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R. Wayne Thorpe
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R. Wayne Thorpe Esq.

Latest Insights
Upcoming Events
General Biography
Practice Areas
Civil Rights
Class Action/Mass Tort
Cybersecurity & Privacy
Employment Law
Entertainment & Sports
Financial Markets
Governmental/Public Agency
Health Care
Intellectual Property
Personal Injury/Torts
Professional Liability
Real Property
Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities
Background and Education

R. Wayne Thorpe, Esq. has been a full-time ADR neutral since 1998. He has served as mediator, arbitrator, facilitator, special master, and case evaluator in more than 2000 cases in at least 55 cities in 25 jurisdictions, including many high stakes and complex cases, class actions, MDL’s, and other large scale multi-party cases, and more than 500 arbitrations as sole arbitrator, panel chair, or party-appointed arbitrator. In December, 2017, Mr. Thorpe was honored as recipient of The Chief Justice Harold G. Clarke Annual Award, presented by the Georgia Supreme Court Commission on Dispute Resolution and the State Bar of Georgia Dispute Resolution Section, In Recognition of His Outstanding Contributions to Dispute Resolution in Georgia. He was previously named by the Best Lawyers in America publication as the 2020 and 2015 Atlanta Arbitration Lawyer of the Year and the 2012 Atlanta Mediation Lawyer of the Year, and he has been recognized by International Who’s Who of Commercial Mediation, Best Lawyers in America and Georgia Super Lawyers for many years.

Mr. Thorpe is Past Chair of the ABA Dispute Resolution Section, and he has been a leader in ADR ethics and other policy matters both nationally and in Georgia for many years. He has also served as an adjunct professor and guest presenter in ADR courses in several law schools. Before he became a full-time neutral, Mr. Thorpe was a litigation partner in a large Atlanta law firm.

R. Wayne Thorpe is no longer accepting cases. If you would like to connect with Mr. Thorpe about the right panelist for your matter, please contact his case manager.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Mediation and arbitration of employment disputes between Am Law 100 firms and withdrawing/retiring partners involving age and gender discrimination, accounting, retirement agreement, and non-compete issues
  • Mediations and arbitrations of disputes among physicians and between physicians and hospitals in several states
  • Mediations of False Claims healthcare government and qui tam cases in Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and California
  • Arbitrations and mediations of healthcare reimbursement cases in Georgia, California, DC, Florida, Idaho, Louisiana, New Mexico, Ohio, Tennessee, and Texas
  • Case evaluation in dispute in multi-million dollar, long-term contract between a North Carolina state agency and a global technology services provider
  • Facilitation of Feasibility Study among several PRP’s, US EPA and Ga EPD at Superfund site
  • Mediation of US DOJ/US EPA Clean Water Act case against road contractor and state highway department
  • Arbitration of multi-party case between bank and 75+ borrowers involving disputes over tens of millions of dollars of loans in North Carolina
  • Mediation of construction defect case involving major urban redevelopment multi-use project with tens of millions in claims involving owner, general, 10+ subs and 10+ insurers
  • Mediations of FDIC cases against lawyers, accountants, insurers, and bank D’s and O’s
  • Mediations and arbitrations in professional liability cases against accountants, lawyers, physicians and other healthcare providers, construction managers, and investment professionals
  • Party-appointed arbitrator in numerous cases, including post-acquisition accounting, sale of timber, insurance coverage, sale of printing services, governance and possible termination of an LLC, patent royalties, payor/hospital dispute,
  • Chair of arbitration panels:
    • Bankruptcy trustee case in Va. against Big Four accounting firm;
    • Fla. case against bank trust department for alleged mishandling of trust account
    • Dispute over terms of long-term supply contract for agricultural chemicals;
    • Hospital claim for reimbursement for ER charges from Medicaid payor;
    • Lease/Guarantee dispute in Ala. between hospital lessor and acquirer of hospital;
    • Contract dispute in Ky. about allocation of response costs at Superfund site;
    • Dispute in New Mexico between healthcare payor and psychiatric hospitals;
    • California case involving reimbursement dispute between payor and third party provider of medical services
  • Toxic tort case brought by employee against defense contractor for child’s heart defect allegedly caused by in utero exposure to chemicals in employer’s plant
  • Arbitrations of employment cases between private equity professionals and employer
  • Sole Arbitrator in Tennessee case involving buyout of minority owner of alternative energy developer
  • Sole arbitrator in $100 million claim in Florida by terminated CEO against Brazilian public company
  • Mediation in Louisiana of securities and fiduciary duty claims by quasi-public pension fund against various financial institutions relating to mortgage backed assets in high yield investment fund

