FAMILY LAW:

  • Marriage Dissolution 
  • Cooperative Practice
  • Child Support 
  • Child Custody 
  • Paternity Adjudication 
  • Orders for Protection
  • Prenuptial Agreements
  • Post Decree Issue
  • Cohabitation Agreements
  • Consultations
  • Guardianship
  • Conservatorship

 

DISPUTE RESOLUTION:

Marriage Dissolution 
Spousal Maintenance
Parenting Plan Conflicts 
Cohabitation Disputes 
Paternity Issues 
Probate Disputes 
Family Conflicts 
Parenting Time Expeditor (PTE) 
Parenting Consultant (PC) 
Social Early Neutral Evaluation (SENE) 
Financial Early Neutral Evaluation (FENE) 

EXPERIENCE 

My first "career" was as a high school social studies teacher, where I taught twelfth graders introductory economics, political science, and sociology.  Even then, I knew my goal was to become an attorney, and I went to William Mitchell College of Law to achieve that goal. 

My first legal work was in the labor-management world, where I learned the essence of negotiating and what we now call alternative dispute resolution.  My early experiences included drafting contract language, preparing for and attending arbitrations, and participating in contract negotiations, which often ended up in mediation. 

In 1987, I went into private practice, focusing on family law and criminal defense. I spent the next twelve years as a part-time Ramsey County Public Defender.  My initial training as a mediator took place in 1989, and I worked in some of the early dispute resolution programs offered by the Mediation Center and the Ramsey County Settlement Conference Coordinator program. 

For the first fifteen years of my practice, my hope was that family law would incorporate the techniques and processes I learned in my early labor-management days.  However, in my opinion, family law remained "stuck" in the old, adversarial world, and I spent a lot of my energy on criminal defense work.

By 2005,  that paradigm began to shift, and I decided to reenergize my family law and dispute resolution practice.   I set up a new office in Maplewood, working with like-minded colleagues,gradually closed out my criminal practice completely.   I now focus my practice on quality family law work and dispute resolution, helping others navigate major transitions in their lives.  Recently I began offering cooperative practice, social and financial neutral evaluation, parenting consulting, and parenting expediting to the services I offer.  I feel energized by my work and look forward to continuing on this path for some years to come.

 

EDUCATION

Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in Economics, from the University of Minnesota

Master of Arts Degree from the University of St. Thomas in Education

Juris Doctor from William Mitchel College of Law

PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES

  • Ramsey County Volunteer Family Law Mediation Program - senior mediator
  • Ramsey County Bar Association, Continuing Education Oversight Committee - co-chair
  • Cooperative Practice Network of Minnesota, founding member 
  • Minnesota State Bar Association, Family Law
  • Association of Family and Conciliation Courts - member
  • Ramsey County Bar Association, member, Family Law Section
  • Springboard for the Arts, volunteer lawyer
  • Warren E. Burger Inn of Court, past president and current master of the Inn