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Sarah Blake



Sarah Blake is a multi-award winning Conflict Strategist and Mediator. A second-generation practitioner with 25 years of experience, she delivers a calm and confident leadership style that helps clients navigate complex decision-making during conflict, change and crisis.

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Australia, Fiji, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, Solomon Islands, United Kingdom, United States
English
Mediation Profile

Helping you have the conversations that matter.

Sarah Blake is a multi-award winning Corporate Trainer, Conflict Strategist and International Speaker. As a second generation practitioner with 25 years of experience, what sets Sarah apart from others in her industry is her capacity to understand the strategic implications of conflict; enabling her to work with clients to achieve real solutions.

With a focus on high conflict, culture and leadership, Sarah works with leaders and teams to help them navigate their way through change, confusion and conflict so they can make better decisions.

Her expertise in process design for multi-party, cross-border and cultural disputes has resulted in international recognition. She has served on multiple local and national committees and is sought after internationally to contribute to industry growth. Her clients have included the World Bank, BHP and Australian Federal Police. She has recently released her first book – a poetry collection on the business of peacemaking.

Contact Sarah via [email protected] or our website at https://smblake.com/

Sarah Blake is a multi-award winning Corporate Trainer, International Speaker and Conflict Strategist. With 25 years of experience, what sets Sarah apart from others in her industry is her capacity to understand the strategic positioning of conflict; enabling her to work with clients to achieve real solutions.

Her experience in working in high conflict cases has resulted in the design of a structured multidisciplinary approach to case management. These are the cases that are multidimensional both in content and context and usually involve various stakeholders. In all her cases, Sarah empowers her clients to respond to conflict in a way that aligns culture, values and economic realities. Her mediation process is facilitative and interest-based and she works with legal advisors from both parties to ensure informed decision-making is maximised.

Her work has resulted in organisations and leaders increased capacity to strengthen relationships and maximise profitable business outcomes. Her model of service delivery has resulted in many clients changing the way they think about conflict, seeing as an opportunity for innovation and change, thus reducing the cost of the fight. Her work has also helped her clients to engage more effectively with stakeholders and increasing buy-in and stability in complex cases. 

Sarah has a unique depth to her experience with a particular focus on multi-party and cultural conflicts. Sarah provides high level advice to Federal, State and International parties on conflict and dispute resolution. Her clients have included the World Bank, BHP and Australian Federal Police.

Her commercial experience includes; business to business negotiations and contract disputes, franchise and trade, tenancy and lease arrangements, will and estate disputes relating to business and HR/IR workplace disputes. Some of her significant cases have included the mediation of complex Native Title cases, disputes between government, business and community over service delivery and mediation of board and local government disputes which directly impacted business. She is increasingly sought after within the SME sector and works with emerging companies as they seek to bridge both economic and people-centric solutions. 

Sarah is uniquely experienced in Australia as a Cross-cultural Mediator, with authority from the Western and Traditional mediation systems. Sarah has over 6500 hours of experience as a Mediator and Conflict Management Specialist and over 2500 hrs as Mediation Trainer.

 

Sarah's mediation style follows a facilitation interest-based style and brings a calm confident authority to holding the conflict space. Whilst a strong advocate of collaborative problem sovling, she also embraces the limitations of mediations and encourages partnerships with lawyers to ensure parties are provided with every opportunity to make an informed decision. Sarah understands that complex problems require a multi-disciplinary approach to problem-solving and her breadth of expereince enables her to explore beyond the legal framework. 

With a particular focus on the pre-mediation process, Sarah works with parties in both the design of culturally appropriate processes and in preparing them to effectively participate in the negotiation. This helps parties maximise the chances of a constructive outcome and helps to reduce time and costs pressures which often create barriers for effective decision-making. 

Generally, but not exclusively, the process is delivered in joint sittings with minimal caucus interventions. That said, each mediation is designed in consultation with clients to ensure that the process reflects a legitimate decision-making forum. This is particularly so when delivering within a cross-cultural, cross-border or international jurisdictional environment.

 She has designed multiple dispute resolution process that engages both traditional and western contemporary ADR practices. Her work at Federal, State, University, Commercial and Not for Profit sectors provide unique insights into the complexities of multiparty decision-making. 

Sarah's main practice area is in the high conflict cases, the multi-party, cross-border or cultural disputes. These are the conflicts that are increasingly impacting government, commercial and community sectors' capacity to deliver on growth, innovation and change.

In particular, this includes Land & Resources, Commercial and Corporate conflicts. Sarah also provides significant workplace conflict intervention which includes mediation, training and coaching. 

As part of her practice, she is increasingly involved in conflict management work with boards focusing on governance functionality - helping them make decisions and communicate effectively when things get complicated.  

Please contact Ms Blake for details on her fee structure - rates will vary depending on client capacity.

Rockingham Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank: Board member

Federal Court of Australia: Native Title Mediation Panel member

Resolution Institute - Australia & New Zealand 


Graham Castledine
Partner, Castledine Gregory
Unit C4/118 Railway Street, West Perth WA 6005
T: (08) 9486 7665 | F: (08) 9486 7663 | M: 0409 101 131
E: [email protected] |

Ceinwen McNeil
CEO
BVT Engineering Professional Services
+61 408 384 121

Stephen Wright
Chief Operating Officer
Deerubbin Local Aboriginal Land Council
Ph: 0437 034107
Email: [email protected]

Training and Education

Accredited Mediator Resolution Institute (formally LEADR) (current)
Accredited Mediator National Mediation Standard, 2008 - current
Accredited Mediator International Mediation Institute (IMI), 2010 – current

Master of Indigenous Knowledge (Mawul Rom) 2011: Charles Darwin University
Mawul Rom Graduate 2009: Cross-cultural mediator & peace-maker, recognised by Dhurili Clan Alliance Elders & Mawul Rom
Master of Strategic Affairs 2004: - Australian National University
Bachelor of Arts 2001: Northern Territory University 
Mediator training – LEADR, 1998

Recognized Peacemaker Madayin Law, Arnhem Land

Sarah provides comprehensive professional training services to help parties harness the positive potential of conflict through corporate training and leadership development.

