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John Williams

John R. (Jack) Williams

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Case Manager
Lindsay Andersen
T: 408-346-0732
F: 408-295-5267
160 W. Santa Clara St. , Suite 1600 , San Jose , CA 95113

For more than 50 years, John R. (Jack) Williams has handled, discovered, negotiated, resolved and taught civil litigation as a trial lawyer, as a mandatory settlement conference pro tempore, as an adjunct professor of law and as a private neutral mediator in the Bay Area.

Since becoming a full-time mediator in 1999, Mr. Williams has successfully mediated thousands of cases. He mediates cases of all subject matters, including personal injury, priest and sexual abuse, wrongful death, employment, high-tech and intellectual property, real estate, construction defect, insurance and bad faith and cases with deep complexity involving multiple parties. 

Prior to becoming a neutral, Mr. Williams specialized in insurance defense litigation for 30 years, and he tried to completion more than 200 jury cases during his career as a litigator and the founding partner of three law firms.

Apart from his unrivaled trial experience and success as a mediator, Mr. Williams is noted for being fair, extremely knowledgeable about the law and its nuances, personable, funny and likable, tenacious regarding follow-up and exceptionally prepared.

Read counsel comments about Mr. Williams' skills and style as a neutral.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Full-time mediator since 1999, with a high success rate
  • Hundreds of hours of specialized mediation training, including at Harvard and Pepperdine law schools
  • Mandatory settlement conference judge pro tempore for Santa Clara County Superior Court from the institution of its pro tem program in 1974 to the present
  • Private settlement judge selected by attorneys for resolution of lawsuits before mandatory settlement conference, 1985 to the present
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution Panel, approved mediator, Santa Clara County Bar Association, San Francisco County Bar Association
  • Victim Offender Mediation Program, approved mediator for Santa Clara County Juvenile Probation Department
  • Thousands of varied cases since 1965 in settlement conferences, arbitrations and mediations as an advocate for clients

Representative Matters
Mr. Williams mediates cases of all subject matters, including major tort cases resulting in personal injury and wrongful death, as well as cases based in product liability, premises liability and negligence. Associated with those, he mediates insurance bad faith, insurance excess disputes and catastrophe fire subrogation recovery. He has resolved many cases in employment litigation, including race, gender and age discrimination and wrongful termination, as well as unusual mediation of priest and clergy abuse, elder abuse, sexual harassment and molestation.

Legal Teaching Experience

  • Adjunct professor of law, University of Santa Clara Law School
    Trial practice, 1970–1988
    California discovery and trial preparation, 1988–present
    Negotiation and mediation, 1997–present
  • Lecturer, Pepperdine University School of Law, Dispute Resolution Institute, “Mediating The Litigated Case,” 2000
  • University of California, Santa Cruz, Extension, Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Litigation Process
  • California Continuing Education of the Bar, numerous legal seminars with prepared written materials, including but not limited to such subjects as creating and implementing a discovery plan, preparation for and taking depositions, use and abuse of interrogatories, effective use of trial evidence, proving and evaluating damages, experts in litigation, ethical use of discovery, how to effectively arbitrate cases, the last l00 days before trial, negotiating personal injury cases and preparing for mediation
  • Hastings College of Trial Advocacy, lecturer; University of Santa Clara Civil Trial Skills Workshop, summer program; Santa Clara County Trial Advocacy College, Board of Governors, lecturer; numerous seminars and programs for Association of Defense Counsel, California Trial Lawyers Association, state and local bar associations, Practicing Law Institute and University of Santa Clara Law School

ADR Training and Certification

  • Harvard Law School Negotiation Program, 1999
  • Pepperdine University School of Law, Dispute Resolution Program, 1997
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution Certification Program, University of California Santa Cruz, 1995
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution: Commercial Mediation, sponsored by Santa Clara County Bar Association
  • Mediation Means to Solutions, University of California Santa Cruz, 1995
  • California Association of Defense Counsel, ADR Certification Seminar, Golden Gate University, 1994
  • How to Mediate Intellectual Property Cases, presented by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) of Geneva, Switzerland, 1999
  • Over 50 hours of negotiation training courses in the last five years from the University of California Extension, National Law Center of Washington, D.C., Pepperdine University School of Law, California Continuing Education of the Bar, Karrass Negotiation Program, etc.

ADR Professional Memberships

  • International Association of Insurance Counsel, Pre-Suit Mediation and Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee
  • Federation of Insurance and Corporate Counsel, Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee
  • Society of Professionals in Dispute Resolution, Member
  • Northern California Mediation Association, Board of Directors, former member
  • California Dispute Resolution Council, member
  • Williams & Williams Mediation; San Jose, CA; 1999–2017
  • Williams, Pinelli & Cullen, LLP; San Jose, CA; 1996–1999
  • Williams, Romanski, Polverari & Skelton; San Jose, CA; 1980–1996
  • Hession, Creedon, Hamlin, Kelly, Hanson & Williams; San Jose, CA; 1974–1980
  • Popelka, Allard, Williams, et al.; San Jose, CA; 1966–1974
  • University of Santa Clara Law School, Juris Doctor, 1965
  • University of Wales, Rotary International Fellowship in Law, 1962
  • University of Iowa, Bachelors of Arts, History, with Honors, 1960




    • Employment
    • Insurance
    • Personal Injury/Torts
    • Professional Liability


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