Academy Member Inducted 2014

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Sheldon J. Stark, Mediator, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Sheldon J. Stark

Mediator & Arbitrator
2531 Jackson Ave, Suite 102
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Tel: (734) 417-0287
Fax: No Fax
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Recognized to Michigan Chapter for Mediation Other ADR Services: ADR Training/CME, Discovery Referee, Early Neutral Evaluation, Facilitation & Systems Design, Fact Finding, Med-Arb, Mini-Trial Judge, Special Master
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  • Practice Commenced: 1985
  • Total Mediations (as of Nov 2022): 1000
  • Total Arbitrations (as of Nov 2022): 25
Practice Percentages


Shel Stark has extensive experience litigating employment, commercial, business, personal injury, and insurance disputes in both state and federal court, before administrative agencies and pre-filing. He began mediating and arbitrating in the mid-1980s, handling a wide variety of cases. He manages both mediation, case evaluation and arbitration with skill, efficiency and sensitivity.

Shel has received extensive training. After years of “on-the-job” experience, he attended his first 40-hour hands-on mediation training in 1999 and has since been appointed to court lists in Kent, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne Counties. Since his appointment, he attends advanced mediation training two and three times per year to stay current, add new skills, and gain fresh insight for his “tool kit” of mediation techniques. Since 2002, Shel has been one of ICLE’s highest rated trainers in both basic and advanced mediation programs helping over a thousand trainees to gain or enhance their mediation skills.

Shel was appointed a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law from August 2010 to May 2012, where he taught Pre-Trial Litigation, Advanced Pre-Trial Litigation and the Mediation Clinic.  From 1988 to 2010, he served on the faculty of the Harvard Law School Trial Advocacy Skills Workshop.  He left full time teaching at UDM to focus on his ADR practice in 2012.  

Previously he was employed by ICLE, the Institute of Continuing Legal Education.  From 1999 to 2005 he was Director of Eduction and from 2005 to 2010, he was Director of Specialty Programs. During his time at ICLE, his programs earned six ACLEA's Best Awards for quality including the Advanced Negotiation & Dispute Resolution Institute, 40-hour, hands-on, general civil mediation training, Business Boot Camp, Litigation Boot Camp, the Mediator Forum and the Mediator Master Class.  

From 1977 to 1999, Shel was a partner in the firm of Stark and Gordon specializing in employment discrimination, wrongful discharge, commercial, civil rights and personal injury litigation, including police misconduct cases.  He was listed in Best Lawyers in America from 1987 to 2000 when he left practice.  

He has chaired the Fund for Equal Justice, the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar, The Employee Rights Group of the American Trial Lawyers Association and the Employment Law and Intentional Tort Sub-Committee of the Michigan Standard Jury Committee.  He co-chaired the Litigation Committees of the Metro Detroit and Michigan Branch of the American Civil Liberties Union.  

He has served as a Hearing Referee for the Michigan Department of Civil Rights, a panel chair of the Michigan Attorney Discipline Board and a Case Evaluator in Wayne and Oakland Counties.

Shel has received several honors including the ACLU's Bernard Gottfried Bill of Rights Day Award in 1999, the Distinguished Service Award from the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan in 2009, the Michael Franck Award for Contributions to the Bar from the State Bar Representative Assembly in 2010 and was listed in Dbusiness Magazine as a Top Lawyer in 2012 and 2013.  He received the George Bashara, Jr. Award from the ADR Section Chair "For Exemplary Service to the Section" in 2015.

Case Experience

  • ADA Disability
  • Automotive
  • Business Dissolution
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Commercial/Business
  • Contract Disputes
  • Discrimination
  • EEOC
  • Employment
  • Entertainment Sector
  • Family Businesses
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Labor/Unions
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Libel & Slander
  • Local Govt./Municipalities
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Nursing Homes
  • Partnerships
  • Personal Injury
  • Police
  • Premises Liability
  • Probate
  • Professional Fees
  • Professional Liability
  • Professional Malpractice
  • Professional Negligence
  • Public Policy
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Shareholder Disputes
  • Telecommunications
  • Torts
  • Trademarks/Patents
  • Unfair Competition
  • Wage & Hour/FMLA
  • Wrongful Death


  • J.D., University of Detroit School of Law, 1973, Magna Cum Laude.
  • B.A., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 1966
  • Completed 40-hour Facilitative Mediation Training, Oakland Mediation Center, October 29, 2000.
  • Completed 20 hour Training for Mediator Training, Community Dispute Resolution Program, October 12-14, 2000, State Court Administrative Office.

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Distinguished Fellow, International Academy of Arbitrators since 2015
  • Fellow, National College of Labor and Employment Attorneys as a Neutral since 2014
  • Member, Professional Resolution Experts of Michigan (PREMI) since 2013.
  • State Bar of Michigan (Member, Labor & Employment Law Section Council, 1987-93; Treasurer, 1995; Secretary, 1996; Vice-Chairman, 1997; Chairman, 1997-98; member, Constitutional Law Committee, 1997 to 1999)
  • American Arbitration Association, Arbitrator, Employment Panel; Mediator, Employment Panel
  • American Bar Association (Labor and Employment Law Section; Individual Rights Member, Equal Employment Opportunity Committee)
  • Approved Circuit Court Mediator, Wayne, Oakland, Washtenaw & Kent Counties, 2002.
  • Wayne County Mediation Tribunal, Case Evaluator, 1983 to date
  • National Employment Mediation Services, ADR Panelist, and member, Advisory Panel.
  • American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan Metropolitan Detroit Branch, Vice President, 1995-96, 1996-97, 1997-98; 1998-99; 1999-2000; Executive Board Member from 1982; Delegate to State Board 1994-1997; Alternate, 1998-1999; member 2004; Co-Chair, Lawyer’s Committee, Detroit Metropolitan Branch, 1995-99; member, Lawyer’s Committee, ACLU of Michigan.
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America Member, Employment Section Advisory Committee 1990 to date; Chair, Employment Law Section, 1990-91; Publications Committee, 1996 to 1999.
  • Attorney Discipline Board - Chair, Livingston County Attorney Discipline Panel #1.
  • Detroit Bar Association
  • Employment Panel Arbitrator, American Arbitration Association
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: Member, Advisory Board Mediation Program, Detroit District Office 1997 to 2005.
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Fund for Equal Justice 1977 to 2003; Secretary 1980-1995; Chair, 1995 to 2003.
  • Michigan Supreme Court Committee on Standard Jury Instructions
  • Chair, Intentional Tort and Employment Law Subcommittee 1985 to date; full member of Committee 1996 to 2002.
  • Michigan Trial Lawyers Association Executive Board 1996 to 1999; member, Employment Discrimination Committee; Co-Chair: Education Committee 1997 to 1999, Treasurer, 1999.
  • National Lawyers Guild Detroit Chapter, President, 1992-94; Executive Board member 1980 to 1996.
  • National Employment Lawyers Association Member
  • Annual Advocacy Institute, Ann Arbor: Participant, 38th (1987), 42nd (1991), 47th (1996).
  • Michigan Department of Civil Rights, Hearing Referee, 1985 to date.
  • Oakland County Bar Association, Case Evaluator, 1996 to date
  • Very Special Arts Michigan, Executive Board Member, 1994-1998

Rates Information

$320.00 per hour

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