Walter W. Kocher, Esq.
23 Still Water Circle
Brookfield, CT 06804
Hourly Rate $250
Current Self-employed - Attorney
Practice 12
Cases 100
Languages English
Self-employed - Attorney
Attorney, Self-employed, 1994-present; Adjunct Faculty, Ohio State College of Law, 1995-96; Vice President/General Counsel, Borden, Inc., 1979-94; Assistant General Counsel/Corporate Counsel/Litigation Counsel, Borden, Inc., 1969-79; Attorney, Stauffer Chemical, 1968-69; Attorney, Pfizer, Inc., 1963-68; Attorney, Mudge Stern Baldwin & Todd, 1959-63.
Has served as a mediator for the Ohio State and Federal court mediation programs since 1986, mediating numerous personal injury, beach of contract, and employment claims. Has conducted four to six mediations a year under these programs. Since 1994, has been a full time mediator/arbitrator conducting mediations on an ad hoc basis as well as through various mediation programs, such as the U.S. Postal Service Redress Program, and under the auspices of the American Arbitration Association and other ADR providers. The disputes have involved individuals as well as large and small companies and have included improper discharge claims as well as the interpretation of joint venture, acquisition, supply, distribution agreements and other basic contracts. The amounts have ranged up to six figures. As examples, one case involved the State of Ohio and a road maintenance contractor. Another case involved two partners that had a falling out and were attempting to divide up the business without destroying it. A third involved a former key employee who wanted to be compensated for the company's use of his intellectual property. The Postal Service Redress Program allows employees an avenue to be heard on work related questions, such as shift allocation, promotions and suspensions.
The legal issues involved in employment cases have included improper discharge, failure to allow disability claims, and allegations of sexual harassment. Contract issues have included tortious interference, scope of the contract, compliance or non-compliance with the terms, and alternatives to termination. In all cases the scope of damages has been a key issue.
As General Counsel for Borden, initiated Borden's ADR Program, which included the incorporation of Dispute Resolution Provisions into its major contracts. This program resulted in the mediation of a wide variety of disputes including: supply, construction, joint venture, real estate, and acquisition and divestiture agreements; as well as employment, antitrust, marketing, and trade mark and patent disputes. These matters varied in size and importance. Participated in most matters being mediated and in the large matters on a direct basis. The largest dispute related to the termination of natural gas supply agreement, which eventually settled for a nine-figure amount. Another important dispute related to an international joint venture whose scope was key to the companies' international business.
I am a firm believer in mediation as a practical, effective way of resolving disputes. As an arbitrator, while hearing the parties' presentation, I often think that if the parties had truly focused on mediation, I would not be here now. My role in mediation is as a facilitator not an evaluator. I avoid evaluating a parties' position or providing legal advice. As a mediator, it is necessary to be familiar with, understand, and to be able to evaluate the factual and legal issues that arise, but more importantly to be able to focus the parties on resolution, despite their belief that they have strong legal support for their position, and clearly expect to prevail on the merits. I believe the mediator should act as the catalyst in bringing the parties together in their attempt to resolve a dispute. The mediator needs to focus the parties on the benefits of resolving the dispute and explore creative ways of bridging the gap between the parties' interests. A key is convincing the parties, including counsel, that resolution is in the interest of both parties.
Colleen Nissl, Esq., colleenNissl@hexionchemical.com, (614) 225-4791; Thomas F. Ryan, Esq., tryan@sidley.com, (312) 853-7497; Mark M. Kitrich, Esq., mkitrich@kitrichlaw.com, (614) 224-7711.
AAA/ICDR/AAA Mediation.org Panel Conference, 2019; Arbitrator Performance and Demeanor ~ Meeting Participant Expectations, 2018; AAA Enough Already - Discovery in Arbitration, 2017; AAA/ICDR/Mediation.org Panel Conference, 2016; AAA The Ethics of eDiscovery in Arbitration, 2015; AAA, Crossing the Line: New Developments in the Law of Arbitral Jurisdiction 2015; AAA, Principled Deliberations & Decision-Making Skills for Arbitrators 2014; AAA, Conducting Research & Investigations: The Arbitrator's Authorithy, 2014; AAA Managing the arbitration Process for Efficiency & Economy Following the Preliminary Hearing, 2013; AAA Maximizing Efficiency & Economy in Arbitration: Challenges at the Preliminary Hearing, 2013; AAA Managing the Arbitration Process for Efficiency & Economy Following the Preliminary Hearing, 2012; AAA Webinar, Arbitrator Boundaries: What are the Limits of Arbitrator Authority?, 2011; AAA/ICDR Neutrals Conference, 2010; AAA Advanced Mediator Training, 2009; AAA Pro Se: Managing Cases Involving Self-Represented Parties (ACE002), 2006; AAA Neutrals Conference, 2005; AAA Chairing an Arbitration Panel: Managing Procedures, Process & Dynamics (ACE005), 2005; AAA Practical Tips for Dealing with Delay Tactics of Parties and Advocates (ACE004), 2005; AAA Neutrals Conference, 2004; Arbitrator Update, 2004, 2003; Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, Settlement Week Mediation Training, 1986-03; AAA Commercial Arbitrator II Training: Advanced Case Management Issues, 2002; Federal District Court-Southern District of Ohio, Mediation Program, 2002; Center for Dispute Settlement/CPR Introductory and Advanced Mediator Training, 1999, 1998; U.S. Postal Service Mediation Training, 1999; AAA Commercial Arbitrator Training, 1999; Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Introductory and Advanced Courses, 1999, 1997, 1996; AAA LCCP Arbitrator Training, 1997; Better Business Bureau Arbitrator Training, 1995; AAA Introductory, Advanced, Complex Case and International Training Programs, 1994-97; State of Ohio Administration Mediation Training Program; various other ADR training.
Admitted to the Bar: New York, 1960; Ohio, 1974; U.S. District Court: Southern and Eastern Districts of New York; Southern District of Ohio; U.S. Court of Appeals: Second, Sixth and Seventh Circuits; U.S. Supreme Court, 1965.
American Bar Association (ADR Section; Business Section; Litigation Section; ADR Committee, Past Co-Chair); American Corporate Counsel Association (Past Board of Directors, Central Ohio Chapter, Past Board of Directors, President); American Judiciary Society (Past Board of Directors); Food and Drug Law Institute (Past Board of Directors); Columbus Bar Association (ADR Committee; International Committee; Professional Committee); Ohio State Bar Association; Ohio Supreme Court (Dispute Resolution Committee); International Bar Association (Business Law Section; Corporate Counsel Committee, Past Chair).
Fordham University (BS-1956); University of Michigan (JD-1959); New York University (LLM-1968).
"Joint Ventures in East Asia," chapter, CONSIDERATIONS IN THE RESOLUTION OF DISPUTES ARISING IN JOINT VENTURES, Graham and Trotman and International Bar Association, 1992; presenter and participant in numerous American Bar Association, International Bar Association, and Ohio State programs on ADR, 1982-present.
$250 Per Hour
English
United States of America, Switzerland
Brookfield, CT

The AAA provides mediators to parties on cases administered by the AAA under AAA mediation procedures. Mediations that proceed without AAA administration are not considered AAA mediations, even where parties select a mediator who is a member of an AAA mediation roster.