Academy Member Inducted 2019

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Janice Sperow, Arbitrator, La Mesa, California.

Janice Sperow

Sperow ADR Services, APC
4305 Beverly Drive
La Mesa, CA 91941
Tel: (619) 508-6868
Fax: (619) 508-6868
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Recognized to California Chapter for Arbitration

Regularly travels out of state to: Arizona, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Washington

Other ADR Services: ADR Training/CME, Court-Appointed Neutral (Special Master), Discovery Referee, Early Neutral Evaluation, Fact Finding, Med-Arb, Mini-Trial Judge
Video Conferencing
  • Practice Commenced1989
  • # of MEDS (as of 22/7/24)678
  • # of ARBS (as of 22/7/24)897
Current Practice
Online / In-Person
  • NAPA


After successful careers as Managing Partner at Ruiz & Sperow, and a senior litigator at Morrison & Foerster, Janice turned her 35+ years’ experience as a Neutral into her full time passion.

As a full time Neutral, Sperow has served as an Arbitrator in over 550 cases, ranging from single issue, one-day hearings to complex, multi-jurisdictional, multi-party, month-long hearings. She runs arbitrations smoothly, timely, and fairly. As counsel, Sperow arbitrated 1000s of matters as well as handled all forms of alternative dispute resolutions, including negotiations, settlement conferences, mediation, facilitated meetings, fact-finding, collective bargaining, and of course, arbitrations. Significantly, she handled two of the largest arbitrations in history. As a mediator, Janice has lost count of the number of mediations she has conducted. A fan of the risk analysis, transformative, evaluative, and interest-based mediation styles, Sperow emphasizes dispute resolution, prevention, and non-escalation. 

Ms. Sperow received her bachelor's degree from the University of California at Berkeley, graduating magna cum laude with high honors. She received her Juris Doctorate from the University of California, San Francisco, Hastings College of the Law, graduating summa cum laude and second out of over 400 students. While in law school, Ms. Sperow received numerous awards for high scholastic achievement, including a Milton Green scholarship, Order of the Coif, Thurston Society and six American Jurisprudence awards. While at law school, Ms. Sperow externed for Chief Judge J. Clifford Wallace of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. After law school, Ms. Sperow served as a judicial clerk for Judge Richard J. Cardamone of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the first Hastings graduate to clerk for a judge of the Second Circuit.

After her clerkship, Ms. Sperow joined Morrison & Foerster, a 1000+ attorney international law firm headquartered in San Francisco where she specialized in complex commercial litigation in a variety of areas, on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants, including: commerical matters, employment, labor, discrimination, intellectual property, energy, trade secret, contract, fraud, banking, aviation, healthcare, consumer, securities, finance, and Title VII law. As an associate, she represented a small San Francisco equipment distributor plaintiff on whose behalf she second chaired a 4 week jury trial resulting in a 1.4 million plaintiff's verdict. After this, her first jury trial, Ms. Sperow continued to represent both plaintiffs and defendants in a variety of business and employment litigation matters, handling numerous jury trials, bench trials, arbitrations, mediations and grievances. As a senior litigator at Morrison & Foerster, Janice Sperow helped defend the then largest Title VII class action in history involving 1,093 claimants and an estimated $2 billion exposure, to successful global resolution. Just before leaving Morrison & Foerster, Ms. Sperow was lead counsel for an alternative energy manufacturer in its $100 million breach of contract and fraud suit against the local utility, Pacific Gas & Electric. While at Morrison & Foerster, Ms. Sperow worked for many corporate, private, and public sector clients.

Ms. Sperow also employed Alternative Dispute Resolution techniques on behalf of her Morrison & Foerster clients, handling dozens of arbitrations, mediations, and neutral case resolutions. She also served as an arbitrator and a chief arbitrator for the Bar Association of San Francisco from 1989 to 1995 and as arbitrator and arbitration panel chair for FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority from 1999 to the present (formerly NASD). After leaving the firm, Ms. Sperow was appointed by Mayor Willie Brown in 1997 to serve as Hearing Officer for municipal railway public transportation disputes. Her one year appointment was accepted by both labor and management without objection. 

