Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Name and title: John J. “Jay” Welsh, executive vice president and general counsel Age: 66 The talking cure: JAMS is the largest private alternative dispute resolution (ADR) provider in the world, with revenues last year of about $99 million. It has 165 employees plus more than 200 retired state and federal trial and appellate judges who function as “neutrals,” hearing mediation and arbitration of complex multiparty business and commercial matters. JAMS had been handling an annual average of 10,000 cases from its Irvine, Calif., headquarters and 23 centers nationwide, but the number hit 30,000 recently due to a boost in class actions. In 1999, Welsh and 41 partners � three executives and 39 neutrals � bought the company from an investment bank. Daily duties: Welsh oversees the firm’s legal matters, quality control, risk management and ethics. One might say that he is somewhat tied to his job. “The telephone number on my business card is my cellphone number, he explained. “My job comes down to handling e-mails and messages that require immediate response regarding mediations and arbitrations around the country. I am constantly available for their questions � they may be out in the hall [in the middle of a mediation, awaiting an answer] . . . .Issues that can’t be handled at the local level come to my desk.” Welsh founded the JAMS Foundation, the largest provider of support to ADR programs in the country, which plans to distribute about $500,000 in grants this year. He guides both the foundation and JAMS Institute, which provides JAMS’ neutrals with continual training on ADR topics. He leads the JAMS initiative in international mediation and arbitration as a member of MEDAL, the International Mediation Services Alliance in Europe, and at the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre. Legal team: Welsh, based in Irvine, and Kimberly Taylor, the associate general counsel who handles both legal and administrative duties from the New York office, are the law department’s core. In addition, three attorneys work as full-time case managers. Welsh reports to Chief Executive Officer Steve Price. A lot of the in-house work involves motions to quash subpoenas of parties trying to make mediators and arbitrators testify in court, which they legally can’t do, since arbitrations are confidential. Outside counsel: “I don’t have a large budget to hire outside counsel,” Welsh said, but he does bring in small, competent local firms on occasion. “We hire small firms that won’t cause conflicts in the business we do nationwide. We don’t want to hire law firms who come to us for arbitration and mediation services.” Route to present position: Welsh earned a bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., in 1962, and a juris doctorate from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law in 1965. He practiced real estate, finance and corporate law for private firms until 1991, when retired San Francisco County, Calif., Superior Court Judge Daniel H. Weinstein, leader of the then newly formed JAMS office in San Francisco and a former Welsh law partner, brought him in as general counsel. Welsh served in that capacity until 1994, and as a JAMS mediator from 1995. He came back as general counsel and executive vice president after he and his partners bought JAMS. Career highlights: “As a young lawyer, you remember the excitement when you did your first big commercial real estate loan closing, your first big merger and acquisition. You thought it was about getting rich, but as a 40-, 50-year-old lawyer, you realize it’s about giving clients quality service.” In fact, “my 50s and 60s at JAMS has been the best. The big highlight was when 42 of us bought JAMS and took control of our own destiny, because then JAMS was in the hands of people who do it, rather than investment bankers who wanted it to be like Federal Express � the privatization of a government function.” War stories: Welsh has known parties to object to outcomes for rather unusual � and immaterial � reasons. “I once got a complaint that an arbitration award should be vacated because the arbitrator was wearing support hose and didn’t disclose the fact,” he said. “Another lawyer filed a motion to vacate on the ground that the arbitrator was under the influence of drugs � quote, popping pills, unquote � from a tin box all during the arbitration.” The lawyer “issued subpoenas in all of the pharmacies in the town where the arbitrator lived to find out which was his pharmacy, to find out what prescription he was on,” he said. “The pills turned out to be the JAMS mints we give away in a little tin box. When I moved to quash the subpoenas, I brought a box of JAMS mints to court.” Personal: Welsh and his wife, Rae Terry, have five adult children between them and four grandchildren. The Rockville Centre, N.Y., native enjoys working out and travel, especially to Paris and Italy. Last book and movie: The Traitor, by Stephen Coonts, and Avenue Montaigne. Welsh noticed that he had had lunch in the Bar des Th��tres bistro featured in the film while visiting Paris last Christmas, before he saw the film.

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.