"Present at the Creation"
By Richard Chernick
Richard Chernick practiced at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher for 25 years as a commercial trial lawyer before he became a full-time arbitrator and mediator in 1994. He was at AAA for seven years and since 2001 has been the Vice-President and Managing Director of the JAMS Arbitration Practice. He has served as President of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, President of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, Chair of the Dispute Resolution Section of the ABA, and Founding President of the College of Commercial Arbitrators. He has taught ADR and Arbitration at USC Gould School of Law, UCLA Law School, and Pepperdine Law School.
The phrase was originated by Dean Acheson in his memoir, Present at the Creation: My Years in the State Department.
It is more than an honor to be the first ADR Hall of Fame member, all the more so because of my respect and admiration for the Litigation Section of the California Lawyers Association. I have been asked to address briefly the history of the development of ADR and arbitration in California on the occasion of the inauguration of this special recognition for ADR pioneers.