Hon. Rebecca Westerfield (Ret.)

T: 415-982-5267
F: 415-982-5287
Financial Markets

Judge Westerfield has been a full-time JAMS panelist since 1992 and has handled over 2,500 matters. She is widely perceived as an excellent mediator and has an extremely high settlement rate. She has arbitrated and mediated numerous complex securities and financial markets disputes involving large investment banks, securities firms, commercial banks, institutional investors, hedge funds and private equity firms. She is particularly adept at shedding light on complex underlying insurance issues that are often essential to the resolution.

In complex, multi-party financial markets and securities disputes, Judge Westerfield is known for her ability to design a process to bring the parties together in order to efficiently resolve the dispute. She quickly grasps accounting and financial concepts. She has the ability to read the personalities involved and then adapt the process to be the most efficient and effective for them.

Representative Matters

  • Multiple cases involving allegations of negligence and breach of fiduciary duty against bank officers and directors, including an eight figure case where the FDIC alleged financial negligence of bank officers in connection with real estate loans
  • Numerous class actions, including securities and fraud claims for alleged misrepresentation by executives of public companies
  • Numerous claims by individual investors against brokerage firms, hedge funds and financial advisors alleging suitability, churning, lack of authorization and breach of fiduciary obligation with respect to trading in equities, options and derivative products
  • Breach of fiduciary duty of officers and directors of publicly traded companies
  • Securities cases involving directors & officers liability insurance
  • Dispute over investment banking fees
  • Backdated stock options disputes
  • Dispute over a brokerage firm's failure to supervise
  • Defamation cases
  • Cases involving issues of malpractice related to under-securitization
  • Privately held stock disputes
  • Misrepresentation/fraud claims pursuant to 10 (b)(5)
  • Suitability of investments disputes
  • Cases involving unauthorized transactions and trading allegations
  • Employment disputes in the securities industry including:
    • Discrimination (sex, race and age)
    • Sexual harassment
    • Wrongful termination/breach of contract

Honors, Memberships, and Professional Activities

  • Co-Chair, International Mediation Global Pound Conference (Northern California), 2016-2017
  • Presenter, USA-Italy Dialogue on Judicial Reform: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Rome, Italy, 2016
  • Presenter, USC-JAMS Arbitration Institute- Advanced Arbitration Academy, Los Angeles, 2016
  • Presenter, Admont International Summer School on Business Mediation, Austria, 2016
  • Presenter, Bangalore Chamber of Commerce, Conclave on Alternative Dispute Resolution, Bangalore, India, 2016
  • Recognized as an “ADR Champion”, National Law Journal, 2016
  • Participated in private mediation conclave sponsored by the Bangalore Chamber of Commerce, 2016
  • Presenter, ABA Asia Pacific Summit on Mediation, New Delhi, India, 2015
  • Presenter, Private Commercial Mediation Conclave, Bangalore, India, 2015
  • Trainer, ADR for Supreme Court of India (Delhi), High Court of Bangalore 2013
  • Active member, State Bar of California
  • Elected Fellow, College of Commercial Arbitrators
  • "Top Master," Daily Journal Top California Neutrals List, 2013
  • "Top California Neutral," Daily Journal, 2002-2011 (since the inception of the recognition)
  • Best Lawyer, Alternative Dispute Resolution Category, Best Lawyers in America, 2008-2016, and Northern California Super Lawyer, 2008, 2010-2016
  • Best Lawyer in the Bay Area, San Francisco Business Times, 2009
  • One of the Top Three Best Neutrals in the Bay Area, The Recorder, 2007
  • One of the 500 Leading Judges in America, by Lawdragon Magazine, 2006
  • Distinguished Mediator of the Year, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, 2003
  • One of the Top 10 Mediators in the Bay Area, The Recorder, 2002
  • Member, Advisory Council to the ABA International Human Rights Center, 2011-2014, and Advisory Board U.C. Berkeley School of Law, Human Rights Center, 2009-present
  • Member, National Association of Women Judges, International Association of Women Judges, ABA Women in Dispute Resolution Committee
  • Member, International Academy of Trial Judges, Northern California International Arbitration Committee
  • Presenter, International Summer School on Business Mediation, Admont, Austria (2006, 2010, 2012, 2014)
  • Chair of the Bar Association of San Francisco’s International Human Rights Committee, 2009-2011
  • Participant, International Human Rights Summer School, Oxford University-New College 2004
  • Member, American Bar Association House of Delegates, 1987-1991, 1996-2008
  • Board of Directors, Bar Association of San Francisco, 1994-1997
  • Chair, American Bar Association Section on Individual Rights and Responsibilities (now Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice), 1994-1995
  • Co-authored the ADR chapter of CEB's Wrongful Termination Practice 2ed. (1997)
  • Adjunct Professor, University of California Berkeley School of Law
  • Lecturer, Stanford Law School
  • "Enduring Optimism," ADR Profile, Daily Journal, June 28, 2013

Background and Education

  • Serves on ADR panel for the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of California
  • Appointed Judge, Circuit Court of Jefferson Co., Kentucky (court of general jurisdiction), 1987-1992
  • Admitted to Bar of United States Supreme Court, 6th and 9th Circuit Courts of Appeals
  • Masters in Liberal Arts, Stanford University, 2008
  • J.D., University of Kentucky, 1975 (Law Journal, National Moot Court Team)
  • B.A., University of Kentucky with distinction, 1972

Disclaimer

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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