Hon. Rebecca Westerfield (Ret.) has been a full-time neutral with JAMS since 1992 and is one of its founding members. Judge Westerfield has mediated and arbitrated thousands of complex U.S. domestic and cross-border civil disputes. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, including: Chambers: Leading Mediators, National Journal ADR Champion, Trial Lawyers Association: Mediator of the Year and Best Lawyers: Lawyer of the Year in Mediation.
Judge Westerfield has presented at numerous international programs on mediation in Asia, Europe and Latin America, taught as an adjunct professor at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, and lectured at Stanford University Law School. She is particularly interested in the use of mediation skills and techniques in the making of public policy and in cross-cultural communication. Prior to joining JAMS, she had served as a trial court judge of general jurisdiction.
In addition to maintaining a full-time practice and her service on the JAMS Board of Managers, Judge Westerfield has been active with various organizations dedicated to social justice, human rights, education and nonviolent conflict resolution. She has served as chair of the American Bar Association section on Civil Rights and Social Justice, as a member of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession and as a member of the ABA Human Rights Commission. Judge Westerfield has also been a member of the Board of Directors of the Northern California World Affairs Council, of Convergence (a Washington, D.C. based organization dedicated to facilitating bi-partisan discussion of controversial public issues), of the Human Right Center of the University of California, Berkeley, of the Foundation for Sustainable Rule of Law (an institute promoting mediation worldwide) and of the Danny Weinstein Youth Foundation, among other organizations. She is also active with the National Association of Women Judges (U.S.) and the International Association of Women Judges.
Judge Westerfield is a certified mediator with the International Mediation Institute, an elected Fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators and a member of Arbitral Women (an organization dedicated to promoting qualified women practitioners in international arbitration forums).
In pursuing her interests in nonviolent conflict resolution, Judge Westerfield organized a successful international forum involving over 500 participants from 27 countries, including Elie Wiesel and Secretary Madeline Albright, to address the issues of “Justice, Religion and Conflict Resolution.”