Our OMA 2019 Conference was a great success! We hosted our 33rd annual conference back in Portland after spending 2018 in Eugene. We had great turnout – long-time practitioners, volunteer mediators, community members, students, and some new friendly faces to the profession. Our theme was “Managing Conflict: Bridging the Gap through Mediation and Beyond.” Back in 2018, our committee decided to begin providing “tracks” throughout the conference, or certain strings of workshops to attend that would be dedicated to topics such as family, business, or diversity and inclusion. Based on the positive feedback in 2018, we decided to continue expanding upon those “tracks” to develop networking within conference participants. We grew our list to six tracks, and will continue to create robust opportunities for more specialized education throughout the year. OMA also created a new award for 2019, or the “Spirit of Mediation” award. The committee awarded four practitioners who embody the “spirit” of mediation through one or more luminaries. The award winners were: Bryan Egan, Rene Bove, Stuart Watson, and Jack Bevilaqua. The board also shared initiatives each committee is working on during our annual open meeting, including a Mediators of Color network across Oregon. Finally, we introduced our new mentorship program during the conference. Reach out to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in learning more.
Sue Pickgrobe reports:
The OMA listserve is an easy and versatile way For all OMA members to communicate directly with each other on any topic related to dispute resolution. All you need to do is send an email to email@example.com. You can use it to ask questions of each other, to share information such as job opportunities and upcoming seminars, and to share special celebrations, life events.
OMA uses Google Groups as our listserv platform. This platform can also be used for topical discussions, can be started with an email on the main listserv and then moved to a separate discussion group for those interested in participating in or following that discussion. We can also set up standing discussion groups for practice areas, such as family or workplace.
The listserv is also flexible as to how frequently you receive communications. You can set up your profile to receive each email individually or to receive a digest of the day’s emails.
Starting in late January, 2020, all current members of OMA will automatically become listserv Members. We expect that you will enjoy participating in the listserv, but If for any reason you decide that you no longer want to participate, it’s easy to be removed By notifying OMA’s executive director at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any questions, or if you would like to lead a discussion group, you can contact the listserv moderator at email@example.com.
OMA awarded 11 scholarships for community dispute resolution center (CDRC) volunteer mediators for the 2019 OMA Conference. Volunteering with a CDRC is a wonderful opportunity for new mediators to gain experience, make connections in the mediator world, gain valuable mentoring opportunities and even attend the fall conference at a discounted rate. Even experienced mediators often find volunteering with CDRCs very helpful. They stay connected to their community, give back by mediating community and neighborhood issues and take advantage of the CDRCs continuing education opportunities. There are 16 CDRCs in Oregon, reach out to your local center and explore what opportunities they may have for you! https://law.uoregon.edu/explore/ADR-local-centers