Spring 2021 Newsletter

Spring 2021 Newsletter

The MtMA regularly sends out information about mediation-related training through this newsletter, our website and our Facebook page. We are also working on arranging trainings to help members satisfy their continuing education requirements. If you know of any educational opportunities you would like us to share – or you have any requests for specific training – please email Pat at: mtmediation@mtmediation.org


There are several great training opportunities coming up in the coming weeks:

  • Mediators and People with Disabilities presented by Roberta Zenker and Rachel Bechtel with Disability Rights Montana March 5 from 12pm to 1:30pm. CLE pending with the State Bar of Montana. Approved from 1 hour CE for MtMA (Training is free)
  • Some on-demand training is continuously offered:
    • Collections Training presented by Paul Heihn of Northwest Collections and Katie Sadowski with HomeWord in Missoula.
    • Elder Mediation presented by LaDawn Whiteside
    • CDRC offers Zoom & DocuSign Training 

Please visit MtMA‘s website for further training information

MtMA Member Spotlight: Kathleen Andersen

Kathleen Andersen has recently relocated to Montana from Washington. She has been a Washington State Mediator since 2016 in personal and criminal law. She has been a journalist and investigative reporter for various media publications since 1967. Kathleen holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology/Criminal Justice from Central Washington University and a Master of Criminal Law from Columbia Southern University.

Letter from the President 

Montana Mediation Association started January 2021 with a training blitz. Paul Heihn with Northwest Collections spoke to us about collections on 1/7/21.  The training was recorded and can be viewed by contacting Pat Scott at mtmediation.org.  Pam Poon, Esq., CM/F and others provided training through the State Bar of Montana 1/20/21.  Topics were using features of Zoom that I have never seen before and using technology to mediate effectively.  Patrick Marsolek, CM/F offered a 6-week nonviolent communication course that concluded in February that was very pertinent to the mediation work we do. Both the Collaborative Dispute Resolution Center (CDRC) and Billings Mediation Center offered mediation fundamentals training for new mediators.  All of these trainings qualified as continuing education hours for mediators.

There are a variety of upcoming training topics available on the mtmediation.org website. Don’t forget that all Certified Mediators are required to participate in 15 hours of continuing education each calendar year.  Family and elder designated mediators are required to obtain additional specific training to maintain their designation.

The mediation centers in Montana need volunteers to mediate cases in the local court.  If you are new to mediation, enjoy mentoring, have some extra time, and/or want to polish up some skills, contact a center.  Of note, I recently observed a mediation with CDRC and have participated in mediations with Billings Mediation Center.  It exciting and very interesting to work with different centers and gain an appreciation for the similarities and differences of each center. No travel required since both centers are using Zoom.

MtMA In The News: The eviction moratorium continues to drive confusion and fill court dockets across the country.  In Montana you may have noticed many articles in newspapers talking about landlord tenant problems.  An article written and distributed to MtMA members, by email, was also provided to newspapers and housing organizations.  This article was picked up by Mediate.com and will be published by them as well.  As President of MtMA, I have provided training to two landlord/property management organizations in Great Falls since the beginning of this year.  For those of you that provide mediation in Great Falls and then surrounding area, the landlords are primed and ready for mediation assistance.

The election process at MtMA has started.  We are looking for mediators (associate and/or certified) that are interested in the mission and vision of MtMA. We want you to join the governing board. We are currently seeking nominations for several positions including secretary and treasurer.  I estimate that this is a 10 hour a month obligation.  Board members are friendly, supportive, and dedicated to making this organization the best that it can be, one day at a time.  If you want to grow your mediation business or want to engage with great people, board participation is a great way to get ideas and be integrated into mediation in Montana. It is permissible to self-nominate. Watch for emails from Pat Scott, Administrator about the election .

Save The Date:  A virtual membership meeting and training will be held by Zoom on 5/20/21.

Best wishes to everyone reading this.

LaDawn Whiteside CM/E

Administrator’s Report 

News from the Administrator:

Greetings! Here are some tips for getting into the MtMA website and doing your updates. To get into your account for the first time, your username is the email that you used when you signed up. Then select, ”I forgot my password” to set your password up. You can go into your account and update your contact information whenever you have a change so that MtMA can continue to keep in touch with you. Another feature available when logging into your account is that that is where you can upload a photo of yourself that will display with your contact information on the MtMA website. To do that, click on the profile of the person displayed in the upper right hand corner. That will open up, and you can upload your photo. After all changes, select the update button.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions at memberservices@mtmediation.org.


MtMA Donations

We would be most grateful if you would consider providing a donation to MtMA. If you are able, please consider a donation of $100.00 to sustain the MtMA. We will gladly keep you updated regarding our progress through emails and the electronic newsletter during the coming year. MtMA is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt nonprofit and all donations are tax deductible.

Please contact the MtMA board, or our Administrator, Patt Scott either through our website MtMA or by calling LaDawn at 406-437-2090, if you have questions. You may contribute to MtMA with an electronic donation through our website or mail your donation to the following address. Thank you so much for your kind consideration of our request, and we hope to hear from you soon. 

Montana Mediation Association

19960 Hwy 91 North 

Glen, MT 59732

Upcoming MtMA Board Election

MtMA will hold our annual membership meeting with board election electronically on May 20, 2021. We invite the membership to nominate members for board positions. We have room on the board for up to 5 new members. Please submit email nominations to memberservices@mtmediation.org by April 16, 2021. 


We have been steadily ramping up our social media activity in recent months, so be sure to like the MtMA Facebook page in order to stay in the loop with all of the latest Montana mediation happenings.


MtMA members and the general public are welcome to attend all MtMA board meetings, which occur via video call the third Tuesday of each month from 6pm to 8pm. We are always happy to meet folks, answer questions, and tell you anything you’d like to know about the MtMA.

If you are interested in attending our next board meeting, please reach out to memberservices@mtmediation.org for details on how to participate.


We are here to serve mediators and mediation in Montana, so if you have any thoughts, suggestions, questions, needs or feedback about how we can do our work better, we are all ears! You can always reach us via email or over the phone: 406-579-2371