Praise for Lawyers as Peacemakers

Book cover

“In Lawyers as Peacemakers, Kim Wright has produced a meaty and readable resource on how an ethic of care can become a canon of legal practice…the end result should be a bench and bar that better serves society, and a legal profession composed of counselors, leaders, and peacemakers.”
—David B. Wexler, Professor of Law and Director, International Network on Therapeutic Jurisprudence, University of Puerto Rico, and Distinguished Research Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology, University of Arizona

“Lawyers as Peacemakers articulates a new vision of law. Wright draws us into a conversation about the foundational thinking that birthed our legal system and asks us to consider a more holistic and integrative approach to the practice of law, an approach that will ultimately transform the American legal system into one that is more human and life-affirming.”  
—MaryLynn Schiavi, Writer, Associate Producer, Host, and Narrator of the Emmy Award-winning “Matter and Beyond” television series

“Wright’s passion for high professional ideals shines on every page. If you teach law and want a book for law students, jam-packed with resources and uplifting stories, put it on your syllabus. If you are a practicing lawyer and have only 30 minutes a day to do something for you, then this book might just save your life.”
—Cheryl Conner, Founder, New Prospects Collaborative, former law professor and Asst. U.S. Attorney

“Lawyers as Peacemakers follows the ABA’s tradition of publishing cutting-edge books that meld the goals of helping lawyers develop practices that provide competent, profitable, client-centered services and increasing the public’s access to justice. Building on the new paradigm shift of increasing a consumer-oriented, nonadversarial approach as pioneered by mediation, unbundling, and Collaborative Law, Kim Wright challenges lawyers to encourage peace, healing, conciliation, and sustainable human relationships within heartfelt client connections and needed new service products. Perhaps most important, to prevent career burnout and encourage lawyer self-care, this book is a must read just for its tips how to balance important, stimulating careers while maintaining a meaningful personal and home life. This book can truly help make peacemaking your life’s work.—Forrest (Woody) Mosten, author of Collaborative Divorce Handbook, Mediation Career Guide, Unbundling Legal Services, and Complete Guide to Mediation, recipient of the ABA “Lawyer as Problem-Solver” Award, ABA Lifetime Legal Access Award, and 2009 ABA Frank Sander Co-Lecturer

 

“The legal profession is transforming before our eyes, moving from an 18th century to a 21st century jurisprudence that recognizes how human beings are wired biologically to behave, and that places the needs of clients squarely in the center of our efforts as lawyers.  In this emerging jurisprudence, as the overarching purpose of our professional work  shifts from winning  legal victories to providing meaningful conflict resolution services for our clients, what kind of person the lawyer is matters equally as much as the power of the lawyer’s intellect. 
When legal historians and sociologists begin writing the story of how this transformation of a profession was wrought, the publication by the American Bar Association of J. Kim Wright’s remarkable book will surely be seen as a defining event.  Wright devotes a chapter to describing important new vectors in the practice of law:  restorative justice, therapeutic jurisprudence, collaborative law, and other modalities.  But the heart of Wright’s information-rich book illuminates and provides guidance not so much about what lawyers do as about who we are and who we can be: emotionally and physically healthy, self aware and reflective professionals with a strong sense of values and ethics, working as humanistic conflict resolution specialists toward the highest purpose of the law—healing breaches in the social fabric.”
—Pauline H. Tesler, co-founder of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, co-editor of the journal The Collaborative Review, fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, author of Collaborative Law: Achieving Effective Resolution in Divorce without Litigation, and in August 2002, was co-recipient (with Stu Webb) of the first American Bar Association “Lawyer as Problem Solver” award

“The depth and breadth of Wright’s work cannot be overstated. As I grew into my position on the bench I attempted to research resources and like-minded colleagues, and it was no mean task. Wright pulls the information together skillfully, and envisions this tome as a tool in bringing integrity, balance and peace to the practice of law; I agree. And it is a tool both for the attorney, and for the judge. The practical guide she provides for the professional moving in that direction is icing on the cake.”—Kathryn Carter, Retired District Magistrate Judge, District Court of Cloud County, Kansas, and President, Renaissance Lawyer Society

 

“Kim Wright has crafted a balanced template of possibility for those lawyers who feel ready to bring an enheartened awareness into their lives and their work. This book points the way to a new paradigm for lawyers, one that is meaning-based and congruent with the burgeoning consciousness movement in society-at-large. It should be mandatory reading in law school and beyond. Wonderful.”
—Jeff Brown, LL.B., author of Soulshaping: A Journey of Self-Creation.

