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Kenneth D. Gack

Kenneth D. Gack Esq.

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Upcoming Events
General Biography
Practice Areas
Agribusiness & Food Law
Business Commercial
Employment Law
Environmental Law
Health Care
Personal Injury
Professional Liability
Real Property
Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities
Background and Education

Kenneth D. Gack, Esq. has been a full time neutral with JAMS since 1996 and has handled thousands of matters.  Prior to joining JAMS, Ken had a private ADR practice for several years, and before that, he founded and was managing partner of a law firm where he handled a variety of cases including business litigation, construction, agribusiness, real property and personal injury matters. 

As an arbitrator, mediator, judge pro tem and special master/discovery referee, Ken is lauded by clients for his thorough preparation, quick grasp complex facts, and his ability to relate to all parties.  Ken has a keen ability to grasp and resolve underlying insurance coverage, liability and indemnity issues that arise in business, professional liability, healthcare and personal injury cases.

Clients are continually impressed by Ken’s ability to exercise the utmost persistence and candor to help parties find realistic resolutions to their disputes.   

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Successfully mediated thousands of cases in a variety of civil litigation settings, including medical malpractice, employment, business disputes, real property, healthcare, and agribusiness
  • Arbitrator in over 300 matters
  • Distinguished Mediator of the Year Award from San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association in 2004
  • Frequent speaker on efficient and effective alternative dispute resolution

Representative Matters

  • Agribusiness & Food Law
      • Frequently serve as arbitrator and mediator in disputes between wineries and business partners including vineyard owners, vineyard maintenance, distributors, and marketing agencies
      • Mediated case involving allegations relating to row crop production, failure to achieve anticipated production, and 'best farming practices' issues
      • Mediated case of generational and ownership dispute of family dairy ranch
      • Arbitrated vineyard winery dispute regarding quality of fruit and smoke taint
  • Business Commercial
      • Mediated various partnership dissolutions in medical, construction, and real estate practices
      • Dissolution claim between co-owners of a nonprofit low-income housing LLC
      • Mediated a FACTA (Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act) case regarding credit card expiration dates being displayed on customer receipts at a group of pizza restaurants 
      • Arbitrator in a case involving alleged breach of manufacturing and packaging agreement by a food distribution company
      • Arbitrator in a dispute over the acquisition of machinery via an online auction
      • Successfully mediated contract and defamation dispute involving a sports minor league team and a city
      • Mediated case involving a dispute that arose after a contractual buyout of a business
      • Mediated breach of fiduciary duty case arising after a dissolution of a Limited Liability Partnership among accountants
      • Arbitration of a suitability action against a securities broker and the registered representative
      • Mediated and arbitrated numerous attorney fee issues including disputes between attorneys and firms; between clients and counsel; and allocation of recovery among multiple plaintiffs
  • Construction
      • Multiple single-family dwelling, condo, and townhome construction defect, SB800, and related matters with individual and HOA plaintiffs
      • Mediated breach of contract, consequential and delay damages by general residential contractor against subcontractor for alleged failure to meet critical path deadlines
      • Mediator and special master of construction defect claims arising from water intrusion in 32 single family dwellings, with alleged failures of stucco, flashing and window systems
      • Mediated various soils related claims, including slope failure/trespass, professional negligence claims against soils engineer and contractor 
      • Mediated claim involving alleged faulty engineering design of a sound wall
  • Employment Law
      • Mediator and arbitrator for numerous employment discrimination cases, including gender, race, age, and disability discrimination
      • Mediator for multiple harassment matters
      • Breach of employee confidentiality and trade secrets agreements
      • Mediator and arbitrator for numerous wrongful termination matters, including whistleblower actions
      • Mediation of wage and hour claims, including classification, meal and break claims, with penalty claims
      • Mediated claim for failure to accommodate disability in violation of FEHA by employee against public entity
  • Environmental Law
      • Mediated various claims concerning underground storage tanks 
      • Mediated case involving a fire abatement recovery action by State against Railroad operator
      • Mediation of contractual dispute over wind turbines and government regulation/impossibility defense
  • Health Care
      • Mediation of Kaiser Foundation disputes including billing issues
      • Mediated case involving hospital contract for directorship; fulfillment of contractual obligations between hospital and doctor
      • Mediator for case involving Fair process rights of panel physician and alleged disparagement 
        HIPPA/CMIA violation; disclosure of medical billing info, including billing codes, to divorced spouse
      • Mediation of indemnity/contribution action by skilled care facility against nursing registry for alleged failure to provide competent staffing, seeking recovery of settlement funds paid in wrongful death action
      • Mediation of multiple cases involving employee and former employee actions against hospitals and health care organizations, including workplace harassment, Stark and compliance issues
      • Mediated dispute between staff physician and hospital over revocation of privileges
  • Insurance
      • Mediated various coverage related disputes between insured and carrier and among carriers
      • Extensive experience with fire related claims for property loss, bodily injury claims and improper claims handling disputes
  • Personal Injury
      • Extensive experience in all types of PI/BI claims
      • Mediated case involving burn injuries of high school welding class student allegedly arising from failure of teacher to enforce safety standards
      • Mediated cases involving bodily injury and premises liability against city, county, state, and district public entities
      • Mediated case involving insurance and indemnity issues relating to a leg amputation arising from fall off of a fork lift
      • Mediated multiple cases involving allegations of elder abuse and wrongful death of patients resulting from care provider abuse
      • Mediated case with claims of female citizens against a public entity, Sheriff’s Department and patrol officer for unlawful strip searches
      • Mediated cases involving sexual molestation and accompanying insurance coverage issues
      • Mediated various public utility claims, including high voltage electrocution claims and natural gas claims
  • Product Liability
      • Mediated product liability action against manufacturer and café operator for alleged electrocution from lack of proper grounding and GFI circuit
      • Special Master in product liability case involving subrogation claims by manufacturer of heating units against manufacturer of components for losses incurred from fires
      • Mediated medical product liability case involving allegations of surgical stapler failure
      • In medical malpractice, personal injury and healthcare cases, handled many issues of product liability related to defective medical devices and products
      • Product liability matter involving claimed injuries arising out of the alleged failure of an artificial hip
      • Mediated claims against manufacturer and distributor regarding ADA mandated alleged defective product
  • Professional Liability
      • Mediated hundreds of medical malpractice cases involving failure to diagnose, wrongful death and other claims
      • Mediated medical malpractice case involving failure to diagnose and treat strep B infection in a homeless man, with resultant multiple amputations
      • Mediated medical malpractice case involving failure to diagnose and provide emergency response to hypoxic event of drug rehabilitation patient with resultant irreversible brain injury
      • Mediated case involving accounting errors in a real estate transaction
      • Mediated sensitive medical malpractice case against a doctor with additional charges of sexual assault
      • Mediated various claims against professionals including accounting, architectural, engineers, real estate agents/brokers and attorneys
  • Real Property
      • Trial judge for action to interpret and apply common area maintenance and improvement obligations among appurtenant commercial property owners
      • Handled bad faith action by homeowners’ policy insured for alleged delay in investigation, evaluation and appraisal, with resultant damages of mold and aggravated remediation costs
      • Numerous commercial property lease disputes and individual landlord-tenant disputes involving leases and habitability
      • Mediated inverse condemnation, alleging CalTrans interfered with plaintiffs' property rights.
      • Mediated disputes alleging nondisclosure of an easement 
      • Mediator for dispute between buyer and seller due to undisclosed conditions on the property 
      • Mediated various timber trespass matters

