Darren A. Lee, executive director of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, recently confirmed that Steven R. Jaffe, Ana Cristina Maldonado and Carl B. Schwait of UWWM are among 2020's inductees into the academy. It's an honor shared by 28 of their fellow Upchurch Watson White & Max panel members who have become members in prior years.
Some UWWM mediators are recognized as charter members of the academy as they had been members of the Florida Circuit-Civil Mediator Society, a predecessor of the current academy. NADN was formed in 2008, when committees from several state associations agreed to affiliate.
The academy offers its roster of litigator-rated mediators and arbitrators to website visitors at no cost. "Our Academy website allows visitors to find the most experienced ADR professionals, as widely approved by local litigation firms, and expedites the scheduling process for both mediators/arbitrators and their clients.
Here's a bit more about UWWM's 2020 inductees:
Steven R. Jaffe joined the firm in 2017, after litigating a wide variety of civil matters, from both the defense and plaintiff sides, throughout Florida and nationwide since 1984. He served as a partner at several well-known civil trial firms; fellow partners have included a Florida Bar president and, most recently, a Florida Justice Association president and a sitting Florida state senator.
Ana Cristina Maldonado joined UWWM just last year, but she has spent her entire legal career in the field of dispute resolution. In nine years, she has mediated over 1,800 cases, working with over 300 attorneys and many hundreds of self-represented parties in the areas of Circuit Civil, Dependency and Family. She is trilingual, speaking Spanish and Portuguese fluently, in addition to English.
Carl B. Schwait began mediating full-time in 2015 and joined UWWM in 2016. He has built his mediation practice on his trial, legal, business and educational expertise. Before his retirement from private practice, he served as senior and managing partner for Dell Graham, P.A. (Gainesville), directing 12 select attorneys with extensive trial experience.