 

 

“By the time I had read the first chapter, I knew that this would be a book that I would keep with me at all times as an attorney.  And it is a book I will keep giving out to my attorney friends as well.”   

—Amanda Hibler, 2L, Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law, Arizona State University

 

 
“What do you call 50 lawyers on the bottom of the ocean?” A “very yesterday” bad joke, that’s what! In Lawyers as Peacemakers, Kim Wright has produced a meaty and readable resource on how an ethic of care can become a canon of legal practice. Some, like myself, will be attracted by its emphasis on Therapeutic Jurisprudence—humanizing the law through reliance on insights from psychology and related social sciences. Others will be attracted by the book’s holistic approaches and its spiritual side. The end result, however, should be a bench and bar that better serves society, and a legal profession composed of counselors, leaders, and peacemakers.”
—David B. Wexler, Professor of Law and Director, International Network on Therapeutic Jurisprudence, University of Puerto Rico, and Distinguished Research Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology, University of Arizona

 

 

“This book is well grounded, not “airy-fairy,” fluffy, feel good stuff. It has substance and is full of possibility. Kim Wright is a very strong example of a “Gravitational Core” of a conversation—whereby the conversations that constitute “restorative justice” etc. find her, and the more they find her, the more mass there is, and thus more conversations tend to find her. Gravitational Cores are the stewards and shepherds of conversations—much like a star starts is a mass of gas that gathers, builds mass, and eventually becomes something that brings light to the absolute darkness of the universe—or at least a portion of it—knowing that it is not the person that brings the light, but the conversation.”
—Scott Wolf, Performance and Leadership Consultant at Sunergos Consulting

 

“In Lawyers as Peacemakers, Kim Wright chronicles the expansion of the legal profession beyond adversarial assumptions and adjudicatory habits.  Kim shares numerous examples of how lawyers can make, and are making, positive differences in the world. Lawyers as Peacemakers is a breath of fresh air for a legal profession overdue for change.”
—James Melamed, co-founder of Resourceful Internet Solutions (RIS) and Mediate.com, founder of The Mediation Center in Eugene, Oregon, former Executive Director of the national Academy of Family Mediators, and professor of Mediation at the Pepperdine University School of Law’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution.

 

“When I met Kim Wright at the beginning of the new millennium, my work had felt for too long like I’d been sweating my way through the legal profession jungle trying to hack out an untraveled swath. I was practicing law using terms like “preventive intervention” and “client legal education” in an effort to minimize legal intrusions for my clients, when it seemed many around me were glad for them—and the billable hours they represented—to just get bigger.  Kim came into the jungle from a different direction, bringing the comforting relief of recognition, and her own sharp blade and determination to clear the trail. I learned for the first time I was not alone in my thinking.  Helping co-found Renaissance Lawyer Society with her was a privilege, and an opportunity to make the path wider and more definite. Reading Lawyers as Peacemakers and supporting its creation has been like watching a great symphony being composed. Turns out there is a harmony of voices in our profession—caring, committed professional lawyers who also understand that the work is not about issues or cases or parties, but about people, and how the law impacts and affects them. And Kim is committed to meeting them all and sharing their humanist approach with the world.  Kim’s brilliance and commitment to this profession has allowed her, often at great sacrifice, to assemble the first comprehensive look at how law is being practiced to heal and create peace among people.  I am grateful for the resources she has assembled, and am hopeful for the profession and the scores of lawyers to come who will benefit from knowing about them.” 
—Dolly M. Garlo, RN, JD, PCC is President of Thrive!!© Inc. (www.AllThrive.com) and Founder of Creating Legacy™ (www.CreatingLegacyNetwork.com)

 

“Wright’s book is a beautiful and palpable illustration that will bring a more dignified and effective approach to American jurisprudence. Reading this book will benefit us all and is a must read for lawyers, judges, clients and the general community, as reading this book enhances our humanity.”

—Sunny Schwartz, Esq, Program Administrator, San Francisco Sheriff’s Department and author of Dreams from the Monster Factory: A Tale of Prison, Redemption, and One Woman’s Fight to Restore Justice to All

 

“I knew the moment I met her that Kim Wright was ‘one of my people’.  This book just confirms for me that everything I thought I knew about her was true.  Kim is a true visionary with a real heart for justice. 
I highly recommend her book to anyone with a different vision of how conflicts can be resolved, using all of the intelligences and many alternative tools to bring about real and meaningful change in people’s lives.”

