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Brown Receives Peace Award

Brown Receives Peace Award

Dispute Resolution Section Honors: Vice Chair Bonnie Wehyer, far left, presented the outgoing chair’s plaque to Nancy Norelli, far right, and Frank Laney presented the Peace Award to LeAnn Nease Brown.

LeAnn Nease Brown was honored on Friday, March 22, as the 2019 recipient of the Dispute Resolution Section’s Peace Award. The award was presented at the section’s annual meeting and CLE in Charlotte.

Brown is a past chair of the section, serving in 2017-18, and currently serves as president-elect of the North Carolina Bar Association and the North Carolina Bar Foundation.

“While I am not sure I am deserving,” Brown said, “I am honored and privileged to receive the Peace Award. To be included among the leaders in alternative dispute resolution who are past recipients is humbling.

“Our Section work advances peaceful alternatives to dispute resolution in our courts and our state. Each member of the Dispute Resolution Section is a peacemaker. I am proud to be a part of this work and fortunate to work with the members of this Section.”

Frank Laney, longtime colleague and former section chair, presented the award.

“When I think of LeAnn, the phrase ‘busy bee’ comes to mind,” Laney said. “She is always busy, and usually leading the way, in charge and making sure it gets done and gets done well. She has been a very active leader in many areas of the North Carolina Bar Association.

“She is active in five sections and has been section chair of three different sections, a member of six N.C. Bar Association committees and chair of four of them. She has served on the NCBA Board of Governors. Of course, now she is president-elect and will be our president next year. She will be busy like a bee.”

Brown, he added, has also been active with the N.C. State Bar and has served on 31 different boards or commissions.

“But this is not a leadership award, it is the Peace Award,” Laney continued. “She was among the first Superior Court mediators to be certified, in 1992. She then became certified as a family financial mediator in 1999. For over 25 years, she has been an active and sought-after mediator, bringing her skills and experience to bear in settling complex cases.

“She was on the board of the Dispute Settlement Center of Orange County for over 10 years and served terms as chair and vice-chair. The Orange County Center was the first mediation program in our state and remains, due to the efforts of leaders like LeAnn, the preeminent dispute settlement center in North Carolina.”

Brown, he added, has been an active member of the section for more than two decades and is a member of the Dispute Resolution Commission. She has served on section and the commission legislative liaison teams, and has provided countless hours of volunteer service as a CLE speaker on various mediation topics.

The Dispute Resolution Section Peace Award honors a person who has made a special contribution or commitment to the peaceful resolution of disputes, including but not limited to the following:

  • (a) Development of new or innovative programs;
  • (b) Demonstrated improvements in service;
  • (c) Demonstrated improvements in efficiency;
  • (d) Research and writings in the area of dispute resolution;
  • (e) Development of continuing education programs; and
  • (f) Leadership with local, state and national boards and legislative bodies.

Past recipients of the Dispute Resolution Peace Award are Carmon Stuart (2002); Scott Bradley (2003); Frank Laney (2004); Jacqueline Clare (2005); J. Anderson Little (2006); Ralph Walker (2007); Charlotte Adams, Beth Okum and Tan Schwab (2008); Chief Justice James G. Exum (2009); Judge James Long (2010); John Schafer (2011); Judge Jim Gates (2012); George Walker (2013); M. Ann Anderson (2014); Mark Morris (2015); Leslie C. Ratliff (2016); Rene Stemple Trehy (2017); and Barbara Ann Davis (2018).