role CRS has played in conflict resolution and conciliation in the United States since CRS' inception 50 years ago as part of the Civil Rights Act. In a talk peppered with intimate portraits of individuals as well as real world examples of communities in conflict, he explained how CRS and its regional offices have been at the forefront of developing customized and proactive solutions to help bring communities in conflict together and enable them to independently prevent and resolve existing and future concerns.

Taking questions from the audience, he discussed some of the nuances of being part of the federal government, but also finding ways to become part of communities and maintain connections and a presence in communities that allow for continued support of conflict resolution efforts. He also spoke about the trade-offs between who does and does not get invited to conversations, pointing out in response to student questions the sometimes counter-intuitive nature of who is or is not at the table. For example, he explained, sometimes groups that should be included in the conversation might be wary if they think government prosecutors will be in the room, so the involvement of other branches of the DOJ may need to be limited in certain settings. On the other hand, CRS frequently works with other branches of the DOJ in situations where there is an investigation of a civil rights violation and community groups need to come together to discuss the impact on the community.

The event, a kick-off to Moritz’s annual Lawrence Negotiation Competition, was held through the generous support of Class of '65 alum James K.L. Lawrence.

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The Caucus, the newsletter published by the Moritz Program on Dispute Resolution, is designed to share ADR news with the Moritz community and beyond, as well as provide Moritz students with information regarding externship and employment opportunities. Questions regarding this publication should be directed to Erin Archerd, Langdon Fellow in Dispute Resolution.