Fourth Chief Justice Harold G. Clarke Award Presented to R. Wayne Thorpe, Esq.


Atlanta, GA — The Georgia Supreme Court Commission on Dispute Resolution and the Dispute Resolution Section of the State Bar of Georgia have awarded the 2017 Chief Justice Harold G. Clarke Award to R. Wayne Thorpe, Esq., in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the field of alternative dispute resolution in Georgia.

 Mr. Thorpe accepted the award Friday, December 8, at the 24th Annual Alternative Dispute Resolution Institute and 2017 Neutrals’ Conference in Atlanta.

Harold Clarke Award

Mr. Thorpe has been a full-time ADR neutral since 1998. He is an ADR neutral for JAMS and has served as mediator, arbitrator, facilitator, special master, and case evaluator in roughly 2,000 cases in at least 15 states, including many complex cases. He is Past Chair of the ABA Dispute Resolution Section and has been a leader in ADR ethics and other policy matters both nationally and in Georgia for many years. He has also served as an adjunct professor and guest presenter in ADR courses in several law schools.

“We congratulate Wayne on this well-deserved award,” said Chris Poole, JAMS president and CEO. “He has made a number of contributions to the ADR community both nationally and in Georgia. It’s wonderful to see him recognized with such an esteemed award.”

Thorpe is the fourth winner of the Clarke Award. The inaugural Clarke Award was given in 2013 to Ansley B. Barton, Esq., mediator, mediation trainer, and founding director of the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution.  In 2015, the award was given to Edith B. Primm, Esq., Director of the Justice Center of Atlanta.  For 2016, the award went to Douglas H. Yarn, Esq., Professor of Law at Georgia State University College of Law

The Commission and the Dispute Resolution Section created the Clarke Award in 2013 to honor the memory of the late Supreme Court Chief Justice Harold G. Clarke. From 1990 to 1994, when Clarke served as Chief Justice, he led the Supreme Court and the State Bar of Georgia in creating a system that helped courts manage their heavy dockets and that offered litigants productive ways to resolve their legal disputes outside of litigation. Today that system helps settle tens of thousands of court cases a year through processes like mediation, arbitration, and early neutral evaluation.