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Webinar: Mediating the Impossible: Dealing with Difficult Personalities

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March 24, 2023 @ 12:00 pm 1:00 pm

Special low price! 1 Hour MCLE. Co-sponsored by the Los Angeles County Bar Association Alternative Dispute Resolution Section

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Join Judge White, Thomas J. Johnston, Esq., and Christopher E. Faenza for this program where they’ll discuss real-world examples from their experiences mediating cases that seem impossible to settle, due to difficult parties and attorneys. With perspectives from both plaintiff and defense, they will provide tips such as:

  • Maintaining client control
  • Educating client on the mediation process
  • Effective use of breaks
  • Explaining the mediator’s role

Non-Member Price – $55.00
Member Price – $25.00

Christopher E. Faenza

Chris Faenza is a Partner of Yoka | Smith.  He was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, and was raised in New Jersey.   He was admitted to the Bar of the State of New Jersey in 1994, the State of New York in 1995, and the State of California in 2000. Chris received his Bachelor of Science degree from Penn State University in 1988 and his Juris Doctor degree from Rutgers School of Law-Newark in 1994. Upon graduating from Rutgers, he clerked for the Presiding Superior Court Judge in Passaic County, New Jersey, where he worked on family and criminal law issues.
Chris has extensive trial experience, having taken over 75 Superior Court jury trials to verdict in both New Jersey and California.  Of the cases Chris has taken to verdict, more than 85% of the cases have resulted in a defense verdict and most of the remaining verdicts have come in below the final demand made in those matters.  Chris has obtained defense verdicts in wrongful death, intentional torts, business litigation, health clubs, auto, trucking and product liability cases.

Thomas Johnston

Thomas J. Johnston concentrates his practice on the trial of personal injury, including catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death matters. He represents clients throughout the United States.
Johnston has recovered numerous significant verdicts and settlements for his clients, including four verdicts and three settlements against transportation companies in excess of $55 million dollars. In 2016, he obtained a $22.4 million jury verdict against the City of Los Angeles in a wrongful death matter – the largest verdict of its kind in the United States. In 2017, Johnston obtained a $5 million dollar verdict in a wrongful death matter against a property owner for failing to warn of a dangerous condition on a roadway. In 2015, Johnston obtained a $9.5 million recovery for a pedestrian injured by a Los Angeles County bus operator. In 2014, he was co-lead counsel in a significant case that went to the California Courts of Appeal resulting in a landmark decision regarding the duties of landowners who have dangerous conditions on their property.

Elizabeth White, Moderator

Hon. Elizabeth Allen White (Ret.) retired as a judge of the Los Angeles Superior Court in July 2020 after serving 23 years on the court and now serves as an arbitrator and mediator at JAMS. Judge White was assigned to serve as a justice pro tem of the California Court of Appeal, 2nd District in 2004 and again in 2020. Her judicial career started in the then Los Angeles Municipal Court in 1997, and she was elevated in 2000 upon unification. Previously, she was a trial attorney representing both plaintiffs and defendants in employment and general business litigation.
Judge White presided in Department 48, an independent civil calendar court at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles. She served as chair of the Judicial Education Seminars Civil Law Subcommittee from 2016 through her retirement in 2020. As such, she chaired a committee that developed judicial education for all civil judges in the County of Los Angeles. Prior to that, she chaired the Civil Law Education Committee for the Judicial Council’s Judicial Education and Research Department. She has been a frequent lecturer for judicial education throughout California and served as adjunct faculty at USC’s Gould School of Law’s LL.M. program, where she taught Constitutional Law and Professional Responsibility. She also served as adjunct faculty at Loyola Law School, where she taught Civil Discovery, and she was an instructor for UCLA Extension’s Paralegal Training Program. Judge White received her undergraduate degree from UCLA and obtained her J.D. from Loyola Law School.


Mediation Week Webinar Series

In California, the third week in March is traditionally recognized as Mediation Week. CLA is hosting a series of webinars in observance of Mediation Week to highlight the availability and benefits of mediation programs and to acknowledge the mediators and others who make those programs successful. Check out more webinars in this series:

We are committed to accessibility! Virtual events are equipped with closed captioning. To request an in-person accommodation, send us a note at or contact us at 916-516-1760 for assistance.


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