Representative Matters

  • Business/Commercial
      • Hundreds of business and commercial cases, including antitrust, banking, bankruptcy, consumer, corporate/partnership/LLC's, energy, estates, financial services, franchise/dealership, health care, insurance, international, mergers/acquisitions, non-profits and churches, professional liability (including accountants, investment professionals, lawyers, and physicians) securities, technology, and real estate disputes
  • Construction
      • Mediations/arbitrations of construction, construction defect, and building products disputes on both private and public projects; professional liability claims against architects, engineers, construction managers; related insurance coverage issues
  • Employment Law
      • Class and collective actions; age, disability, gender, race discrimination; FLSA; sexual harassment; wrongful termination; employer disputes with senior executives; non-compete, non-solicit, and trade secret disputes; Sarbanes-Oxley; breach of fiduciary duty, theft of corporate opportunity; bonuses and stock options; law firm disputes with former partners; physician disputes with hospitals and practice groups; public company termination of CEO; whistleblower cases 
  • Environmental
      • Public and private environmental cases, including toxic torts; private and government CERCLA, RCRA, and other hazardous waste cases; Clean Water Act cases; Clean Air Act enforcement case; nuisance/trespass (pollution, water, air, noise, blasting, etc.); land use and development disputes; indemnity and other contract disputes arising from transfer of contaminated property; weather and climate related cases including storm water cases against builders, other property owners, and state and local governments; water rights disputes among riparian owners and a state agency; facilitation of technical discussions on Feasibility Study for largest Superfund site in Georgia; disputes about UST‘s and pipelines; disputes about landfills; co-facilitator in ex-urban county conflict over growth strategies
  • Financial Markets
      • Numerous bank disputes with customers, other banks, and insurers; lender liability claims; SEC enforcement cases including a case against a bank officer; securities and other claims against public companies and officers & directors, and related insurance coverage issues; claims against brokers and investment advisors; financial services employment disputes; multiple FDIC disputes including with bankruptcy trustee for a bank holding company, bank D’s & O’s, accountants, and bank lawyers; claims on financial institution bonds
  • Governmental/Public Agency
      • Cases with US DOJ and several US Attorneys’ offices, US HHS, EPA, FAA, FDIC, IRS, NPS, and SEC; several state Attorneys General offices and multiple state agencies in multiple states including education, environmental, Medicaid, tax, and transportation as well as state colleges and universities; local governments (including mayors, city councils, county managers and county commissions), city and county school boards, and airport, development, and hospital authorities; disputes between public agencies (e.g., city vs. county, state vs. local, or state vs. federal); SEC enforcement; federal and state False Claims; FDIC cases; federal/state environmental agency administrative and enforcement cases, including hazardous waste, clean water and clean air cases; riparian rights dispute with state agency; employment disputes with federal and state agencies involving senior managers; employment case involving state college employee; condemnation cases; federal, state and local tax disputes; environmental, construction, employment and tort claims involving state and local governments and school boards; mediations between cities and counties under Georgia Services Delivery Strategy Act; mediation of city-county dispute over allocation of Local Option Sales Tax Revenues; dispute among non-profit homeless shelter, city, university hospital and local businesses about closure of homeless shelter; dispute between school board, school board members, and construction manager concerning management of SPLOST funds for school construction; procurement and employment disputes with hospital authorities
  • Health Care
      • Federal/state Government and Qui Tam False Claims cases against hospitals, physicians, pharma, non-profits; reimbursement disputes in ten or more states, including class actions, involving payers, hospitals, physicians, pharmacies, and liability insurers; medical software trade secrets; dispute between hospital and records storage service provider; dispute between health insurers related to sale of book of business; employment and other business disputes concerning physician practice breakups; business and employment disputes between physicians and hospitals; IP dispute between university and pharma party; employment claims by pharma sales reps; insurance coverage for malpractice, medical benefits payments and other claims; disputes arising from sale of health care businesses; numerous med mal cases against physicians, hospitals, nurses, nursing homes; product liability claims involving drugs and devices
  • Insurance
      • Insurance coverage disputes involving financial institution bonds; D&O claims; environmental and toxic tort claims; construction defects; health care industry coverage disputes; IP coverage disputes; auto and homeowners; life, health, disability
  • Intellectual Property
      • Mediations and arbitrations concerning information technology, computers, networking, and software, including multiple disputes between sellers, creators, developers, etc. and their customers; medical, defense, financial, telcom, and other technology; TV, radio, music, and other entertainment cases; copyright, trademark, publicity, trade secret, patent, and other IP cases
  • Professional Liability
      • Hundreds of tort cases including product liability (drugs and devices, foods, autos, industrial equipment, military security system, etc.); professional liability cases against lawyers, accountants, financial professionals, construction managers, engineers, architects; fifty or more med mal cases against doctors, hospitals, nurses, and nursing homes; numerous serious wrongful death and personal injury premises and vehicular cases