Ms. Sperow joined Ruiz & Sperow, LLP, a woman-owned, minority-owned boutique law firm in San Francisco in February 1995 as the firm's Managing Partner, where she served as head of litigation and ADR for the firm. At the firm, Ms. Sperow has represented, among other clients, Laurel Technical Services, Alameda Unified School District, a joint venture comprised of former Dinwiddie Construction executives, Berkeley Unified School District, IFF Multi-Media Company, Fresno Unified School District, International Manufacturing Services (IMS), a consortium of former Granny Goose executives, San Jose Unified School District, San Francisco Airport Commission, California Public Utilities, Los Angeles Unified School District, San Francisco Unified School District and many other corporate and public sector clients. At Ruiz & Sperow, Ms. Sperow concentrated on commercial, ADR, employment and labor matters, sexual harassment, race, age, disability, and gender discrimination, EEOC investigations, OCR matters, PERB hearings, grievances and arbitrations, board advice and counseling, training and workshops, and workplace violence. In January 1998, Ms. Sperow opened the firm's Southern California office in San Diego where she continued to serve both her Bay Area and Southern California clients. Ms. Sperow was a member of the Greater San Diego Chamber of Commerce and served on the Chamber's Business Education Roundtable and Legislative Initiatives Subcommittee. Ruiz & Sperow retired its litigation practice in 2015 and the firm in 2018 but both named partners remain active in arbitrations, mediations, facilitation, and trainings.

Ms. Sperow served as an adjunct Professor of Law at USD teaching Legal writing, research and oral advocacy for the academic year 2004 to 2005. She returned as Director of the lawyers of skills program from 2006 to 2007 and as adjunct Professor of Law teacher of Advanced Legal Writing and Analysis from 2007 to 2017, Fundamentals of Bar Writing in 2011, and Legal Analysis of Criminal Procedure in 2009. In October 2016, Ms. Sperow joined Powers Grewal as of Counsel to advise on and evaluate civil claims. Ms. Sperow retired from USD in August 2017 and decided to turn her part-time service as a neutral since 1989 into a full time passion. Ms. Sperow is currently an arbitrator and/or mediator for the American Arbitration Association (AAA)'s commercial, large complex case, employment, mass claims, emerging technology, healthcare, pro se, intellectual property, appellate, expedited, workplace investigation,emergency relief, and consumer panels; the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (CPR)'s commercial, employment, labor, banking, financial services, pro bono, mediation, flat fee mediation, dispute prevention, and mass claims panels; the National Arbitration & Mediation Association (NAM)'s general, commercial, and employment panels; New Era ADR's commercial, employment, Title IX, and mediation rosters; the FORUM's commercial and employment panels, Resolute Systems, the National Futures Association (NFA), ROSE IPR Arbitration (intellectual property arbitrations), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), FINRA's consumer, securities, contract, employment, injunction, expungement, and discrimination panels, the Better Business Bureau (BBB)'s commercial, warranty, and automobile panels; the American Health Law Association Dispute Resolution (AHLA) healthcare panels; International Chamber of Commerce and US Chamber of International Business (ICC-USCIB) – international trade, commercial, and business disputes; and the Early Dispute Resolution Institute neutral roster. In 2018, Ms. Sperow was appointed as a Judge Pro Tem for the San Diego County Court and serves as an arbitrator and mediator on the San Diego Superior Court Civil Mediation Panel. In 2020, Janice was confirmed to a three-year term as a Hearing Officer for the Port of San Diego and in 2023, she was inducted as the Chair of Hearing Office. She also serves as a public Hearing Officer for the City & County of San Francisco, City of Oakland, and the City & County of Los Angeles. 
With a special interest in dispute prevention, Ms. Sperow serves frequently as a member of Dispute Resolution Boards (DRBs), having been certified by the Dispute Resolution Board Foundation, Cal-Trans, and CPR. She is also a certified Early Dispute Resolution neutral (EDR), a certified business relationship facilitator, and dispute prevention neutral. Inducted as a Fellow into the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) and as a member of the Academy of Court Appointed Neutrals (ACAN), Janice serves state and federal courts as a court-appointed neutral (formerly know as a special master). She is also a special master for the State Bar of California.

Case Experience

  • ADA Disability
  • Anti-Trust
  • Appellate
  • Automotive
  • Aviation
  • Banking & Finance
  • Business Dissolution
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Commercial/Business
  • Construction
  • Consumer Fraud
  • Contract Disputes
  • Cross Cultural
  • Debt Collections
  • Discrimination
  • Education
  • EEOC
  • Elder Abuse
  • Employment
  • Energy Sector (Oil/Gas)
  • Entertainment Sector
  • Franchise
  • Health Care
  • Industrial
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • International
  • Internet
  • Labor/Unions
  • Landlord/Tenant
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Lemon Law
  • Libel & Slander
  • Local Govt./Municipalities
  • Media & Communications
  • Medical Devices
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Premises Liability
  • Probate
  • Product Liability
  • Professional Fees
  • Professional Liability
  • Professional Malpractice
  • Professional Negligence
  • Property Damage
  • Public Policy
  • Securities
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Shareholder Disputes
  • Software
  • Technology
  • Telecommunications
  • Torts
  • Trademarks/Patents
  • Transportation
  • Unfair Competition
  • Utilities
  • Wage & Hour/FMLA


