The Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution, in collaboration with the Moritz College of Law's Program on Dispute Resolution, is pleased to bring you Volume 16, Issue 1, of the Mayhew-Hite Report on Dispute Resolution and the Courts.

The U.S. Department of Justice Community Relations Service: Assisting Communities in Resolving Conflicts and Restoring Peace

Grande Lum, Francis Amoroso & Rosa Melendez*

On Sunday, August 5, 2012, an individual with alleged white supremacist ties entered a Sikh gurdwara, or temple, in the community of Oak Creek, Wisconsin, and opened fire on the congregation. Six worshippers were killed and four others were wounded, including a responding law enforcement officer.[i] Within hours of the shooting, Community Relations Services (CRS) was in contact with national and local Sikh organizational leaders, the U.S. attorney for the district, and numerous federal and local law enforcement officials. In addition, CRS helped facilitate communication between law enforcement and community members, providing contact information for key law enforcement officials. Later that same week, CRS and the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin facilitated a key leadership meeting to discuss hate crimes, analyze community concerns over the shooting, and assess community needs for funerals. CRS and its federal and local partners then assisted in the planning and moderation of a larger community meeting at Oak Creek High School that was attended by more than 250 people from the greater Milwaukee area.

A Hate Crime in a Quiet Community Elicits a Unique Mandate

The Oak Creek, Wisconsin, gurdwara attack serves as an example of the services CRS can provide to communities in the wake of a hate crime. Founded under the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the CRS supports state and municipal government officials, law enforcement executives, and community leaders with resolving disputes based on racial and ethnic tensions, to improve police-community relations. CRS also helps local leaders prevent and respond to alleged violent hate crimes committed on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, or disability. CRS is not an investigatory or prosecutorial agency, and it has no law enforcement authority. The agency does not impose solutions or assign blame or fault. All CRS services are provided free of charge to the communities and are confidential. CRS works in all 50 states and the U.S. territories in communities large and small, rural, urban, and suburban. Most of CRS’ work originates from requests by police chiefs, mayors, school administrators, local government authorities, community-based organizations, tribal communities, and civil and human rights groups.

Read more


Culture and its Importance in Mediation

National University of Singapore Professor Jole Lee's Culture and its Importance in Mediation originally appeared in Pepperdine’s Dispute Resolution Law Journal, Volume 16, Issue 2. The article focuses on the importance of considering culture in conducting mediations. Professor Lee begins by stating that culture is so pervasive in daily life, that we often do not realize its effect. The article takes a deep-dive into Singapore’s journey in dealing with the intersection between culture and mediation.[1]

Professor Lee asserts that the problem with academic definitions of culture is that the definitions may over-generalize or be overly simplistic. More comprehensive definitions of culture address so many variations and exceptions such that their usefulness is undermined.

Sometimes, culture is equated with the rules, etiquette, and customs of a particular community or group. Yet this definition fails to consider that rules, etiquette and customs are usually manifestations of the “cultural iceberg” that lies beneath. According to Lee, the task of delineating culture is made more arduous by a “shrinking world” and the segmentation of cultures. Formerly, culture could be defined fairly easily along national or ethnic lines. Even then, there would be exceptions, but widespread norms in a community could be nonetheless identified.  asserts that in the past, there was little cross-influence of various cultures: members of one culture had little to no exposure to other cultures.[2]

Read more


City of Cleveland Consent Decree

On March 14, 2013, the United States Department of Justice began an investigation into the Cleveland Division of Police’s policies and practices, at the request of Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson. The goal of this investigation was to determine whether CDP engaged in a pattern or practice of using excessive force, in violation of the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, 42 U.S.C. § 14141. [1]As a part of this investigation, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and police-practice experts conducted a comprehensive assessment of CDP’s use of force, as well as its policies and community engagement efforts, among other factors. The investigation included meetings with Cleveland residents, community groups, members of religious communities, and the Civilian Police Review Board. Members of the Cleveland community, including community advocates, religious leaders, and members of CDP’s unions took an interest in the investigation and played a critical role in providing information and facilitating the investigation.

On December 4, 2014, the DOJ announced that it had reasonable cause to believe that the CDP engaged in a pattern or practice of use of excessive force, due in part to certain systemic deficiencies.[2] These deficiencies related to operational and structural areas of CDP, including community policing efforts. The City agreed that the findings raised important issues that needed to be addressed by both the City and the community. To ensure that the Decree effectively responded to the community’s concerns, the DOJ and CDP consulted with community leaders, police officers, residents, and other concerned individuals. Thus, the Decree (i) reflects the input received from the various communities within the City of Cleveland and (ii) emphasizes the importance of engaging with these communities to resolve disputes.[3]

Read more


  • Heckman Presents Lawrence Lecture to a Packed House

    On September 28, 2017 New York Peace Institute CEO Brad Heckman delivered Moritz's Annual Lawrence Lecture on Dispute Resolution titled Mediation on the Beat: Bringing Conflict Resolution Skills to Police Departments.  Brad explored his experience training hundreds of officers in the New York Police Department in mediation and dispute resolution as part of a program designed to rebuild civilian-police relationships.  The NYPD is working to hard-wire mediation skills into police training, and develop a vibrant partnership between community mediation centers and police precincts. Brad highlighted the challenges in training law enforcement during deeply divided times and discussed which mediation tactics are most useful in peacefully deescalating conflicts between police and civilians.

