News & Events

Fall Virtual Conference Sponsorships

VMN is seeking sponsors for this year's Fall Virtual Conference, "Building Bridges," scheduled from Sept. 20-Oct. 1.  Will you join us in making the conference a success? 

2021 Sponsorship Flyer FINAL

Announcing New Membership Categories

If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that we need to be adaptable, innovative and connected.  To that end, the Virginia Mediation Network, Virginia’s membership organization for ADR practitioners, has introduced new membership categories, with accompanying discounts, to connect more people to the VMN family. 

Along with VMN’s Enhanced ($200), Basic ($150) and Student/Newly Certified ($25) memberships, the following new membership categories have been added.

Institutional Membership: $500.00

An institutional member represents an interest group, an institution of higher education, or a governmental institution.  Institutional Membership includes membership benefits for five individuals associated with the institution and use of the VMN logo.  Additional memberships are $100 each. 

Community Mediation Center Membership: $225.00

Community mediation center membership is for Virginia’s non-profit ADR centers.  It includes membership benefits for three individuals associated with the centers.  (Centers are encouraged to provide at least two of the memberships to center volunteers.)

Community Mediation Center Volunteer: $75.00

This is a discounted Basic Membership for individuals who serve as an unpaid volunteer at a Community Mediation Center in Virginia. 

VMN memberships can begin at any time during the year to receive a full year’s worth of benefits. 

To join or renew your VMN membership click here and go to “Join Us” at the bottom of the page.

These new categories qualify for VMN’s basic benefits, including

  1. Networking opportunities with attorneys, mediators, other ADR and service providers (discounted conferences)
  2. Marketing opportunities with attorneys, mediators, and other ADR providers (“Find a Mediator” listing on the VMN website, discounting advertising in conference programs and use of the VMN member seal)
  3. Discounted ADR education/continuing education with mediator continuing education credits (conference sessions and webinars)
  4. Representation and liaison for mediation issues with the VA Legislature, VA Courts, VA Bar Association and Virginia State Bar (Joint ADR Committee), Universities and more
  5. Discount of $50 for MC3 Certification
  6. Opportunities to help chart the future of ADR in Virginia by serving on VMN committees and/or Board of Directors.

As the Virginia Mediation Network we can chart the exciting future of alternative dispute resolution in Virginia.  We hope you and your organization will join us.

Join Us for a Members Only Town Hall Meeting on June 1

The Virginia Mediation Network is inviting all active members to a Town Hall Meeting on Tuesday, June 1, 2021, at 3 p.m.  The purpose of the meeting is to share information and to engage in some “perspective taking” with members.  Pam Struss, the President of VMN, will lead the discussions.  

We’d like to “check-in” with you and see if there’s anything we can do to assist you. Due to the implications of COVID-19, some of you have faced challenges in providing conflict management services.   We’d love to hear about the measures you’ve taken or planned to promote resiliency as we move forward in 2021. Other members could benefit from thinking through that challenge. 

Since last fall’s Annual Meeting, the VMN Board has been active in seeking to meet the needs of members and broadening the membership base.  We’ve also initiated the planning process for the 2021 Annual Conference.  It will be held between September 20 and October 1 and will be “virtual” which provides members with flexibility and gives us the opportunity to attract some presenters who may be some physical distance from Virginia.  We’d love to hear from you about presentations that would be beneficial to your professional development. 

If you would like to attend, please join the Zoom meeting using the link below.  We hope to see you there.

Zoom Invitation

Topic: VMN Membership Town Hall

Time: Jun 1, 2021 03:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 817 323 3512

Passcode: VMN2020

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GMU & NAFCM Offer Graduate Certificate in Contemporary Dispute Resolution

The Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University is working with the National Association for Community Mediation (NAFCM) to co-create the Graduate Certificate in Contemporary Dispute Resolution, and they are offering a discount to NAFCM members (see below for more details).  The certificate is intended to enhance the mediator’s skills at initiating, educating, and facilitating processes that address conflict collaboratively, revealing opportunities to effect positive systems change. The system may be the family, the workplace, the neighborhood, institutions such as local government, public safety, education, or any setting where two or people connect.

