FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Hon. Wayne D. Brazil (Ret.)

Hon. Wayne D. Brazil (Ret.)


San Francisco, CA, USA

Hon. Wayne D. Brazil (Ret.)

Hon. Wayne D. Brazil (Ret.) is fully engaged as a neutral at JAMS, after earning a national and international reputation as one of the most significant innovators and leaders in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). He is an expert in crafting procedures to meet the needs of individual cases – and in finding new directions when movement toward settlement seems to stall. Since joining JAMS, Judge Brazil has mediated and arbitrated a wide range of cases and has been retained repeatedly to preside over mock trials and hearings, providing counsel with highly valued suggestions and critiques.

Judge Brazil spent 25 years as a magistrate judge in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. He exercised the full range of judicial responsibilities, presiding over civil and criminal trials, managing the pretrial development of civil cases, hearing substantive and procedural motions, and ruling on fee disputes. His extensive work as a settlement judge and on complex discovery matters earned him national recognition and was rewarded when the Chief Justice of the United States appointed him to the committees that write the federal rules of civil procedure and evidence. He also led the teams that designed and implemented the Court’s multi-faceted ADR program, then he served as the Court’s first ADR Magistrate Judge, a position he occupied for more than 15 years.

Judge Brazil conducted more than 2,000 settlement conferences in cases across the full spectrum of the court’s jurisdiction, including employment, civil rights, intellectual property, business contracts, insurance, and all types of tort matters.

Judge Brazil’s approach to mediation is energetic engagement, analytical activism and tenacity. He is respectful of all participants and takes special care to manage the process to maximize the likelihood that the parties will understand settlement best serves all.

ADR Experience and Qualifications
  • Served 25 years as a Federal Magistrate Judge, presiding over trials and evidentiary hearings, hearing a full range of motions, managing conventional and ESI discovery, and conducting settlement conferences in thousands of cases.
  • Judge Brazil oversaw the design and implementation of the Northern District’s multi-faceted ADR program and served as the Court’s first ADR Magistrate Judge for more than 15 years. The Northern District’s ADR program is acknowledged widely to be the most comprehensive and sophisticated in the country.
  • In 2009, the Dispute Resolution Section of the ABA conferred its highest award on Judge Brazil. A decade earlier the New York based International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR) honored him with its Lifetime Achievement Award.
  • Member of the 9th Circuit’s ADR Committee for 12 years.
  • Served for 6 years on the Editorial Board of the ABA’s Dispute Resolution Magazine.
  • In addition to scores of published opinions, Judge Brazil has written more than 30 journal articles and four books, focusing primarily on settlement, mediation early neutral evaluation, special masters, and civil discovery.
  • Judge Brazil served the Judicial Conference of the United States as a member of the committees on Civil Rules and on Evidence, and as reporter for the Conference’s Special Committee on the Civil Justice Reform Act.
  • Judge Brazil has trained thousands of judges and lawyers from all over the world in mediation, early neutral evaluation, court-sponsored arbitration, and case management – fields in which his publications have earned numerous awards.

Civil Rights
Class Action/Mass Tort
Federal Judge
Intellectual Property
Personal Injury
Professional Liability
Special Master/ Discovery Referee


San Francisco, CA
Sacramento, CA
Chicago, IL
Los Angeles, CA
Silicon Valley, CA
Walnut Creek, CA
New York, NY

Available to hear cases nationwide.

Recognized as a Top California Neutral "Rising Star," Daily Journal, 2012

Recipient of Prestigious D’Alemberte-Raven Award from the Dispute Resolution Section of the ABA, 2009

“Few people have the range of vision, the attention to detail, the energy for new tasks, the depth of experience, or the passion for the enterprise of dispute resolution that Wayne Brazil so generously shares with the world.” - Former Chair of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution

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