TMCA's Outstanding Credentialed Mediator for 2017--Kay Elkins-Elliott

Kay Elkins-Elliott
TMCA’s Outstanding Credentialed Mediator for 2017

At the Annual TMCA Symposium in Fort Worth on October 28th, the TMCA Outstanding Credentialed Mediator Award for 2017 was presented to Kay Elkins-Elliott, J.D., LL.M., M.A.

Over the past 30 years, Kay has contributed in monumental and substantively-essential ways to shape the growth and inclusion of mediation in the legal profession and in society in general. From her position on the faculty of DFW School of Law, then Texas Wesleyan Law School − now Texas A&M Law School − she has been a powerful, positive influence for thousands of law students regarding the use of alternative methods to resolve conflict. Kay’s students now populate bar associations nationwide, and their practices, leadership, and influence continue to expand and extend the positive lessons learned from her regarding the use and benefits of ADR in general, and particularly in mediation.

Kay’s resume reflects an impressive list of accomplishments and contributions that have characterized her leadership and service in both the educational and professional ADR communities. She began arbitrating in 1975, was trained in mediation in 1980, and was active in providing ADR services throughout the 80’s. In 1990, when the current ADR movement had its beginning with the Dallas Bar Association and the Dallas judiciary, Kay availed herself of every training opportunity locally and with Harvard University School of Law, Ohio State University School of Law, and many others to the extent that she has "racked up" over 900 hours of basic and advanced training in mediation, negotiation, arbitration, collaborative law, facilitation, and conflict management.

In academia, her positions on the faculty of Texas Wesleyan School of Law, and its current iteration as Texas A&M School of Law, have been the perfect opportunities for Kay to distinguish herself as a teacher and trainer of the skills she has applied so effectively in her practice as an ADR professional. The regular success of her interscholastic mediation and negotiation teams in the national and international competitive arenas has garnered her an international reputation as a leader in the field of mediation and negotiation. As coach, Kay’s teams have won two national ABA negotiation competitions and multiple regional competitions. She also coached the Texas A&M National Champion Representation-in­Mediation Team and served as a judge for the 2015 International Law Student Negotiation Competition in Dublin, Ireland. In addition, her published works are valuable contributions to the literature essential to the education and practice of ADR professionals everywhere.

Kay has served on numerous boards and committees whose functions and purposes are the support and continued development of mediation, including The State Bar of Texas, American Bar Association, Texas Association of Mediators, Texas Mediation Trainers Roundtable, and many more, including having served as a board member of TMCA. Kay has been named a Texas Super Lawyer in multiple years and is a member of the highly selective Academy of Distinguished Neutrals.

A true giant in the field of ADR and mediation, TMCA is pleased to honor Kay Elkins-Elliott with this award.