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Thomas J. Stipanowich Bio

William H. Webster Chair in Dispute Resolution, Professor of Law


Professor Stipanowich has led the Straus Institute since 2006, first as Academic Director and now as the Chair in Dispute Resolution. During the period of his leadership, the Institute has been ranked first by peers in the U.S. News & World Report rankings nearly every year. He is a widely recognized scholar, expert, teacher, trainer, and an award-winning author of more than fifty books and articles on arbitration and dispute resolution, which has been cited by the Supreme Court and many other courts. He is recipient of two of the field's highest honors: the D'Alemberte-Raven Award of the American Bar Association Section on Dispute Resolution, and CPR Institute's James F. Henry Award for outstanding contributions to the dispute resolution field. In 2017, he was named a Distinguished Professor of Law by National Law University Delhi, and in 2018, he was honored as an inaugural member of the Global Faculty of Peking University School of Law.

After beginning his career as a litigator, Stipanowich became a chaired professor of law. Prior to joining Pepperdine, he served as President & CEO of the Manhattan-based International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (CPR), a leading non-profit think tank. In addition to a law degree, Stipanowich has two degrees in architecture and has experience as a graphic designer and illustrator; he has designed a series of posters for the Straus Institute. He also loves to sing, and has performed as a tenor soloist with a number of musical groups. His love of history inspired his current work on a book about Abraham Lincoln's handling of conflict in his personal life, law practice, politics, and the Presidency.