Trained & Certified as Dispute Resolution Board Member by DRBF, Caltrans, and CPR. Certified mediator trained in Early Dispute Resolution and dynamic mediation. Hundreds of hours of trainings both as faculty and participant on an extensive range of judicial, arbitration, dispute avoidance, dispute prevention, dispute resolution, and mediation topics offered by the AAA, ABA, ACAN, AHLA, CCA, Caltrans, CPR, DRBF, Early Dispute Resolution Institute, FINRA, NFA, BBB, ICC, New Era ADR, FBA, IDAC, NADN, SDCBA, NYCBA, USCIB, ICDR, NITA, & Court Arbitrator & Mediator organizations. See separate list of topics available upon request.

  • 2019-Present Online Dispute Resolution Training 
  • 2017-Present AAA Arbitrator Training
  • 2017-Present BBB Arbitrator Training
  • 2018-Present San Diego and Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Pro Tem Training
  • 1989-Present NASD & FINRA Arbitrator Training
  • 1983–86 University of California at San Francisco, Hastings College of Law. Graduated with Juris Doctorate summa cum laude, second out of over 400 students.
  • 1978–82 University of California at Berkeley. Graduated with Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude with High Honors
  • Janice Sperow has completed hundreds of hours of arbitrator, judicial, and mediator training through several associations including the ABA. A full list of topics and providers available upon request. 

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Chair, Hearing Officer, Port of San Diego, Personnel Advisory Board, 2020-present
  • Hearing Officer, City & County of San Francisco
  • Hearing Officer, City of Oakland,
  • Hearing Officer, Los Angeles
  • Arbitrator, Kaiser Permanente
  • former President of the National Association of Women Lawyers as well as previously Executive Board Member, Treasurer-Elect, and Health Care Committee Co-Chair.
  • American Bar Association, she served as Vice-Chair of the International Human Rights Litigation Subcommittee and was a member of Law Practice Management Section and Women Rainmakers Interest Group. Served on the ABA Commission of the Status of Women in the Law. Currently Member of the Business Law and Dispute Resolution Sections. 
  • Second Vice-President of the California Women Lawyers, as well as participating as a member of the Executive Committee, the Board of Governors, the Chair of CWL Health Care Task Force, and Educational Foundation.
  • Received the California Women Lawyers President’s Award.
  • Served as Chair of the California State Bar Litigation Section Education Committee.
  • Member and speaker for the San Diego County Bar Association
  • Fellow, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Global & North America Branch
  • National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, Member
  • Academy of Court-Appointed Neutrals, Member
  • Dispute Resolution Board Foundation (DRBF), member
  • American Health Law Association, Member
  • Early Dispute Resolution Institute, Member
  • International Association of Privacy Professionals, Member
  • American Bar Association Member, ABA Dispute Resolution, Labor & Employment Law, & Business Law Sections, Women Rainmakers
  • Federal Bar Association, Dispute Resolution At Large Board Member
  • International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution, Dispute Prevention Taskforce & Committee Member
  • Arbitral Women, Member
  • San Diego County Bar Association, Member, Dispute Resolution, Labor & Employment, Privacy & Cybersecurity, Intellectual Property, and Entertainment Law Sections
  • ADR Inclusion Network Speakers Bureau, Speaker
  • National Association of Women Lawyers, former President & Executive Board Member
  • California Women Lawyers, former Second Vice-President &, Executive Committee, Board of Governors Member, California Women Lawyers President’s Award

Rates Information

$600/hour as arbitrator and mediator preparation

Daily Rate for Hearing  and Mediation $6000.

Hourly rate charged for pre-hearing work.

No hearing charge if canceled 14 or more days from the first hearing date.

If canceled between 14 and 7 days from the first hearing date, retain 50%. If canceled less than 7 days before the first hearing date, retain hearing charge.

Willing to travel and do not charge for travel time. Charge for other locations' travel out-of-pocket expenses and hard costs if outside Greater San Diego area. No charge for parking or meals during arbitration unless out of San Diego area. Will seek reimbursement for air and hotel travel costs, if any, for locations outside the Greater San Diego area. Any charged expenses are at the out-of-pocket rate with no added surcharge; receipts will be provided if requested. With enough notice, always look for economical flights and lodging.

Academy Members Only