Leonard L. Riskin

Leonard L. Riskin– Chesterfield Smith Professor of Law at the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida in Gainesville. He earned a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a J.D. from New York University School of Law and an LL.M. from Yale Law School and served as an attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice. He has been mediating, training and writing about dispute resolution since 1980. He has taught mediation worldwide and, since 1999, has been teaching mindfulness meditation to lawyers, law students, and mediators across North America and in Europe. Professor Riskin has published numerous books and articles on dispute resolution, several articles on the potential contributions of mindfulness to law and mediation practice, and non-legal writings in popular publications such as the Atlantic Monthly and the New York Times Magazine. He has won awards from the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution for his scholarship and curricular innovation.

Title of UFCSH talk: “Tools of Awareness for Dealing with Conflict” 
Thursday, October 16th 2008

Mindfulness is a way of paying attention-deliberately, in the moment, and without judgment—to whatever passes through the senses and the mind. One cultivates the ability to maintain such present-moment awareness in silent meditation, then deploys it in daily life. Mindfulness meditation, a 2500-year old practice with Buddhist roots, today is widely used in medicine, psychology, education, business and law. Since 1999, Leonard Riskin has been teaching mindfulness meditation and other tools of awareness to lawyers, law students, mediators, negotiators, and other people who deal with conflict, as a way to enhance their ability to deal with stress, understand themselves and others, provide better service, and get more satisfaction from their work. In this presentation he explains why and how he does this, and, through exercises, give the participants a taste of mindfulness.