The quality of our lives
depends not on whether or not we have conflicts,
but on how we respond to them.

TOM CRUM

About Debra

Debra’s unique mediation experience, knowledge, compassion, and pragmatism will empower you to create your own divorce solutions

Debra Synovec, founder of Whole Mediation & Consulting Services, brings a wealth of professional credentials and experience to her clients. She is a lawyer, a certified public accountant, divorce financial analyst, and a social worker. As such, she stands out as uniquely qualified among her peers in providing a wide range of professional services for complex financial and family matters.

Debra understands that while divorce is an emotional life transition, it does not have to be challenging, lengthy, or bitter. She recognizes that the traditional approaches, such as litigation, arbitration, and settlement conferences, only serve to divide people, resulting in an adversarial situation that pits family members against each other; Debra helps people shed traditional methods and aim for higher ground. Debra is devoted to changing how conflict is commonly handled so that people feel empowered to create their own viable, sustainable solutions for their divorce and family transition. In counterbalance to the emotional turmoil inherent in typical legal confrontations, Debra’s clients and colleagues experience a sense of trust in her abilities to understand their needs as she helps them tailor reasonable, unified agreements.

Debra views conflict as solvable and an opportunity for constructive change. With compassion and pragmatism, she guides her clients through the legal, financial, and emotional issues common in divorce and family transition. She helps her clients engage in meaningful conversations that give all parties a voice in crafting outcomes that reflect their personal circumstances. Unlike court-imposed resolutions, such mediated and collaborative agreements are sustainable over time because clients avoid the need to revisit decisions that were made without sufficient consideration of all points of view.

Expertise

Debra has been providing enlightened, expert mediation services since 1987. In her diverse practice, she has incorporated her skills as a mediator, divorce financial analyst, collaborative law practitioner, and divorce advisor, with the overall goal of avoiding unnecessary and costly litigation. Her mission is to empower her clients to discard the conventional litigation methods in favor of a cooperative and collaborative approach that benefits all parties.

Qualifications

Debra trained at Erickson Mediation Institute in 1987, where she earned the designation of advanced practitioner member of the Association for Conflict Resolution. She is an advanced practitioner and founding member, as well as former board member and treasurer, of the Academy of Professional Family Mediators, the leading organization dedicated to professional family mediation. She continually takes advanced professional trainings, including the Harvard Negotiation Insight Initiative, mediation trainings, divorce financial analyst trainings, and collaborative law trainings. In addition to her background in mediation and dispute resolution, for over 18 years Debra was a practicing attorney and CPA, working for individuals and small businesses.

Memberships

  • Academy of Professional Family Mediators (founding member, former board member, and advanced practitioner member)
  • Association for Conflict Resolution (advanced practitioner member)
  • Institute for Certified Divorce Financial Analysts
  • Collaborative Professionals of Washington
  • International Association of Collaborative Professionals
  • Washington State Bar Association (former chair of the Alternative Dispute Resolution section)
  • King County Bar Association

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