MEET ME! Q&A with Erin Gleason Alvarez, Mediator & Arbitrator

How would you describe your business and your client base?

I am a mediator and arbitrator, specializing in the resolution of complex commercial and insurance disputes. I also provide negotiation consulting services, which has in turn led me to opportunities to provide outside general counsel services to small and mid-size firms. I love the variety of my work and the fact that I feel like I’m helping people – whether it’s resolving a dispute among business partners or advising a start-up on formation, funding, and protecting their interests.

How did you get to where you are today?
I knew when I was six years old that law school was in my future. I was a feisty kid, always in trouble for being argumentative. While my friends played “house,” I asked if I could draw up a deed for them… At some point, I realized lawyers got paid for being argumentative so that was that. I started out as a litigator but it never felt right. So I quit by firm job in NYC (almost 15 years ago now…), moved to Malibu, and pursued an LLM at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, at Pepperdine Law School. Straus was amazing and put me on a career path that has allowed me creative and interesting work. After working in-house for ten years, I decided to launch my own practice and hit the ground running!

What gets you up in the morning? How do you typically start your day?
I meditate for twenty minutes every morning with Headspace, which I love. I tend to be a nervous type so I need to be thoughtful about keeping myself grounded. My eleven year old son is my greatest inspiration. He always sees the bright side of things and is such a source of joy for me. He is also the best negotiator I have ever met (and I’ve met my fair share).

What would you do if you weren’t in your current role?
If I was not lawyer I would bake. I love baking – another wonderful way to stay grounded and I’m good at it. I specialize in chocolate.

Tacos or pizza?
Pizza. No contest. Any kind.

Thank you! Before you go, is there anything you’d like to add?
I have so enjoyed meeting Auxana and the energy you all bring to your work. Thank you for the support and insights you provide outsourced GC’s – and for featuring me in this article!

Thank YOU, Erin!  Want to learn more about Erin?  She will be hosting a Coffee Talk at Auxana Summit.  Early Bird tickets are available through the end of August – visit to secure your spot and get a swag bag!!!