Mediation Reviews

  • Who’s Who Legal Mediation Thought Leaders (2017): Donald Philbin Jr at ADR TOOLBOX in Texas is recommended for his “exceptional” mediation skills and depth of knowledge of the mediation process. One client says of him, “His grasp of the forces that drive a successful mediation is always spot on. There is not a mediator working today that I would trust more in bringing a case to resolution.”
  • “Don is a mediator that I can trust to have the knowledge and insight to settle any kind of case from family law to complex commercial matters. His pragmatic approach helps to steer parties into a position to make sensible business decisions.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “I have worked with Donald R. Philbin, Jr. as a mediator at least six times in the last two years. Don’s track record of success in those mediations is beyond compare. He is extremely hardworking, patient, and whip smart. In each case Don assisted the parties to reach a settlement. I highly recommend him as a mediator.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Don Philbin is a very quick study. He boils a case down to the important issues rapidly and he doesn’t get distracted by non-issues.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don has a thoughtful and deliberate approach to mediation. Far more than a “message carrier,” Don helps parties look for solutions to their disputes that may not have to come to their minds.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Don R. Philbin, Jr. is one of the most practical and effective mediators I know of. He spends his time efficiently with each side and has the intuition to know just where the “give and takes” are in each case.  He has an extensive legal background, but unlike many of his competitors, he also has an extensive business background.  While the lawyers are thinking like lawyers, Don often comes up with creative solutions based on his multidimensional expertise.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Thank you, Don, for another successful mediation of another intractable dispute. You are very good at what you do, working a system of dispute resolution that is so much better than scorched-earth litigation, where usually only the lawyers end up winning in the end. A palpable aura of respect, pleasant demeanor, knowledge of the issues, sincerity, patience, unquestioned impartiality – you have all of the qualities that make an excellent mediator who gently nudges the parties to a fair resolution of a dispute that they weren’t able to resolve on their own. I know you will say you were only doing your job, but thank you for doing it so well.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “I just completed the most difficult mediation of my career. We literally worked for 22-hours straight. Don Philbin quickly recognized the legal and factual issues involved as well as the unique and challenging personalities that needed to be managed. He did a flawless job keeping the parties focused on the goal of settlement and helped the parties find common ground and a path to resolution. Most importantly, he did not give up and kept the parties working 22-hours. This was my first mediation with Don, but it will not be my last. I highly recommend Don to all who are in need of a dedicated and skillful mediator.” Trial attorney on LinkedIn
  • “Don Philbin successfully mediated a complicated and emotionally-charged business divorce matter for me. He built a positive rapport with the participants and introduced creative ideas. Don was determined to resolve the dispute, which he did after 18-hours of mediation.” National firm lawyer on Best Law Firms
  • “Don is an incredible mediator. Two weeks ago he was appointed to mediate a visitation dispute – first time I had met him. We reached an agreement. This couple had very poor communication. After the mediation, the father called the mother and they talked for two hours. My client is very thankful the matter settled out of court, and for this new ability to communicate with her former spouse. Second mediation with Don was last week – more difficult facts and equally satisfying results.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “[Philbin] is an excellent mediator. He works hard to forge an agreement and employs his experience to suggest creative solutions to disputes.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “I’m very familiar with Don R. Philbin’s estimable mediation skills. He has mediated for me, and I have mediated as a co-mediator with him.  He is personable, intelligent, and creative with the perfect demeanor for even the toughest mediations.  I highly recommend him for a broad range of mediations from business matters to family law.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don stepped in to mediate a case with interesting legal issues and emotionally charged parties. He did a great job realistically evaluating the potential legal outcomes from both perspectives. In a single session with Don, we were able to reach a settlement agreement that included a novel, non-financial element neither party had previously considered. It was a creative solution that enabled the parties to resolve their differences without further litigation.” National firm lawyer on Martindale
  • “Donald Philbin, Jr. is well informed, savvy, and very personable. He took an active role in negotiating the settlement of a tough employment discrimination case involving a professor who was denied tenure.  Philbin, Jr. took the necessary time with and gave the necessary attention to the concerns of all parties and their counsel and played an integral role in helping the parties to resolve this case.  I will certainly recommend him to any area clients who need an effective mediator who is very likeable.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Mr. Philbin’s education in the legal field as well as his business knowledge serves a client very well.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “I was an attorney in a very difficult custody case. We lucked out and drew Donald R. Philbin, Jr. as our Dispute Resolution Center mediator. He was unbelievable in his tenacity, even having a second mediation in order to make sure our issues were resolved. Don’s professionalism and friendly demeanor was a true blessing to our very lucky clients. I would highly recommend him.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don has helped to settle cases with some of the most difficult clients. His business-sense helps clients understand the long-term and unseen costs of litigation to a business versus pursuing a matter on principal.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is a very effective and tenacious mediator. He refused to give up, and even though it took more than one day, he was able to get a very difficult case resolved.  He is great!” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “This was my first mediation with Mr. Philbin and I was very impressed with his professionalism, creativity and commitment to the parties and attorneys in resolving some very difficult issues. Mr. Philbin was dedicated to staying the course and gratuitously spent considerable additional time to reach resolution. I’ve been involved in many mediations in 20+ years of practice and this was one of the most positive mediation experiences I have had. I look forward to working with him again.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Don Philbin is a fantastic mediator. The proof is in his success.  I go back to him with any case that it is in my client’s best interest to settle.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don Philbin is one of the very best mediators I have seen. He is a top-notch professional.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Mr. Philbin worked hard to get the parties to agreement during the formal meeting and mediation session. Later, after he had already earned his fee, he kept in touch with both parties and continued to work with and encourage settlement; with a final result of a mutually acceptable settlement on the eve of trial.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don is an incredibly personable attorney. He is extremely intelligent and able to communicate difficult concepts with ease.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Fantastic mediator with great follow-up. You want Don to mediate your case!” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Don Philbin has developed a well-earned and well-deserved reputation since beginning his practice as a mediator. His is very highly regarded.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is my preferred mediator.” Anonymous big firm lawyer and former judge on BestLawyers