The Graduate Certificate in Contemporary Dispute Resolution will provide space to explore the nexus between larger social structures that currently facilitate economic and racial inequalities, unequal access to justice and educational systems and our work as community mediators. This will be a time to sharpen your skills, within a small group setting, for:

  • analyzing the factors underlying disputes,
  • recognizing power differentials among disputants,
  • applying appropriate processes that will assist those in dispute to create choices that may revolutionize their conflict, and,
  • using mediation, negotiation, coaching and facilitation to assist people.

To strengthen their work, The Carter School is offering the certificate to NAFCM members at a reduced rate.  While NAFCM has four levels of membership (institutional, program, associate, student), to receive this benefit you must be a program member or associated with the community mediation center and volunteering at least 70 hours a year at the center.  Out-of-state NAFCM program members will save a minimum of $3,000 from the current standard on-line cost. NAFCM program members who are residents of Virginia will save a minimum of $1,700 from the current standard on-line instate cost.  Your estimated total credit hour tuition cost will range between $7,150 (if you already have your mediation certification) to $8,250 (if you need to obtain your mediation certification)!   The application fee will be refunded on the first semester’s tuition bill. 

You can learn more about the certificate program here: Certificate Program   
You can verify your NAFCM membership here:  NAFCM Verification

You can learn more about a NAFCM Program Membership for community mediation centers here ($200/year): Member Categories & Benefits - National Association for Community Mediation (

Please be aware that only up to 15 applicants will be accepted into this certificate program, and the deadline for Fall 2021 is May 15, 2021 (this Saturday!). So, if this is of interest to you, don’t hesitate!

George Mason logoNAFCM logo

2021 Fall Conference Call for Presentations

The Virginia Mediation Network is hosting the Annual Fall Training Conference September 20-October 1, 2021. The conference will be entirely virtual, and our theme this year is “Building Bridges” between people and communities.  

VMN is seeking proposals for 1-1.5 hour workshop presentations that would be of interest to conference participants.  Speakers will be offered a $50 discount on conference registration fees or a $50 honorarium.  Workshops on implementing Conflict Resolution in both Public and Private sectors are of special interest, however, all conference presentation ideas are welcome for review. To assist in thinking about topic areas, past participants have identified the following areas of interest:

Possible Session Ideas:

  • Navigating cultural, political, and worldview differences in mediation;
  • Intersection of social justice and conflict resolution tools;
  • Mediation techniques; 
  • Facilitating heated discussions involving difficult subjects
  • Conflict Coaching;
  • Careers in conflict resolution (beyond mediation and law);
  • Opportunities for conflict management and resolution; 
  • Mentoring;
  • Marketing and branding;
  • Technology and mediating online; 
  • Ethics in conflict resolution practice (must be 2 hours)
  • Effects of COVID-19 on laws;
  • Family mediation, including domestic violence screening, child support, and visitation’
  • Ombuds in organizations;
  • Arbitration demystified;
  • Raising the Bar-Advanced Mediation Certification-MC3.

Presenter proposals are being accepted until July 15, 2021.  However, we encourage you to apply as soon as possible so we can confirm continuing education credits for marketing purposes.  

The “2021 Call for Presentations Checklist” can be downloaded here: Newsletters & Downloads (  Please complete and return this form along with all requested documentation.  All forms are required when submitting the program proposal, as these materials are needed for the continuing education application process.

All materials should be submitted to Christy Brimmer, VMN Administrator, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or mailed to the address below.  Please scan in a signature copy of your CME application if submitted by email.   

VMN, P.O. Box 29007, Henrico, VA 23242

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Christy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (804) 316-5271.