—Linda Warren Seely, Director of Pro Bono Projects, Memphis Area Legal Services, Inc.

 

“The legal profession is in a deep malaise, with practitioners experiencing increased dissatisfaction, distress, and burnout.  In this provocative book, a leading figure in the reform movement describes and illustrates the alternative modes of practice and related developments and techniques that have been emerging in recent years, and profiles
some of their leading innovators and practitioners.  Therapeutic jurisprudence, preventive law, holistic law, creative problem solving, such developing alternative dispute resolution  techniques as collaborative law and transformative mediation, restorative justice, problem-solving courts, unbundled legal services, legal coaching and others are brought to life.  An engaging book that can transform your practice and increase both professional and client satisfaction.”
—Bruce J. Winick, Silvers and Rubenstein Distinguished Professor of Law, Director, Therapeutic Jurisprudence Center, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Miami

 

“Kim Wright has compiled a treasure trove of ideas and wisdom for lawyers who want to use their heads and hearts to help clients in humanistic ways.  This book not only provides guidance for serving clients but, equally as important, also in helping lawyers make their own true paths in life.”
—John Lande, Isidor Loeb Professor and Director, LL.M. Program in Dispute Resolution, University of Missouri School of Law

 

“What would you like to know to enhance the ability of a lawyer to become a peacemaker? Well, Kim Wright, in Lawyers as Peacemakers, provides the answers, resources and inspiration to achieve that result.   Kim brings her first-hand knowledge of the subject from her extensive travels and her sharing of collaborative dialogues with those with special expertise. Kim’s approach is directed both to the external tools and the internal ones required to reach creative solutions. It is a joy to experience this rich book.”
—Stuart Webb, founder of collaborative law, has appeared on the CBS Evening News and in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and in August 2002, was co-recipient (with Pauline Tesler) of the first American Bar Association, “Lawyer as Problem Solver” award.

 

“Author-lawyer Kim Wright’s inspired book, Lawyers as Peacemaker, overflows with glowing stories of real lawyers who “took the road less travelled” and found that “it made all of the difference.” Wright may well be the Oprah of the Emerging Legal World; like the media star, she generously shares her own journey as lawyer and social entrepreneur, and then invites us to join her road trip across America to meet those who inspired her with their innovations in law practice, personal philosophies, and justice reforms. Wright’s passion for high professional ideals shines on every page. An entertaining book on trends in law practice trends is unique. This one, like a collection of precious short stories, can be enjoyed in a weekend, or in short doses. If you teach law and want a book for law students, jam-packed with resources and uplifting stories, put it on your syllabus. If you are a practicing lawyer and have only 30 minutes a day to do something “for you”, then this book might just save your life.”
—Cheryl Conner, Founder, New Prospects Collaborative, Boston, former law professor and Asst. U.S. Attorney

 

“In the last 50 years, there have been extraordinary shifts in science, technology and medicine, shifts that have prompted us to question our fundamental beliefs and perspectives. We now find ourselves experiencing a shift in the American legal system led by thousands of lawyers across the United States who seeking to more clearly define the true meaning of justice.  
Lawyers as Peacemakers by J. Kim Wright articulates a new vision of law and invites the reader to consider new ways of practicing law, utilizing not only the powers of intellectual reasoning, but the even more powerful characteristics of heart and soul. Wright draws us into a conversation about the foundational thinking that birthed our legal system and asks us to consider a more holistic and integrative approach to the practice of law, an approach that will ultimately transform the American legal system into one that is more human and life-affirming.”  
—MaryLynn Schiavi, Writer of the Emmy Award-winning “Matter and Beyond” television series

“In Lawyers as Peacemakers, Kim Wright uses her gifts of collection and connection to create and display a showcase of what being a lawyer is really about. For those who thought law school would be a great way to make a difference in the world but came out the other side unsure of how a J.D. really helps, this book is a must-read. For those who struggle to balance their fractured personal and professional selves, this book is a must-read. Kim has created a compendium, a hands-on guide, and, most importantly, a voice of acceptance for holistic law.”
—Gretchen Duhaime, J.D., Founder, Practicing on Purpose LLC