  • “I am impressed by Don Philbin’s advance preparation, command of the subject matter, and post-mediation follow up. I highly recommend him as a mediator in complex civil matters.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Don Philbin is a great mediator! He is smart. He knows how to make litigants consider the risk / reward of a settlement.” Anonymous lawyer on Best Law Firms
  • “Don Philbin has an advanced approach to dispute resolution that is effective in complex situations.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is an extremely effective mediator. He is quick to grasp the issues that will be the biggest problems (leading to a possible impasse), and assist in formulating solutions for these issues.  He is professional, likable and quick to establish rapport with the client.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Mr. Philbin possesses a keen insight into the essence of the issues at hand and understanding of the matters at risk.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don does an exceptional job of building rapport with parties to mediation, keeps them at the table, and works thoughtfully and tirelessly to achieve a settlement.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don is a wonderful professional to work with. I have worked with him on a number of matters, and I really appreciate his ability to help mediate to resolution complicated and hotly contested matters.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Excellent person, lawyer, mediator.” Anonymous judge on Martindale
  • “Don is one of the very best mediators. He is very smart, very talented, and very dedicated to his work.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Don Philbin is effective and thorough. He is always pleasant to work with and goes the extra mile to assist in resolving your case long after his earned fee has been expended.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don was able to really understand a very complex business “divorce” and help the parties dissolve a 14-year business relationship. He kept pushing the parties toward resolution and was able to obtain a great result for my client.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is an excellent mediator, who has frequently settled highly contentious cases for both myself and colleagues. I recommend him highly.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Stellar intellect & character.” Anonymous judge on Martindale
  • “Don is one of the top of the line, go to guys. He is genuinely committed to achieving resolution.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is a great mediator, particularly for complex commercial, family, or estate disputes. He brings his analytical expertise related to litigation and his experience as an attorney and litigator to bear on all parties for successful resolution of cases.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “An outstanding and innovative mediator.” Commenter on SuperLawyers
  • “Don is an innovative genius in the area of dispute resolution. Among other things he recently developed a negotiations app for the iPhone. His techniques are cutting edge and he is always looking for a new avenue to assist parties in resolving disputes.” Commenter on SuperLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin Jr. is extremely knowledgeable and does a great job.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “This was my first time to use Don. He came to me highly recommended. He was fair, objective and absolutely knew his stuff. I was impressed with how rapidly he grasped the important points of a complex transaction. I will use him again.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “I have mediated several cases with Don Philbin. He is one of the highest rated mediators in San Antonio. I find the best cases to mediate with Don are commercial disputes because of his business analysis approach.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Using his business skills, legal skills and a lot of common sense, he is able to understand and be extremely effective. Mr. Philbin is very sensitive to the stress mediation places on a client. He is able to put the client at ease to achieve results.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is a good mediator who was helpful in getting cases resolved, even if they did not finish at mediation. He provided good follow-up after mediation and assistance in resolution.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “We call Donald R. Philbin, Jr. for some of our bigger, more difficult, and more important cases, especially commercial, probate, and property disputes. If it can get settled, he finds a way. He’s very quick to understand complex matters. He works hard and stays with it.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is a highly experienced and an excellent mediator.” Lawyer on Best Lawyers
  • “Mr. Philbin resolved a highly conflicted post-divorce matter. He exhibited great professionalism and skill during the mediation. I have recommended him to many of my colleagues.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don is an extremely talented mediator. Don works hard, and has the skill to get a tough case settled.” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Don Philbin is a very talented mediator, truly committed to assisting the parties to resolve their issues through mediation.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr. is a fine mediator, an innovator in the field, and a first class individual with great ethical values.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Donald R. Philbin, Jr., is professional, hardworking and highly effective.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “I have known Don for many years but just recently mediated with him on a very tough custody issue. Don was quite professional and helped my client through an extremely difficult situation. He has good suggestions and ideas to help the parties reach a resolution.” Private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Donald Philbin, Jr. is a very effective mediator.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don is a great mediator!” Anonymous private practice attorney on Martindale
  • “Don Philbin has an excellent work ethic and concentrates on the job at hand.” Lawyer on BestLawyers
  • “Don is an excellent mediator. I have found him very effective in getting commercial disputes resolved.” Lawyer on BestLawyers

Training Reviews

  • One of the best lectures using humor and factual information I’ve ever attended.
