Key’s co-founders, Christine and Kristen, are trained mediators and attorneys with over 40 years’ of combined experience as court-appointed guardians ad litem, independent workplace investigators and attorneys representing individuals and companies in employment, education, probate, contracts, personal injury, union matters and property/land use matters. The breadth and depth of their substantive law knowledge is the cornerstone of Key’s ability to offer mediation in a wide range of cases. Key offers mediation in all types of civil disputes, including but not limited to, business, contracts, land use, higher education, family matters, divorce, property, probate, labor and employment matters.
Kristen and Christine became acquainted through their individual appointments as Impartial Mediators for the RI Department of Education (“RIDE) and discovered a mutual appreciation of mediation’s power as a dispute resolution tool. They formed Key to break through the limitations of the traditional litigation model. In 2020, in the face of the COVID pandemic, they assisted RIDE with developing and implementing an effective remote mediation process and modified that process for Key’s private mediation clients. Skilled in mediating in-person, multi-party and remote mediations, Christine and Kristen use facilitative, evaluative and narrative approaches, as appropriate, to keep parties engaged, focused and forward-looking.
Kristen Sloan Maccini
Kristen’s approach to mediation is respectful, efficient and curious. She strives to create an atmosphere in which parties can contribute anything they believe is important to their dispute. This helps parties feel fully heard and facilitates acknowledgement of their genuine interests. Parties are then able to help architect their own practical and sustainable solutions.
Admitted to the practice of law in 1991 Kristen joined Gardner, Sawyer Gates & Sloan and gained experience in many types of civil law matters including contract, real property, corporate and probate. She has appeared before the probate, district, superior and supreme courts of the state and the federal district court as well as before state administrative agencies, municipal courts and boards. She served as co-counsel in a property case before the US Court of Federal Claims in Washington, DC and is a member of the Bar of the United States Supreme Court.
In 2013, she pursued mediation training through the Center for Mediation and Collaboration RI (CMCRI) and began mediating in the RI District Courts. She was an active member of its board and its executive board from 2014 – 2020 and continues to serve on its Fund Development Committee and as an instructor. In 2017, Kristen started her own law and mediation practice in Jamestown, RI and expanded her work to include nonprofit and municipal matters helping 501(c)(3)s to optimize their work with town government. Also that year she began mediating for the RI Department of Education resolving disputes between families and school districts. In 2019, Kristen added education, small business and employment legal work.
She handles private mediations in all types of civil disputes including breach of contract, property, family and probate matters. In addition, she is an adjunct professor of law at the Roger Williams University School of Law. She is an active member of the RI Bar Association’s Continuing Legal Education Committee and of the RI Women’s’ Bar Association. She is a member of the American Bar Association, its section of Dispute Resolution and its Women in Dispute Resolution (WIDR) committee.
Christine is a trained mediator skilled in assisting parties with identifying key issues while keeping them on course toward resolution. Her compassionate perseverance keeps the parties productively engaged. It is her goal to mediate in a way that offers an opportunity for parties to efficiently resolve their disputes with a process that respects their priorities.
Christine knows first-hand, how parties benefit from being actively involved in resolving their disputes and that mediation, when done well, offers a uniquely productive way to be heard and reach resolution. In conjunction with her mediation practice, Christine is a practicing attorney, first licensed in MA in 1998 and later in RI in 1999. After graduating with honors from Suffolk University Law School, where she was on the editorial board of the Transnational Law Review, Christine began her litigation career in Boston handling personal injury, premises liability, contract and employment law cases. She then returned to RI as a litigator in private law firms and as a staff attorney in a nonprofit law firm. In her current private practice, Christine focuses on special education, adult guardianships, employment law, construction, small businesses and contract law. She served as a Guardian ad Litem in probate courts and by special appointment in family courts and is well regarded for her comprehensive reports. Christine also acts as an independent workplace investigator upon request. Christine’s expansive and in-depth experience handling various types of civil cases in both administrative and court hearings is instrumental for mediations in which parties or their attorneys seek a case evaluation as part of the mediation process.
Christine is most often engaged by parties directly or other attorneys to mediate matters involving children and families (education, divorce, special needs), contract, construction, insurance, personal injury and employment matters. She is skilled in facilitative, evaluative and hybrid methods individualized for each mediation. She is known for her tireless, pragmatic and personal approach to the parties and her ability to assist in crafting solutions that work for them.