Irvine, Calif. – JAMS, the largest private provider of mediation and arbitration services worldwide, announced that San Francisco based neutral Lester J. Levy, Esq. has been preliminarily appointed as Chief Adjudicator of a landmark settlement between the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and thousands of Native American farmers. The USDA has agreed to pay $760 million to settle the Keepseagle class action suit, which alleged the federal agency’s farm loan programs discriminated against Native Americans. The settlement will be formally approved in Spring 2011.
“We are honored that Lester and JAMS have been chosen to play such an important role in the adjudication of this landmark settlement,” said Chris Poole, JAMS president and CEO. “It is a privilege for JAMS and our neutrals to serve in this capacity.”
“I am grateful for the opportunity to deliver an efficient and fair process,” said Mr. Levy. “It is a role I take seriously and look forward to working with all stakeholders.”
<P">As Chief Adjudicator, Mr. Levy will oversee the adjudication of all claims of the settlement. JAMS neutrals regularly serve as chief adjudicators for complex settlements. Lester Levy and JAMS bring a substantial amount of experience to Keepseagle as the adjudicators of previous high profile government settlements, including Pigford I, also known as the Black Farmers case.
About JAMS, The Resolution Experts
Founded in 1979, JAMS, The Resolution Experts is the largest private provider of mediation and arbitration services worldwide. With Resolution Centers nationwide and abroad, JAMS and its more than 250 exclusive neutrals are responsible for resolving thousands of the world’s important cases. JAMS may be reached at 800-352-5267.