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

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

  • 2017 Recipient of The Chief Justice Harold G. Clarke Annual Award, presented by the Georgia Supreme Court Commission on Dispute Resolution and the State Bar of Georgia Dispute Resolution Section, In Recognition of His Outstanding Contributions to Dispute Resolution in Georgia
  • Co-Author, What Is…ADR in Health Care Disputes?, ABA Book Publishing (Health Law Section), 2015
  • Identified by The Best Lawyers in America as the 2020 Atlanta Arbitration Lawyer of the Year
  • Identified by The Best Lawyers in America as the 2015 Atlanta Arbitration Lawyer of the Year
  • Identified by The Best Lawyers in America as the 2012 Atlanta Mediation Lawyer of the Year
  • Named in International Who’s Who Legal, Mediation; Georgia Super Lawyers; and The Best Lawyers in America for several years
  • ABA, Dispute Resolution Section. Section Chair, 2010-2011; Officer or Member of Section Council, 2001-2012; Co-Chair, ABA Task Force on Improving Mediation Quality, 2006-2008; Drafting Committee, Model Standards of Conduct for Mediators, 2003-2005
  • Liaison from DR Section to ABA’s Ethics 2000 Commission (providing testimony on the Model Rules of Professional Conduct provisions relating to mediation and arbitration), 2000-2002; Chair, ABA DR Section Ethics Committee, 1997-2002
  • Member, Georgia Commission on Dispute Resolution, 1997-2002, appointed by Supreme Court of Georgia
  • State Bar of Georgia, ADR Law Section. Chair, 2003-2004; Officer, 2000-2004; Executive committee, 2009-2012; Chair or Co-Chair, annual ADR Institute, 2000, 2003, planning committee, 2000-present; Atlanta Bar ADR Lawyers Section, past member, Board of Directors; Georgia Annual Arbitration Institute, Chair, 2018 and multiple prior years
  • Former Fellow, College of Commercial Arbitrators; Former Fellow, American College of Civil Trial Mediators
  • Adjunct Law School Professor, University of Georgia and Georgia State University, Alternative Dispute Resolution Courses, 1998-2004; guest presentations in ADR classes at GSU, Emory University, Mercer University, and John Marshall law schools
  • More than 150 speaking presentations to Bar and ADR professional groups in more than 20 states; faculty member ABA Annual Arbitration Institute, 2010-2012, 2016 (and Co-Chair, 2010); faculty member ABA Annual Advanced Mediation Institute, 2010, ’11, and ’13; dozens of articles and papers on ADR topics
  • Principal Benefactor, JAMS Foundation

Background and Education

  • JAMS, ADR Neutral, 1998-present
  • Litigation Partner and Associate, Alston & Bird, 1981-1998
  • Law Clerk to Chief United States District Judge Charles A. Moye, Jr., United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, 1979-1981
  • J.D., cum laude, University of Georgia Law School, 1979; Georgia Law Review, Research Editor
  • B.A., with distinction, University of Virginia, 1976
  • Wayne is married to Jane Thorpe, who retired as a partner at Alston & Bird in 2014. They have two adult children and three grandchildren. Wayne and Jane own a cabin in West Yellowstone, MT near Yellowstone National Park, where they flyfish and hike as much as they can.


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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