OCU Law Professor Named to Key Post in ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice

(October 25, 2012) – Professor Phyllis Bernard, Director of the Center on Alternative Dispute Resolution at Oklahoma City University School of Law, has been appointed Co-Chair of the Adjudication Committee of the American Bar Association Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice. Professor Bernard officially begins her duties this week, at the annual fall conference of the Section in Washington, DC.

The Adjudication Committee plays a key role in tracking current and developing trends in federal and state agency hearings and court reviews of those proceedings. One of Bernard’s chief responsibilities will be to prepare the chapter on highlights in administrative adjudications in the United States for the Section’s annual Developments in Administrative Law, a reference book highly regarded in the field. Earlier in 2012 the Section published the second edition of its Guide to Federal Adjudication under the Administrative Procedure Act, already considered a “bestseller” expecting a second printing soon.

“It was exciting to revisit the work we had done a decade and a half ago, exploring how to bring the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act to life,” Bernard said, describing the 2012 update of her 2003 chapter. She had served on the ABA Task Force on Confidentiality in Government ADR, which matured into part of the current inter-agency advisory body within the Department of Justice that guides the growth of ADR in government.

Prof. Bernard was inducted as a Fellow of the National Association of Administrative Law Judges based on her innovative field work and scholarship on government agency applications of tribal peacemaking methods. She consulted with the Administrative Conference of the United States to bring ADR to the Provider Reimbursement Review Board, the federal appellate tribunal that adjudicates high-dollar fiscal disputes under Medicare Part A. Bernard served on that tribunal just prior to joining the Oklahoma City University law faculty.

Bernard served simultaneously on the governing Councils of the Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice and the Section of Dispute Resolution; contributing to amendments to the Model Rules of Professional Conduct to address ethics issues in ADR; finalizing the Uniform Mediation Act; and revising the ABA-AAA Code of Conduct for Arbitrators. Bernard proposed and co-edited the first comprehensive guide to ethics in dispute resolution, which has become a standard part of the ADR literature.

Bernard was the first professor from the Oklahoma City University School of Law to be elected to the position of Vice-Chair, then Chair of an AALS Section (Alternative Dispute Resolution) after the law school gained full member status in 2003.