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<xTITLE>Legal Section Editorial</xTITLE>

Legal Section Editorial

by L. Randolph Lowry
May 2002 L. Randolph Lowry
Go to Legal Section

Welcome to the newest on-line resources for lawyers – The Legal Section. This section has been developed with resources of particular interest to practicing lawyers. It is full of information that will help you serve clients more effectively and practice more successfully.

When the term “Alternative Dispute Resolution” was coined in the early 1980’s, many in our profession viewed the non-litigation process with uncertainty and even suspicion. Yet, overtime, the unknown “alternatives” have become an important part of the legal landscape in America. In fact, they have become integral to the operation of courts, preferred by clients and the core of what lawyers do most of the time, which is to settle disputes.

While a new profession is growing up around ADR, the legal profession has accepted and is even substantially claiming the field. The American Bar Association’s largest section is now the ABA Dispute Resolution Section. Everyday, thousands of cases are resolved by lawyers using one of the more than twenty Dispute Resolution Processes. Law schools teach it, courts require it and lawyers are leading what has been described as the “retooling” of the legal system for its next century of service.

Enough of the background, at your fingertips in the Legal Section of are resources – most of them free – to give you the ADR advantage in your legal practice. Hundreds of articles provide you with strategic practice information. Data about the selection of mediators and arbitrators, including extensive biographical and practice information, is available. Education and training resources are provided to help you spend your ADR continuing education dollars in ways that really make a difference. The Legal Section offers you “cutting edge” information, unparalleled on-line resources, and confidence that what you gain will put you ahead in legal practice.

Beyond ADR, I hope you will note the broader possibilities of as the nation’s premier on-line resource for dispute resolution. Because dispute resolution is the work of many lawyers, a Dynamic Web Site, which operates at both and, can be an important location for information about your entire practice and firm. With over a million visitors this year, is an increasing important resource for professional neutrals and lawyers.

Each year, the Institute I direct at Pepperdine Law School works in more than 40 states and a half dozen foreign countries - supporting lawyers who are strategically using dispute resolution in their practices. I am always looking for technology that can expand resources available to members of the legal profession. – now with this dedicated Legal Section – is a resource that is available all day, everyday. Enjoy the growing knowledge base of our section and let me know how we can help you to be more successful as a lawyer utilizing or offering ADR services.

Visit the Legal Section at


As the President of Lipscomb University in Nashville and as founder and former director of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Professor Randy Lowry is one of the nation's leaders in the dispute resolution field. As a professor he provides academic leadership to Pepperdine's extensive dispute resolution program, and is consulted regularly by other universities regarding their work in that field.

Randy has served as a visiting professor at Vermont Law School, University of New Mexico, University of Idaho, Abilene Christian University, Hamline University (Modena, Italy), City University of Hong Kong, as well as Bond University in Australia. As a teacher, he trains more than 4000 lawyers, judges, and managers in more that 25 states and several foreign countries each year.

Organizations that have utilized his training include Federal Judicial Center, National Judicial Institute (Canada), Nike, Lexis-Nexis, State Farm Insurance, Chevron, and hundreds of others. He is co-author of three books in dispute resolution.

Professor Lowry is also a practitioner of what he teaches, regularly mediating complex cases. Such experiences range from the resolution of multi-million dollar civil cases and public policy disputes in the United States to the resolution of organizational conflict in Nairobi, Kenya. In addition, he regularly consults with public and private sector organizations on the effective management of conflict.

Professor Lowry is the co-founder and the first president of the Southern California Mediation Association, and co-founder and board member of the Ventura Center for Dispute Settlement. He was a gubernatorial appointment to the California Dispute Resolution Advisory Council, which established California's community dispute resolution programs. He served on the Judicial Council's Task Force on the Quality of Justice, looking at dispute resolution and the courts. Recently he was appointed by the Chief Justice of California to the Blue Ribbon Committee on Arbitration Ethics. He has also held leadership roles in many professional associations, including the American Bar Association's Torts and Insurance Practice Section.

B.A., Pepperdine University, 1974 M.P.A, Pepperdine University, 1977 J.D., Hamline University School of Law, 1981

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