Robert C. Murphy Courts of Appeal Building
361 Rowe Boulevard
|For Immediate Release||CONTACT:||Rita Buettner
(Annapolis, MD — April 25, 2006) The District Court of Maryland’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Office will honor 62 ADR volunteers at an annual appreciation event at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 26, at Mrs K’s Toll House Restaurant in Silver Spring.
The Outstanding ADR Volunteer Appreciation Dinner will honor volunteers who collectively provided more than 1,500 hours of pro bono service in 2005. The volunteers have not only actively maintained their practitioner status by attending optional professional development and ADR training courses, but also mentored new apprentice volunteers and promoted ADR processes in the community.
Chief Judge Ben C. Clyburn of the District Court of Maryland will personally thank the volunteers and present two distinguished awards. Keith Seat, Esq., a full-time mediator and arbitrator in Silver Spring, will be honored as the volunteer with the most pro bono hours (106), and Richard Melnick, Esq., an associate Attorney for Montgomery County, will be designated Volunteer of the Year. Judge Clyburn will recognize each of the outstanding volunteers with a certificate of appreciation.
Because all of the ADR Office’s mediators serve on a volunteer basis, litigants who file cases in District Court have the opportunity to resolve disputes free of charge without going to trial.
“By using mediation, our volunteers help settle District Court cases before they come to court,” said Alice Gonlin, director of ADR Programs for the District Court. “Their commitment and dedication reduces the burden on the court system, saves Maryland’s taxpayers money, and leaves the people involved in the cases more satisfied with a solution they helped develop.”
The volunteer pool is a culturally diverse group of about 450 talented ADR professionals who are licensed in Maryland, Virginia, the District of Columbia, and Pennsylvania; attorneys; social workers; homemakers; business professionals; psychologists; state and federal employees; and active and retired military.
The event is not open to the public, although media are welcome to cover the event. For more information, please contact the Court Information Office at (410) 260-1488.
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