  • Recent Grad Awarded Honorable Mention in Boskey Competition

    Brian Holb ('17) earned Honorable Mention in the 2017 James B. Boskey Law Student Essay Contest on Dispute Resolution.  Brian's award-winner paper Making the Case for Mediation in Public Sector Labor Relations was developed as part of Mortitz's Mediation Clinic course under the supervision of Prof. Ellen Deason.  Brian's article is available for review on the ABA's website.  Great work Brian!

  • More than Fifty Compete in Lawrence Negotiation Competition

    Congratulations to the more than 50 students who participated in the 2017 Lawrence Negotiation Competition.  After four nights of hard work four negotiating teams came out on top:

    1. First Place: Christopher Stevens and Anthony Thompson
    2. Second Place: Alex Karcher and Tyler Simms
    3. Third Place: Nicole Repetto and Cameron Wright
    4. Fourth Place: Sungtaek Jun and Matthew Mendoza

    Great work!  Chris, Anthony, Nicole, and Cameron head to Michigan in early November to compete in this year’s regional competition.  Wish them luck!

  • Moritz Alums Implement Award-Winning ODR Program

    On August 31, 2017 the Ohio State Bar Association awarded the 2017 Judicial Administration and Legal Reform Committee Innovative Court Practices Award to the Franklin County Municipal Court Online Dispute Resolution Program.  Franklin County Small Claims Dispute Resolution Manager Alex Sanchez ('11) and Franklin County Small Claims Dispute Resolution Supervisor Veronica Cravener ('08) developed, implemented, and managed the award-winning ODR program on behalf of the court.  Congratulations Alex & Veronica!

  • 3L Engages in Sport Arbitration during Summer Clerkship

    Kim & Chang is the largest law firm in South Korea.  I was thrilled to have the opportunity to clerk at Kim & Chang during the summer--and took every opportunity to network with experienced international attorneys.  On my very first day, Attorney Jin Han was seeking a few summer clerks to support his arbitration work. I did not have any knowledge regarding the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Mr. Han helped me understand the procedural rules and explained what my task would be for the summer.

    Like Judges--arbitrators develop a volume of decisions which illustrate their style, decision-making process, and the factors the find critical to the disposition of a case.  Three CAS arbitrators decide every case on a panel.  To support Mr. Han, I worked as a “detective” and find patterns, tendencies, strengths and weaknesses of each arbitrator.  This meant that I would have to go back several years and read each and every ruling written by the arbitrators involved in each matter. Although I was involved with eight to ten different projects during the summer, the CAS project was one of the most challenging and interesting.  Because I was so deeply involved in the CAS project, I was able to observe how arbitration cases evolved throughout the summer.

    While working on the project, I became very close with Mr. Han. While having coffee, he mentioned that he spent a year in Seattle. I have many relatives in Seattle, and frequently visit the city. We had many things in common and what started off as a summer work-relationship turned into a friendship. We met several times outside of work and we continue to stay in touch today. During my time at Kim & Chang, we always joked about how he should come visit Columbus. On Friday August 25 Mr. Han delivered a presentation here at Moritz titled Court of Arbitration for Sport and Unique Aspects of Sports Arbitration.  

    My work on CAS with Mr. Han enriched my summer experience with Kim & Chang.  I'm thrilled Mr. Han was able to discuss CAS with my fellow students here at Moritz and I appreciate Mr. Han's mentorship.

    Mr. Han (center) is picture with Larry Shim and Nicole Repetto.

  • Fifty Students Trained as Truancy Mediators

    On Friday September 29 and Saturday September 30, fifty Moritz students attended the Truancy Mediation Project's mediation training session. Marya Kolman, Director of Mediation Services for the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Division of Domestic Relations and Juvenile Branch led the twelve hour training.

    The Truancy Mediation Project provides basic mediation skills and truancy mediation training to an enthusiastic group of students, including 1Ls. Students mediate cases involving school officials, students, and parents with the goals of fostering clearer understanding of expectations between schools and families, helping to generate ideas that will help young people and their families believe school attendance is a high priority, and, ultimately, reduce absences in schools.



