May 13, 2021 05:00 PM - May 29, 2021 06:00 PM
Basics of Mediation - Spring 2021

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  • May 13, Thu, 5-7pm PDT
  • May 15-16, Sat & Sun, 9:30am - 6pm PDT
  • May 22-23, Sat & Sun, 9:30am - 6pm PDT
  • May 29, Sat, 9:30am - 6pm PDT


Community Boards’ nationally recognized The Basics of Mediation introduces core conflict resolution skills in a training designed for managers, human resource professionals, attorneys, ombuds, social workers, community organizers, and others interested in learning conflict resolution and mediation skills.


Basics has set the “gold standard” for Northern California’s mediation trainings: comprehensive, practical, topical, and affordable.


Basics introduces and reinforces the skills critical for effective conflict resolution: clear communication, problem-solving, constructive engagement, mediation, and negotiation. Participants receive a training curriulum and supplemental handouts, attend lectures and presentations, work together in large and small groups, and discover and refine their personal techniques through a variety of coached role-play practices.


Basics is a 40-hour training held over four consecutive days, plus assigned learning modules. It is also a prerequisite for those interested in joining the volunteer Community Mediator pool for our Neighborhood Mediation Program.


Basics meets the minimum requirements for almost all California court mediation programs. Participants receive certificates upon completion.


Attendees gain the knowledge, skills, techniques, and strategies needed to handle a broad range of disputes. Training topics include:


  • Effective communication and active listening skills
  • Balancing power
  • Managing a negotiation
  • Cultural and gender issues in mediation
  • Dealing with strong emotions
  • Breaking impasse
  • De-escalating anger
  • Drafting agreements that work


Basics provides these additional professional benefits:


  • Gaining recognition to enhance your credibility and professional standing with the people that you serve
  • Investing in your career and demonstrating your professional experience and skills
  • Showing commitment and dedication to the profession
  • Distinguishing yourself by joining a committed community of professionals


Donald Proby
Donald, currently a doctoral scholar in educational leadership with an emphasis on cross cultural conflict transformation, has been a mediator, restorative justice practitioner, and conflict resolution trainer for over 35 years. He has worked in government, social services, nonprofit leadership, and public and holistic health arenas.


Donald also works with multiple Bay Area organizations to advance peace and community building. Donald has been co-leading our Basics of Mediation training since 2011. His approach to adult education involves holding space where learners are encouraged to engage with their natural curiosity, explore, experiment, and master the content through transformative embodied experiences. Donald works to create an environment where risk taking is encouraged and the collective experience is engaging.

Karen H. Lipney

As Community Boards ADR Programs Director, Karen oversees the day-to-day operations of programs including mediation, conflict coaching, facilitation and training, training and supervising volunteers, as well as maintaining crucial relationships that forward the mission and values of Community Boards. She is a trainer, mediator, facilitator, conflict coach and is a co-trainer of the Basics of Mediation.


Karen draws on years of experience working for a national labor union and before that, as an attorney. In a career transition, Karen focused on mediation to expand her skills and experience. In 2014, Karen began to volunteer her time for Community Boards as a Community Mediator, Conflict Coach, and Facilitator. In 2016 she joined the staff as the Outreach Coordinator. She was raised in San Francisco and giving back to the community is part of her family heritage.


Online via Zoom