John Kennedy

Hon. John W. Kennedy, Jr. (Ret.)

JAMS Mediator

Case Manager
Karla Adams
T: 213-253-9786
F: 213-620-0100
555 W. 5th St., 32nd Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90013


As a JAMS panelist, Judge Kennedy has mediated the following commercial cases to negotiated settlements.

Representative Matters

  • Attorney malpractice dispute
  • Business dispute between a jewelry wholesaler and retailer
  • Claim by an attorney for negligence against a bank for allowing an employee of the attorney to embezzle from him 
  • Competing claimants dispute to the estate of an elderly relative/friend
  • Computer distributor and a dot com start up dispute
  • Determination of responsibility for, and damages resulting from, destruction of jet airplane parts in a multi-million dollar warehouse fire
  • Dispute between member physician and an IPA
  • Earthquake insurance proceeds dispute between homeowners and a homeowners association
  • Employment dispute between an auto dealer and its general manager
  • Employment dispute between the founder of a computer software company and majority stockholders who terminated his services
  • Hospital dispute between its laboratory service provider
  • Insurance bad faith claims arising in the context of construction defect disputes
  • Insurance carriers dispute regarding coverage responsibility for a hotel fire
  • Many commercial landlord-tenant disputes
  • Mine operator and adjoining homeowners dispute regarding earth subsidence claims
  • Probate disputes between competing claimants
  • Product recall and damage computation and allocation regarding a product for human consumption nationally
  • Purchase agreement dispute between a national bank and its mergers and acquisition subsidiary
  • Real estate development company partnership dispute
  • Seller-purchaser real estate disputes
  • Termination of an exclusive foreign dealership agreement between a United States manufacturer and a New Zealand distributor including resolution of pending warranty claims and future warranty service responsibilities
  • Trade secret misappropriation dispute
  • Unfair business practice claims under B&P 17200 brought against an auto dealer relating to vehicle leasing agreements
  • Validity of life insurance coverage concerning the non-accidental death of a child
  • Water district and a mobile home park developer dispute
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS. 

  • Chair, California Presiding Judges, 1999
  • Dean, California Judges' College, 1992-1994
  • Bernard Jefferson Award, California Judges' Association, 1993
  • Associate Dean, California Judges' College, 1990-1991
  • Publications include: Personality Type and Judicial Decision Making, ABA Judges' Journal, Volume 37, No.3; California Evidence, Attorneys' Briefcase (co-author)
  • "Accounting for Success," Daily Journal, ADR Profile, August 13, 2010
  • Taught numerous educational programs relating to decision-making skills to about 2,000 judges nationwide and to 400-500 attorneys at various organizations including The Rutter Group, Association of Business Trial Lawyers, Federal Judicial Center, National Judicial College, American Bar Association, California Center for Judicial Education and Research, California Judges Association, California State Bar Association, Pepperdine Law School and Stanford University
  • Justice Pro Tem, California Court of Appeal, 1984
  • Presiding Judge, San Bernardino County Courts, 1997-1999
  • Judge, San Bernardino County Superior Court, 1984-2000
  • Judge, California Municipal Court, 1980-1984
  • Private Practice, 1963-1964 and 1968-1977
  • Deputy District Attorney, San Bernardino County, 1964-1968 and 1978-1980
  • J.D., Stanford School of Law, 1963 (Law Review); B.A., Stanford University, 1961

Counsel Comments

    • "Judge Kennedy is tireless, patient, amiable, never loses his ability to remain warm and caring. He understands issues really well. He is good at reading people. Judge Kennedy goes to a lot of trouble bending over backwards to get a fair result. He is up-front and extremely intelligent. He's a quick study."

      - Attorney specializing in Complex Civil Litigation
    • "All of my experiences with Judge Kennedy have been positive. He is friendly and has the ability to suck you in. He has tremendous experience with the San Bernardino Court and community. Judge Kennedy has a frank way of telling the parties what they can expect."

      - Attorney specializing in Complex Personal Injury
    • "Judge Kennedy is a nice person; he treats lawyers with courtesy, patience, diplomacy and tact. He's smart, knows what the issues are and quickly recognizes the strengths and weaknesses of a case. He doesn't use a saw to cut the baby in half. Judge Kennedy has the courage to make a ruling without worrying about his next meal ticket. He's not worried about being politically correct. He is the first judge that walks on water without getting his feet wet."

      - Attorney specializing in Complex Personal Injury (Product Liability)
    • "Judge Kennedy is very bright and a quick study. He is well versed in employment law. He is a caring person and is not afraid to let it show. He is very effective in sensitive and emotional matters.  He allows sufficient time for everyone. He is a proactive neutral and he gets the job done."

      - Attorney specializing in Employment Disputes




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