Welcome to the 2017-18 MHR

Welcome to the first issue of the Mayhew-Hite Report for 2017-2018. We’re your editors, Mary Bockstahler and Brooke Mangiarelli. The theme of this issue is community, culture, and dispute resolution. Over the last few years, community disputes have gained much attention in the news, from events in Ferguson, Missouri to Cleveland, Ohio, to Baltimore, Maryland. An important part of resolving these disputes through alternative dispute resolution requires effective community engagement that considers the cultures of affected communities, as well as other parties to the disputes and their mediators. Thus, dispute resolution, community, and culture are all inherently intertwined, and the materials included in this issue accordingly reflect the importance of community engagement in alternative dispute resolution.

This first issue presents one feature article: The U.S. Department of Justice Community Relations Service: Assisting Communities in Resolving Conflicts and Restoring Peace, written by Grande Lum, Divided Community Project Director and Moritz College of Law Professor and former Director of the Department of Justice's Community Relations Service, as well as Francis Amoroso, and Rosa Melendez.

Our feature article summary, written by Mary Bockstahler, showcases the article Culture and its Importance in Mediation by Joel Lee, Associate Professor at the  National University of Singapore, Faculty of Law. This article originally appeared in Pepperdine’s Dispute Resolution Law Journal, Volume 16, Issue 2.

Instead of a case summary, this issue includes a summary of key portions of the City of Cleveland's 2015 Consent Decree (“Decree”) with the U.S. Department of Justice in U.S. v. City of Cleveland. The Decree was the result of the Justice Department’s  2013–2014 investigation into the Cleveland Division of Police’s (“CDP”) policies and practices, to determine whether the CDP engaged in a pattern or practice of using excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Part of the Decree focuses on community engagement and trust-building to resolve disputes between the CDP and Cleveland’s diverse communities, which reflects the theme of this issue of the Mayhew-Hite Report.


Judicial Intervention in Communities in Conflict

Leigh Anne Newcomer*
In an era of division and unrest, courts are an overlooked resource for bridging divided communities.  If utilized properly in the right setting, courts can prevent conflict from escalating and “add the critical dimension of getting people in divided communities to deliberate about ways to solve, or at least ameliorate, the problems underlying their differences.”[1]  Attorneys with mediation experience can contribute to resolving issues in their own communities by recommending court involvement at the right moments and for the right conflicts.

This article reviews two instances of constructive court involvement—one by a state court system prior to any litigation and one by a federal district court that mediated a conflict well beyond the issues in pending litigation and involved more than the parties to the dispute.  Then the article examines the arguments against court involvement beyond the parties and issues in pending cases.  It suggests that courts and attorneys who recommend the mediation can deal with these arguments—which raise valid concerns—through appropriate structuring, effective timing, and choice of conflicts involving the courts.

Courts have the potential to contribute significantly to communities in conflict and often have advantages, as illustrated below in the two success stories.  Some community members may be distrustful of public officials, and as a perceived neutral; courts may be able to better engender trust and engage stakeholders in an intervention process.  A court can also help provide critical local intervention when other state or local officials cannot balance the tensions between accountability and creating the requisite climate for dispute resolution processes.  In many instances, courts have broadened cases to deal with conflict well beyond the issues in dispute to come up with a widely-supported agreement for sustainable change.  Furthermore, sponsoring community intervention does not necessarily undermine confidence in the justice system if court-appointed intervenors maintain neutrality, act on their promises and communicate their actions in a way that the public can understand, and allow people a forum express to their views.  Court-appointed intervenors can perform these functions while simultaneously respecting people and their rights.

State and federal district courts have engaged in innovative efforts by both creating ways to proactively address problems in divided communities, and providing a forum to constructively discuss and resolve issues after unrest has occurred.  Interventions by the Maryland Court of Appeals and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio in Cincinnati illustrate how courts can be well-suited as intervenors in communities in conflict.Read more


Moritz Program on Dispute Resolution

Widely regarded as one of the nation's finest programs in the area of Alternative Dispute Resolution, the Moritz ADR program was established in recognition of the need for future lawyers to be trained in an array of dispute resolution methods beyond litigation, including negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. [Program Home]

Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution

The Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution ("JDR") is a student-initiated, student-run publication and is the official law journal of the American Bar Association's Section on Dispute Resolution. [JDR Home]

The Caucus

The Caucus is a monthly e-newsletter that highlights the scholarship and accomplishments of the Moritz Program on Dispute Resolution faculty and students. [The Caucus Home]


Indisputably is a blog operated by law professors from around the United States concentrating on issues involving dispute resolution. [Indisputably Home]

Bridge Initiative @ Mershon and Moritz

The Bridge Initiative, which combines resources from Moritz College of Law and the Mershon Center for International Securities Studies, is an indispensable resource for those doing research in issues involving dispute resolution. [Bridge Initiative Home]

Contact US

Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution
The Ohio State University
Moritz College of Law
55 West 12th Avenue
Columbus, Ohio 43210-1391
(614) 292-7170

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