  • Witty and fantastic speaker. Enthusiastic.
  • A Siskel and Ebert 4-star review!
  • Don is a gifted presenter and mediator.
  • Great. Entertaining and informative!
  • Excellent speaker.
  • Best and most entertaining statistical analysis I’ve ever seen.
  • In my role as the Executive Vice President, General Counsel of JAMS I see and participate in many programs all over the world. Don Philbin is clearly head and shoulders above the rest and presents one of the most entertaining and most informative programs on risk analysis I have ever seen. Drop whatever you are doing and try to see him in action.
  • In a 25-year career of commercial litigation and five of full-time mediation and arbitration practice, Don Philbin’s “Deal or No Deal: Leveraging Information to Overcome Psychological Barriers to Efficient Deals” program stands out as one that actually gave me the tools to improve my practice the very next day. Don’s talk riveted my attention; made me laugh out loud; and, made me think of negotiation and mediation in an entirely different light. This program – without more – will equip in-house counsel to WAX the other side at the negotiation table AND to teach his outside counsel how to negotiate a better deal for him the next time around. The day of the marginalized client in settlement negotiations is over and Don Philbin is the guy with the bargaining talent to watch.
  • Enjoyed the hands on application.
  • Makes you think.
  • Excellent and, as usual, just plain fun!
  • Don practices what he preaches, and shows his audience how to do it too — he uses a highly dynamic, compelling, richly visual presentation to convey his message to both the linguistic and graphic learning centers of his audience’s minds. He takes an increasingly rich field of study – how people make decisions, and in particular how and why they make erroneous or irrational decisions — and applies that to the process of negotiation and settlement. What separates a “deal” from “no deal”? Don explains how psychological factors and biases cause litigants and even the most experienced counsel to make irrational decisions, and how to overcome these tendencies in a simple and systematic way.
  • Excellent. Very Interesting. Would have liked more time to discuss and learn what the science shows about predictability.
  • Always first rate!
  • Fantastic.
  • He was superb and info excellent. He knows his stuff.
  • Kept us going after lunch! Deal or no deal metaphor and show was brilliant!
  • Well documented and smoothly presented.
  • Really excellent presentation.
  • Outstanding presentation. Lots of useful information provided in an entertaining package.
  • Don always is entertaining while informing.
  • Great presentation. One of the best.
  • Don presented an excellent CLE seminar on negotiation to Akin Gump’s litigation section, broadcast to all US offices by videoconference. Don tailored the presentation to the audience of litigators, such that guidance on successful mediation strategies was an important part of the program. Don demonstrated his grasp of academic research in the field of negotiation strategies, made the results of that research understandable and interesting, and provided practical insights based on the research. The reviews of his presentation were uniformly positive. Don clearly is not the type of mediator who merely shuttles proposals back and forth and hopes the parties settle. He brings both intellectual rigor and a practical approach to the mediation process.
  • Great insights, engaging presentation.
  • Best speech – funny, intelligent, real life examples – moved my mediation skills dramatically forward today!!!
  • Excellent talk. Could easily be an extra session. Kept everyone’s attention well.
  • Excellent program.
  • Very interesting concepts. Presentation was fast paced and engaging.
© Donald R. Philbin, Jr., P.C.