Maria Walsh

Maria C. Walsh, Esq.

JAMS Mediator, Arbitrator and Referee/Special Master

Case Manager
Gabrielle Thorp
T: 617-228-9124
F: 617-228-0222
One Beacon Street, Suite 2210, Boston, MA 02108-3106

Maria C. Walsh is available to conduct cases virtually. JAMS is equipped to provide virtual ADR services on a variety of online platforms, including Zoom, Microsoft Teams, WebEx, and more.


Maria Walsh's background as an administrative judge and litigator, combined with her experience in business, government, and non-profit environments, provides a breadth of perspective that contributes to her successful resolution of complex disputes. Since joining JAMS in 2000, Ms. Walsh has successfully mediated and arbitrated many employment disputes as well as commercial, construction, intellectual property, insurance, property damage, franchise, personal injury, and tort disputes. 

She works skillfully with employees, employers, and insurers or other stakeholders to achieve creative solutions to disputes that arise in the context of employment claims. Cases have involved highly compensated executives, salaried workers, hourly paid workers, public employees, and shareholders in close corporations. Employers range from huge multi-national corporations to small non-profits, and all levels of government. 

Her years of experience as an employment lawyer and administrative judge supplement her expertise in employment law with creative ideas for practical solutions. Her patience and sensitivity, coupled with her knowledgeable realism about jury verdicts and court awards, make her particularly effective. She has resolved class, collective and individual actions.

Ms. Walsh has successfully mediated or arbitrated the following types of claims in a wide range of employment environments.

Representative Matters

  • Close corporation stockholder disputes: business valuation, shareholder compensation, non-competition, disclosure of confidential information, and breach of fiduciary duty to minority shareholder disputes
  • Compensation: disputes alleging violations of compensation contracts, commission agreements or plans, wage and hour laws, and collective bargaining agreements
  • Discrimination: disputes concerning age, race, gender, disability, national origin, sex, whistleblower discrimination and retaliation cases involving large and small corporations, non-profits, government agencies, both domestic and international. Successfully resolved highly sensitive sexual harassment cases, including counter and cross-claims.
  • ERISA: claims to benefits under qualified plans, breach of fiduciary duty claims, and claims requiring careful planning of settlement benefits (retirement, health, etc.) to ensure compliance with terms of qualified plans
  • Non-compete agreements, proprietary information, and trade secrets: successfully resolved disputes involving alleged breaches of non-compete agreements, disclosure of proprietary information or trade secrets, and alleged discriminatory retaliation or defamatio
  • Whistleblower protection claims: both state and federal act claims involving financial services industry, medical services and device industries, and others
  • Other statutory claims: successfully mediated cases involving claims involving Family Medical Leave Act, Civil Rights Act, anti-discrimination laws of various states and localities, as well as claims implicating civil service laws, workers' compensation laws, etc.
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS. 

  • Moderator, An Insider’s Look at Alternative Dispute Resolution, February 2016
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2014-2022
  • Admitted to practice, Massachusetts and District of Columbia Bars and several Federal Districts
  • Massachusetts Bar Association, Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee, Co-Chair (2009-2010)
  • Massachusetts Bar Association, former Labor and Employment Law Section Chair, Governance Task Force, Access to Justice Committee Chair
  • Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers Hearing Committee Member, (2002-2010)
  • Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association, Board of Directors (2002-2004)
  • Supervising Editor and contributing author: Ensuring Equal Justice, Addressing Cultural and Linguistic Differences in the Courts of Massachusetts, 1996
  • Editor-in-Chief and contributing author, A Judicial Guide to Labor and Employment Law, 1990, and First Supplement, 1993
  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Law, University of Dayton School of Law, Dayton, OH, 1992
  • Chairman or Member various non-profit organization Boards of Directors
  • Special Master, Asbestos Litigation, Massachusetts Superior Court (2002-current)
  • Of Counsel, Perkins, Smith & Cohen, LLC, Boston, MA (2000-2001, part-time)
  • Vice President, Plymouth Rock Assurance Corp., Boston, MA (1993-1999)
  • Chairman and Commissioner, Massachusetts Labor Relations Commission, Boston, MA (1983-1993)
  • Trial Attorney, National Labor Relations Board, Washington, D.C. and Boston, MA (1978-1983)
  • J.D., New York University School of Law (Root-Tilden Scholar) 1978
  • A.B., Vassar College/M.I.T. 1973

Counsel Comments

    • “[W]ithout question, the most effective mediator I have ever encountered. Maria possesses seemingly infinite patience and is the consummate diplomat, but she is also not afraid to be direct when necessary to drive a point home. She is able to quickly win the trust and the respect of all parties. Near-miraculous settlements are often the result.”
      - Boston area Partner, Labor, Employment & Benefits Practice Chair
    • “Maria is a terrific mediator who takes the appropriate amount of time to let both sides tell their story. In doing so she gains the trust of everyone on both sides. She is smart and just 'gets it.'”
      - Boston Litigator
    • “There are not enough good things to say about Maria. She is patient and knows just how to communicate with my clients. She makes them feel comfortable and part of the process. She gets the job done.”
      - Plaintiff Counsel
    • “On multiple occasions, Maria has mediated settlements of cases that I considered unsettleable.  In more than one of those, I had still considered the case unsettleable at 3 pm the day of the mediation. She has the highest emotional IQ of just about anyone I’ve ever met.” 
      - New York Counsel
    • “We use Maria for our thorniest matters and she has always helped us resolve them in mediation. She takes the time to learn the matter and to build a rapport with the client (both sides, I am confident; no “judging” and proclaiming a settlement amount), spots leverage points that we may not even have flagged, and gently but firmly points out the strengths and weaknesses of cases, the risks, and the value of settlement. She is dogged (some of our mediations have gone into the wee hours), available for follow up consultations and assistance, and is the consummate professional. She’s fabulous.”
    • “Impressed with Maria Walsh's ability to grasp seemingly contradictory evidence, understand plaintiff distress, yet remain neutral and seemingly balance both sides objectives.”
    • “Maria Walsh is an extremely skilled mediator.”
    • “Our mediator, Maria Walsh, was respectful and compassionate with my client. She kept the parties moving without turning us against each other. I was not sure the case would settle. It was due to her excellent skills we were able come to a deal.”
    • “Maria Walsh was engaged, thoughtful, creative, and overall just great.”
    • “Maria Walsh was very effective.”
    • “Maria is amazing. She facilitated a settlement in a very difficult case where it did not seem likely. Her ability to understand and acknowledge the personal and emotional aspects of the parties while also honing in on the important legal issues is a special skill.”
    • “Maria Walsh did a remarkable job navigating the personalities in the dispute and defusing issues that could have negated settlement.”
    • “Maria Walsh was fantastic in getting the parties to settle a difficult sexual harassment matter involving multiple parties.”
    • “Maria Walsh's persistence was extraordinary and resulted in a settlement that we did not believe would be possible.”



Practice Areas

Available nationwide


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