Owner and Attorney-Mediator Karen Salib on Her Approach to Divorce Mediation

owner of New Hope Divorce Mediation and attorney-mediator Karen Salib poses for the camera

I came to fully embrace divorce mediation as my professional calling after nearly 10 years as a divorce and custody litigator. While I enjoyed the rigor and discipline required for adversarial practice, I ultimately found traditional divorce litigation to be unsatisfying for many of the same reasons as the parties typically do. The litigation process is inefficient, wastes resources, and is destructive to relationships.

I knew there was a better way for me to serve divorcing couples, especially parents. My goal in making the move to a full-time divorce mediation practice was, therefore, to leverage my experience to help people in the best way I know how — through sitting down with open minds and facilitating discussions that help divorcing couples find common ground.

Owning my own mediation practice was a natural transition. By the time I took the reins at New Hope Divorce Mediation, I had already helped to build and manage a successful multi-state divorce and custody mediation practice that was owned by others. This gave me the experience and confidence to set out to achieve my long standing dream of establishing and growing my own practice. I felt that blazing my own trail would give me the professional and creative freedom to serve families in accordance with my values, strengths, and vision.

Of course, a little luck never hurts, and I was extremely lucky that the opportunity to acquire an established and respected mediation practice in my community came along just at the right time. I was fortunate to have a solid foundation as my launchpad, and to build on the tradition and legacy of esteemed mediator, Mindey Elgart.

Our practice at New Hope Divorce Mediation embodies my core values as an Attorney-Mediator. I believe that everyone who makes the difficult decision to get divorced should have the opportunity for a dignified and affordable divorce process. My philosophy is rooted in my belief and experience that people know what their families need better than courts do, and that — with skillful support and guidance from an Attorney-Mediator — most people can reach enduring agreements that meet their interests without wasteful, destructive, adversarial court proceedings.

Mediation allows me to use my strengths to help people find solutions to their most difficult challenges. I prioritize attentive listening and patient communication in order to help participants articulate and explore their own resolutions. I enjoy unraveling complex financial issues and helping people “see the forest for the trees,” guiding them through the process with clarity. My commitment to organization and attention to detail helps to ensure an efficient and thorough mediation process from beginning to end. Additionally, my readiness to adapt to the diverse needs of different people and families allows me to offer a mediation experience that strives to be inclusive and beneficial for everyone involved.

I see my role as that of a compassionate, neutral facilitator who helps people engage in productive, cooperative discussions to reach agreements that work for their families. At the same time, I draw heavily on my experience as a former divorce litigator, as well as my education and training as an attorney, to provide useful legal information, practical ideas, and a comprehensive process that supports our clients through their entire divorce process. My greatest joy is helping people communicate to find their own, practical solutions to their complex challenges, which I believe is the primary role of a good mediator.

Maybe more than anything else, I love that our job as Attorney-Mediators is to bring out the best in people — to tap into and leverage the inherent capacity of human beings to be curious, compassionate, and creative with one another, even those with whom they are in deep conflict.

If you’re anticipating or beginning the process of divorce and are interested in divorce mediation, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Our team and I would be happy to help you explore your options and see how we can help.