David Zacks

David M. Zacks, Esq.

JAMS Mediator and Arbitrator

Case Manager
Salvador Sauceda Guzman
T: 202-533-2024
F: 202-942-9186
1155 F Street, NW, Suite 1150, Washington, DC 20004


David M. Zacks, Esq. is a full-time JAMS neutral focusing on health care industry disputes, catastrophic personal injury matters, and business/commercial disputes. David has garnered extensive experience in these areas throughout his distinguished legal career as a trial lawyer and neutral spanning 50 years. He is renowned for his natural ability to bring people together and build trust to get to the heart of difficult issues.

Before joining JAMS, David was a founding partner at Knox & Zacks, which later merged with Kilpatrick Townsend, an international firm based in Atlanta. While a partner at Kilpatrick, David served on the firm’s executive committee, chaired the health and life science section, as well as the firm’s complex litigation section. Additionally, he served as National Chair of the American Cancer Society from 2002-2003 and has served on several boards at a notable medical institution.

As a neutral, he has resolved disputes throughout the country involving various players in the health care industry, including major health care systems, companies providing ancillary services, nursing homes and long-term care facilities. He has worked on payor-provider disputes and various claims involving insurance coverage and companies.

David has successfully settled many catastrophic personal injury cases drawing not only on his legal background working on these matters as an advocate, but on his skills as a mediator and his ability to connect with the parties. Best known for his commitment to the process, through truly listening and evaluating the merits of his cases, David is able to consistently bring parties to resolution in these highly complex disputes.

ADR Experience and Qualifications

  • Evaluated, settled and arbitrated numerous complex cases, including multi-party cases and class actions
  • 45 years as a trial lawyer for both sides of the bar, using ADR as a means of settlement from the early 1990’s
  • At Kilpatrick Townsend, chaired Health and Life Sciences and Complex Business Litigation sections, co-chaired Native American practice group with Ambassador (Ret.) Keith M. Harper
  • Captain and certified military judge in JAGC, 1967-1971

Representative Matters

Health Care
  • Successfully resolved a multimillion-dollar billing dispute between a major insurance carrier and hospital system
  • Mediated and arbitrated wrongful death action against providers as well as nursing homes and hospitals
  • Handled disputes involving credentialing issues and privatization of state health care systems
  • Resolved disputes between a hospital system and a medical billing vendor
  • Handled the partnership dissolution of a health care practice
  • Successfully resolved employment matters involving health care providers, including whistleblower cases, matters alleging billing improprieties against providers, personal misconduct and medical malpractice claims against hospital personnel and employee discrimination claims
Catastrophic Personal Injury
  • Mediated a number of wrongful death actions, including a high-profile matter at a public sporting event
  • Resolved severe burn cases involving product liability issues
  • Handled personal injury matters alleging premises liability at various locations including airports and other public areas
  • Mediated aviation matters that resulted in catastrophic injury and death of passenger
  • Mediated many professional negligence cases including medical malpractice claims
Other ADR Experience
  • Served as principal negotiator during a critical phase of litigation on behalf of 500,000 Native Americans in a case involving the government’s mismanagement of trust lands and accounts for over a century, resulting in a multibillion-dollar settlement
    • Founded and led a Native American law practice group
  • Handled various breach of contract issues, including proximate cause and damages, dissolution of business and bankruptcy
  • Handled many employment cases alleging wrongful termination, harassment and discrimination
  • Resolved employment matters involving key executives at commercial businesses and law firms
  • Successfully mediated a licensing dispute between a nationwide restaurant and casino chain and a gaming company
  • Handled a case involving an art collector and an art preservation foundation
Completed Virtual ADR training conducted by the JAMS Institute, the training arm of JAMS. 

  • Served as National Chair of the American Cancer Society, 2002–2003
  • Board Member, Advisory Board for Regenerative Medicine at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, 2018–2021
  • Member, American College of Civil Trial Mediators, 2011–present
  • Immediate Past Chair, Society of International Business Fellows, 2020–2022
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America for Alternative Dispute Resolution, 2014–2022
    • Health Care Law and Personal Injury Litigation categories, 2014–2019
  • Georgia Trend's "Legal Elite" for Personal Injury Law, 2013–2014
  • Named "Atlanta Lawyer of the Year" in the area of Mediation by The Best Lawyers in America, 2013
  • Chair, Kilpatrick Townsend Complex Business Litigation, 2007–2010
  • Co-Founder & Chair with Keith Harper, Former Native American Ambassador, Kilpatrick Townsend Native American Practice Group, 2006–2009
  • Wake Forest University Distinguished Alumni Award, 2004
  • Georgia Bar Community Service Award, 2003
  • Atlanta Bar Palmer Ansley Leadership Award, 2003
  • Chair, Kilpatrick Townsend Health and Life Science Section, 1994–2002
  • Founding Member of the Georgia Academy of Mediators and Arbitrators
  • Georgia "Super Lawyer" in Alternative Dispute Resolution and Litigation Law by Super Lawyers magazine
  • National Register’s Who's Who in Executives and Professionals
  • Former co-chair of Wake Forest Law School Board of Visitors
  • Captain and certified military judge in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps of the United States Army, 1967–1971
  • Founding Neutral, Zacks Resolution, LLC, 2015-2017
  • Partner, Kilpatrick Townsend, 1994-2015
  • J.D., Wake Forest School of Law, 1967
  • B.A., with honors, Wake Forest University, 1964

Counsel Comments

    • “David was such a pleasure. His guidance and support were much appreciated as we worked to gain resolution today and did just that. I hope our paths cross again in the future.”
    • “David Zacks is one of the finest human beings I’ve ever met and among the most able lawyers I ever worked with in my 38 year career as a lawyer. He’s smart, practical, and has a personality which wins confidence from all who encounter him in personal or professional contexts. He's great at bringing adverse parties together with the best results and least friction of anybody I’ve ever worked with."
    • “David understands both Federal Indian Law and the various equities involved in cases involving Tribal nations. He is also unmatched in his ability to find novel approaches and innovative solutions to challenging problems and stubborn conflicts. I think he would be an extraordinary asset as a neutral in nearly any matter and particularly involving Federal Indian Law.”
      - Amb. (Ret.) Keith M. Harper
    • “David, many thanks to you and all of your work in helping to get this resolved. I am quite sure it would not have happened without your involvement and considerable wisdom and skills. It is a real specialty and talent to mediate successfully, and you have mastered the art. My clients are quite complimentary of you as well and appreciate your involvement.”
    • “David, thank you for your help resolving this dispute. You certainly did yeoman’s work helping us reach a settlement. It was a pleasure working with you and we will certainly keep you at the top of our list to mediate future disputes.”
    • David Zacks is the consummate neutral. An accomplished trial lawyer who has represented plaintiffs and defendants in both the largest of class cases and as individuals, David has the smarts, experience and personal charisma needed to resolve the most vexing of matters.”
    • “I am so thankful we were able to keep everyone moving toward a good result. That would not have been possible without [David’s] patience and candor, or without each of us having complete confidence in [him]. I think the lesson for anyone in a commercial dispute headed to mediation is that when you see good people on the other side and you have a great mediator, never let the parties leave the mediation table without a settlement. I shudder (literally) to think about the alternate paths our clients could have taken and am very grateful for [David’s] efforts on this matter. I very much appreciated [David’s] personal involvement and approach to this matter.”
    • “Thank you for your skilled assistance today. I look forward to working with you again in the future.”



Practice Areas

  • Business/Commercial
  • Class Action/Mass Tort
  • Employment
  • Health Care
  • Indian Law
  • Insurance
  • Personal Injury/Torts


Available nationwide


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