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS.

  • Honoree, Careers of Distinction Award, Sonoma County Bar Association, 2019 
  • Board Member, SEE International, 2014
  • Recognized as a "Top Neutral," Daily Journal Top California Neutrals List, 2013
  • Recognized as a ADR Northern California Super Lawyer, San Francisco Magazine, 2006-2013
  • Distinguished Mediator of the Year Award, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, 2004
  • President and Board Member, Legal Aid of Sonoma County, 2010-2012
  • Frequently requested lecturer on ADR and civil litigation
  • ADR training includes the Advanced Mediation Training Program at the Pepperdine University Institute for Dispute Resolution, the National Association of Securities Dealers and California State Bar ADR Roundtables
  • "Gack's Got the Knack for Settlement," ADR Profile, Daily Journal, August 10, 2012

Background and Education

  • JAMS, 1996-present
  • Private practice emphasizing alternative dispute resolution services, 1994-1996
  • Founding and managing partner, James, Gack, Bernheim and Hicks, Santa Rosa, 1982-1994
  • Judge pro tem, Sonoma County Superior Court, 1983-present
  • J.D., Pepperdine University, 1976
  • B.A., Anthropology, Cal. State University, Dominguez Hills, 1973


This page is for general information purposes.  JAMS makes no representations or warranties regarding its accuracy or completeness.  Interested persons should conduct their own research regarding information on this website before deciding to use JAMS, including investigation and research of JAMS neutrals. See More

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