As part of her commitment to this, Sarah regularly contributes to teaching and mentoring within the industry. As a corporate trainer, she has delivered mediation and conflict focused workshops domestically and internationally both in-house and publically. She has lectured at multiple Universities and is now sought after as a guest lecturer and thought leader for collaborations. She is particularly respected for her work in the cross-cultural space, having delivered customised mediation training to the Australian Mediation Standard in Australia, Solomon Islands and Fiji. Her expertise was recongised by the World Bank when she was requested as the spokesperson for media interviews in the Pacific. Sarah has delivered talks across 9 countries and is regularly sought after to contribute to industry change. 

She is regularly sought after to provide mentoring and supervision support to colleages and emerging professionals and works with her local schools to empower young children to develop better ways of resolving conflict. 

 

  • Executive Assistance Network  National Conference 2020
  • High Conflict Resolution Institute 2020
  • RKCC Busines Growth and Conflict 2019
  • Executive Networking Event Ireland 2019
  • Resolution Institute NZ
  • Legal Aid Summer Series – Mediating Burial Disputes: what this means for Indigenous Clients: Feb 2017
  • Australian Dispute Centre: Understanding the Cross-Cultural Mediation Space 2016
  • Supreme Court WA Mediation Panel, 2015: Culture & Context: Engaging in the Context for Legitimate Decision Making
  • Kongress, Perth 2015: Cross-Cultural Decision Making – The Role of Context
  • World Mediation Summit, Berlin, 2015 – Mediating the Space Between: Negotiating legitimacy for Cross-Cultural Mediation in Australia
  • Mawul Rom Projects – Leadership Gathering 2009, Law & Justice Gathering 2008, Madayin Law Ceremony 2009
  • A Cross-Cultural exploration of our role as peace-makers in helping to calm fears during cross-cultural mediations, 10th International LEADR Conference 2009
  • Paper: ‘Cross-cultural Mediation – Foundations & Preparation’ - Core Solutions & Turcan Connell, Edinburgh UK, 2009
  • Paper: ‘Balanda & Yolngu bring fear to negotiations. How do we help to calm that fear?’ co-authored with Brenda Mutha, Mawul Rom Association, 2008
  • Paper: ‘Mediation: Cultural Healing through Community Healing’ delivered with Rev. Dr Djiniyini Gondarra, National Indigenous Justice CEOs Forum, 2007
Publications

Sarah recently released her first book, a collection of poems about the busienss of peacemaking. She also publishes articles and blogs through LinkedIn and other websites and has had the following articles publishes: 

  • Ground: A collection of poems, the business of peace-making, culture and conflict, S Blake 2020
  • Something Lost, Something Gained; a poetry reflection about covid-19, KMD Press 2020 
  • Cultural Times Magazine - regular contributor 2020 
  • Enrich Magazine - poetry contribution
  • Legal Aid Summer Series: Mediating Burial Disputes: what this means for Indigenous Clients: 2017
  • Australian Dispute Centre: Understanding the Cross-Cultural Mediation Space 2016 
  • Supreme Court WA Mediation Panel, Culture & Context: Engaging in the Context for Legitimate Decision Making, 2015
  • Kongress, Cross-Cultural Decision Making – The Role of Context, 2015
  • World Mediation Summit, Mediating the Space Between: Negotiating legitimacy for Cross-Cultural Mediation in Australia, 2015 
  • Paper - Reflecting on Mediation: a journey of peacemaking – 2015
  • Paper – Cross-cultural Mediation in Australia: Negotiating Legitimacy - 2015
  • Paper: A Cross-Cultural exploration of our role as peace-makers in helping to calm fears during cross-cultural mediations, 10th International LEADR Conference 2009, 
  • Paper: ‘Cross-cultural Mediation – Foundations & Preparation’ - Core Solutions & Turcan Connell, Edinburgh UK, 2009
  • Paper: ‘Balanda & Yolngu bring fear to negotiations. How do we help to calm that fear?’ co-authored with Brenda Mutha, 2008, Mawul Rom Association.
  • Paper: ‘Mediation: Cultural Healing through Community Healing’ delivered with Rev. Dr
  • Djiniyini Gondarra, 2007, National Indigenous Justice CEOs Forum
    Article: ‘What Mediation means to me’, published in the ‘Here & Now’, South Australia 2008.
Compliance

IMI Professional Conduct Assessment Process
Mediator Standards Board - National Mediation Standards
Resolution Institute - Complaints Process
Aboriginal Mediation Service - WA Department of Attorney General

IMI Professional Conduct Assessment Process Mediator Standards Board - National Mediation Standards Resolution Institute - Complaints Process Aboriginal Mediation Service - WA Department of Attorney General

AON – Professional Indemnity & Public Liability & Management Liabilty

Contact
Sarah
Blake
Sarah
+61 419841184
+61 419841184
Director
Sarah M Blake Pty Ltd
PO Box 117
Rockingham
Western Australia
6968
Australia
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