Wawra Dispute Resolution

Steven Wawra

Steven A. Wawra, Esq. – highly experienced in culturally sensitive negotiations and mediations

Representation of foreign parties in corporate and law firm positions

Over 1000 civil mediations and settlement conferences

Lifetime of exposure to foreign cultures due to professional, educational and family background

When your clients are from a culture other than the U.S. and are directly involved in the mediation of a dispute, it is very helpful to have a mediator with cultural competence.  Subject matter understanding is important, but also very important is the ability to relate to the person in a cultural way.

Showing an understanding of the party’s stated and unstated communication develops rapport - a trust and respect that often facilitates a resolution of the dispute in a more efficient and acceptable manner. As a result of a lifetime of exposure to various foreign cultures, Steve has developed a sensitivity to cultural nuances which is applicable no matter which culture is involved in the dispute.

Professional, educational and family experiences with international parties which have developed a deep cultural understanding:

  • General Counsel and Senior Vice President of Mitsui Real Estate Sales involved in corporate issues and the negotiation of real estate acquisitions, leasing and joint venture agreements from a Japanese perspective
  • Attorney with Graham & James (merged with Squire, Sanders & Dempsey), participating as legal counsel for Bank of Tokyo of California (now Union Bank of California), Marubeni America Corporation and other Japanese trading companies
  • Representation (as attorney with a NY law firm) of a Swiss public company in the acquisition of a U.S. company
  • Commercial real estate broker in leasing and acquisition activities for Japanese, UK, French and U.S  entities 
  • Mediations  conducted with Japanese, Korean, Indian  and other foreign parties in disputes involving real estate, business entity and other commercial disputes
  • Member of business development efforts in Tokyo, one for a publicly-held mutual fund corporation, and the other with a real estate industry team of various professional practices led by the Mayor of Los Angeles
  • Presentations relating to cultural understanding, including on a panel of the Orange County Asian American Bar Association, speaking on “Mediation and Settlement from an Asian Perspective”, as panel chair of the International Section of the Orange County Bar Association, speaking on “ABC’s of International ADR”, and currently under discussion, a seminar presentation to the Fatih University Law School in Istanbul, Turkey, on “History and Use of ADR in Southern California”
  • Parents from Switzerland and life-long experiences with extended family in Switzerland, France and Italy
  • French language and cultural courses at the Sorbonne and Monterey Institute of International Studies
  • Member - USCIB Arbitration Subcommittee Southwest to the International Chamber of Commerce

For other educational information and career legal positions, please see Steve Wawra’s Resume.

Attorney references available regarding his successes in culturally sensitive mediations.

It would be a pleasure to assist with the resolution of a dispute involving international parties.



430 Vista Grande
Newport Beach, CA 92660-4004
Phone: (949) 640-4500