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Ivy S. Bernhardson, Retired Chief Judge, Hennepin County District Court, Joins JAMS in Minneapolis

Ivy S. Bernhardson, Retired Chief Judge, Hennepin County District Court, Joins JAMS in Minneapolis

Experienced corporate counsel and former trial court judge joins JAMS as arbitrator, mediator, special master/referee and neutral evaluator

New Panelist Announcement

Minneapolis – JAMS, the largest private provider of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services worldwide, is pleased to announce the addition of Ivy S. Bernhardson, Retired Chief, Hennepin County District Court, to its panel. Judge Bernhardson joined JAMS after more than 29 years of experience as a corporate counsel and governance expert, as well as 13 years as a trial court judge in the Hennepin County (Minneapolis) District Court, including four years as chief judge.

Judge Bernhardson has presided over criminal, civil, mental health and family law matters. Her diverse career includes significant nonprofit board leadership and governance responsibilities. She served as chair of the board of trustees for both Gustavus Adolphus College and Fairview Southdale Hospital. She served 12 years as a trustee of the Bush Foundation, as a director and vice chair of the Fairview Health System and as a director of the Greater Twin Cities United Way.

Based in the Minneapolis Resolution Center, Judge Bernhardson will serve as a mediator, arbitrator, special master/referee and neutral evaluator, handling accounting and finance, business and commercial, family law, health care, real estate and real property, and securities matters. She is available to conduct sessions in person (adhering to reopening guidelines), as well as virtually for attorneys and their clients across the country.

Judge Bernhardson is recognized for her effective and strong leadership abilities and her thoughtful approach to resolving disputes. Her extensive background and knowledge of the law, combined with her commitment to ADR, make her an excellent addition to the JAMS panel. - Chris Poole, JAMS CEO

Judge Bernhardson’s legal practice includes 22 years at General Mills, ending as vice president, associate general counsel and corporate secretary. In addition to running the corporate secretary’s office, she was lead counsel for the company’s complex financings, pension investments, SEC filings and many business acquisitions and divestitures, ranging from $2 million to $2 billion, including two public company spin-offs. She also counseled the company on compliance and ethics policy matters, risk management and insurance. She was the primary internal counsel for a lengthy complex captive insurance coverage litigation that included a reinsurance arbitration in Bermuda. She also spent time as a corporate lawyer at a large Minneapolis firm that is now known as Stinson. Immediately prior to taking the bench in 2007, she served as the first general counsel for the Hazelden Foundation, now known as Hazelden Betty Ford, one of the nation’s premier addiction treatment organizations.

“I’ve been helping people create order out of chaos in one way or another for my whole career—first as longtime in-house counsel, then as judge. Leading people to smart solutions is what I love, and it’s what brought me to being a neutral at JAMS

- Ivy S. Bernhardson, Retired Chief

Judge Bernhardson received her B.A., magna cum laude, from Gustavus Adolphus College and her J.D., cum laude, from University of Minnesota.

About JAMS – Local Solutions. Global Reach.

Founded in 1979, JAMS is the largest private provider of alternative dispute resolution services worldwide. JAMS successfully resolves and manages business and legal disputes by providing efficient, cost-effective and impartial ways to overcome barriers at any stage of conflict. JAMS offers customized in-person, virtual and hybrid resolution services locally and globally through a combination of industry-specific experience, first-class client service, the latest technology and highly trained mediators and arbitrators.

With a roster of over 400 neutrals and 29 locations, JAMS resolves thousands of the world’s important cases every year. JAMS neutrals are adept at managing the resolution process whether they are conducting in-person, virtual or hybrid hearings.

More information is available at, and you can connect with us on TwitterLinkedInFacebook and our JAMS ADR blog. To learn about diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives at JAMS, visit

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Media Contact

For further information, please contact:

Kristine Snyder

JAMS Director, Public Relations & Content 

+1 949-224-4614 (Direct Dial)

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