Mediator's Profile


James Smith

Business Name: Smith & Hennessey PLLC

James A. Smith is a veteran trial lawyer that spends a substantial portion of his practice as a neutral, mediating and arbitrating cases. James was admitted to the bar in 1973 and is authorized to practice in Washington State and before the U.S. District Court for the Western and Eastern Districts of Washington, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth and Fifth Circuits, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

James has tried or arbitrated numerous complex cases in a wide variety of substantive contexts. His practice focuses on complex commercial and tort litigation and frequently acts as a neutral in providing mediation or arbitration services, as well as representing clients as an advocate attorney in alternative dispute resolution proceedings.

James is a mediator and arbitrator for the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington and is a member of the Panel of Arbitrators, American Arbitration Association (Commercial and Large Complex Case Panels), and mediates the following areas complex litigation:

  • Business
  • Commercial
  • Environmental
  • Natural resource
  • Securities
  • Employment
  • Contract
  • Construction
  • Tort claims


  • University of Notre Dame, B.A., 1970
  • Cornell University, J.D., 1973

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers;
  • Fellow, American Board of Trial Advocates;
  • Member, International Society of Barristers;
  • Lawyer Representative for the Western District of Washington to the Ninth CircuitJudicial Conference (1995-98);
  • Co-chair and Chair, Federal Bar Association Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee (1995-2001);
  •  Panel of Arbitrators, American Arbitration Association (1986);
  •  Panel of Mediators, United States District Court for the Western District of Washington CR 39.1 Program (1981);
  • Chairperson, Federal Bar Association ADR Task Force (1995);
  • Vice President, Federal Bar Association (2001-02);
  • President, Federal Bar Association (2002);
  • Member and Chairperson, Civil Justice Reform Act Advisory Committee, United States District Court Western District of Washington (1999);
  • Member, Washington State Bar Association (Trustee Trial Practice Section (1983- 86), Member, ADR Section);
  • Member, King County Bar Association (ADR Section);
  • Member, ADR Roundtable.

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