About Us

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Personal Profile

I began my legal career as a federal judicial law clerk in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, working for the Honorable Charles W. Joiner. Having learned from the inside how a busy trial court works, I joined Dykema Gossett PLLC. It was there, where, for over 34 years, I tried jury and non-jury cases and litigated disputes for Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, and individuals alike.  The work spanned automotive, aircraft and industrial product liability, toxic torts, personal injury, business disputes, environmental cleanups, and intellectual property matters.  During my tenure at Dykema, I tried and litigated cases in many state and federal courts at every level, including the United States Supreme Court.
Over the last decade I’ve concentrated increasingly on mediating the kinds of civil cases that I typically litigated.  Building on over 30 years’ experience as a case evaluator in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb Counties while a trial lawyer, I was able to train and work extensively in civil, domestic relations, and elder care and probate mediation both as a volunteer for community dispute resolution programs and as a private mediator.  And, just so life doesn’t get boring, I teach Negotiation as an adjunct professor at the Michigan State University College of Law.
I call Ann Arbor, Michigan home; my wife, Robin, and I have been married for nearly 50 years and have three adult children and four grandchildren.  When not mediating or teaching, you can find me enjoying cycling, spinning, downhill skiing, golf, reading biographies, and playing with my grandchildren.

 

Education

Sacred Heart Major Seminary, M.A. Theology, 2008
Georgetown University Law Center, J.D. 1974
Boston College, A.B. 1969, summa cum laude

Training

Michigan Supreme Court Approved Mediation Training for General Civil Cases, 2003; Domestic Relations, 2009; and Adult Guardianship, 2008
Michigan Department of Education Approved Mediation Training for Special Education, 2010
Peacemaking Court Training Program, Washtenaw County Circuit Court, 2014
Michigan Supreme Court Approved Advanced Trainings in Alternative Dispute Resolution, 2004 – 2017
Professional Resolution Experts of Michigan, Mediation/Arbitration, 2012
Advanced Negotiation and Dispute Resolution Institute, 2003-2014
Basic Arbitration, 2015

 

Experience

Judge, ABA Regional Arbitration Competition, 2015, 2017
Chair, Alternative Dispute Resolution Section of the State Bar of Michigan, 2015-2016
Co-chair, Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, Washtenaw County Bar Association
Panel Member, Attorney Discipline Board, State Bar of Michigan
President/Owner, Basta Resolutions, PLLC, 2011 – present
Adjunct Professor, Michigan State University College of Law, 2011-present
Adjunct Instructor, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, 2011 – present
President, Dispute Resolution Center of Washtenaw and Livingston Counties, 2011 -13
Volunteer Mediator, The Dispute Resolution Center, 2008 – present
Volunteer Mediator, Wayne Mediation Center, 2004 – present
Case Evaluator, Wayne, Macomb and Washtenaw Counties, 1980 – present
Member, Dykema Gossett PLLC, 1976 – 2010
Law Clerk to Hon. Charles W. Joiner, United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 1974-76
Georgetown Law Journal, 1972 – 73; Editorial Board, 1973 – 74

Professional Associations

Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, State Bar of Michigan
Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, Washtenaw County Bar Association
Member, Professional Resolution Experts of Michigan, Inc.
Life Member, Sixth Circuit Judicial Conference
Association for Conflict Resolution
American Bar Association
State Bar of Michigan
Washtenaw County Bar Association
Admitted to Practice:  U.S. Supreme Court; U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal for the Federal, Sixth, and Seventh Circuits; U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan; the Eastern District of Wisconsin; State of Michigan

Publications and Presentations

“Food for Thought…And For Negotiation,” Oakland County Legal News, July, 2017
“The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: How We Create our Own Conflicts and How We Might Stop Doing So,” Oakland County Legal News, August, 2015
“Volunteer vs. Private Mediator: Can’t We Just Get Along?” Oakland County Legal News, vol. 87, No. 193, 2014
“The Right Mediator Can Be Vital To Your Success,” Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly, vol. 24, No. 13, 2010
“Mediating Outside the Box,” Presentation with Brian Pappas to ADR Section of Washtenaw County and to DRC Volunteer Mediators, Spring 2011
“When Case Evaluation Just Gets in the Way,” PREMi Newsletter, January 2009
Presenter On Mediation Ethics, Dispute Resolution Center, 40-hour Civil Training, 2013, 2014
Speaker, Faith in Dispute Resolution Roundtable, MSU Law School, 2011
Speaker, Michigan Defense Trial Lawyers Association, Emerging Issues In Commercial Litigation, 2009
Speaker, Washtenaw County Dispute Resolution Center, Drafting Mediation Agreements, 2015
Coach, 40-hour Hand’s On Mediation Training, ICLE, 2005, 2013, 2014-2017
Coach, Effective Legal Writing, ICLE, 2007

Awards

Best Lawyers in America, Environmental Law, 2010-11
Outstanding Service Award, The Dispute Resolution Center, 2011
Volunteer Mediator of the Year, Wayne Mediation Center, 2010
John W. Cummiskey Pro Bono Award, State Bar of Michigan, 2009 (nominated for death penalty representation and mediation)

 

dispute resolution
areas of service

business

Antitrust
Auto suppliers
Auto product liability
Business disputes
Class actions
Chemical and drug product liability
Commercial transactions
Copyright
Franchising
Environmental
Industrial product liability
Insurance
Intellectual property
Patents
Personal injury
Shareholder disputes
Toxic torts

personal injury/
negligence/
product liability

Auto negligence
Construction accidents
Fires, explosions, electrocutions
Toxic torts
Industrial products
Chemicals and pharmaceuticals
General negligence

 

family

Pre-Divorce
Divorce and Separation
Post-Judgement
Elder Care
Guardianship
Estate Distribution

Working with Joe Basta

BROAD TRIAL AND LITIGATION EXPERIENCE

Beginning as federal judicial law clerk in 1974, and after that for over 34 years with a large, Detroit-based firm, I have tried and litigated hundreds of state and federal lawsuits before judges and juries in the trial and appellate courts of Michigan, the …

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EXTENSIVE MEDIATION TRAINING

I took my first 40-hour mediation training for general civil disputes over a decade ago.  Since then my training has included mediation in domestic relations, adult guardianship, special education, and Native American peacemaking.

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UNIQUE MEDIATION EXPERIENCE

In addition to my private mediation practice I am a volunteer mediator for Community Dispute Resolution Program Centers in Washtenaw and Wayne Counties, winning awards for outstanding mediation work.

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