The University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law Wallace Stegner Center for Land, Resources and the Environment welcomed Nedra Chandler as the Associate Director of the Environmental Dispute Resolution (EDR) Program during the 2019-2020 academic year.
“Nedra brings a wealth of experience and wisdom from decades of work as a facilitator, mediator, collaborative process designer, trainer, and coach,” said Danya Rumore, Director of the Center’s Environmental Dispute Resolution Program and Research Associate Professor. “As anyone who has the opportunity to work with her will experience, she has a particular knack for helping groups, teams, and individuals dig deep to productively work through conflict and develop their collaboration skills.”
Nedra’s favorite work is serving as a bridge and connector between what people are willing and ready to do on their own, and what they can effectively commit to when they have the support of collaborative learning opportunities or other tailored processes that fit the unique needs at hand.
She is currently using principles of adult development, Liberating Structures, applied neuroscience and group facilitation to prevent conflict at the source. She assists government leaders and teams as developmental partners to one another while they move through inevitable conflict and find ways they want to shift their practices in order to be better, together. Government, industry & nonprofit parties benefit through purposeful and lively learning partnerships designed by the EDR Program.
“I’m especially energized as I enter my second year as associate director of the EDR Program,” said Chandler. “Deep challenges always create opportunity for awareness, making choices, and practicing the inner habits and the outer skills of collaboration. Nurturing cultures of collaboration has been the core of our purpose at the EDR Program since we were founded in 2012. I am proud to be part of this quest. This past year I have continued to serve as a teacher and development partner to our Short Course participants and graduates, and for innovative government leaders and teams – especially in the National Park Service, but also in higher ed and state government.”
Over the last 3 decades, Chandler served as an impartial facilitator or mediator for more than 300 intergovernmental environmental conflicts in the western US and nationally. She has worked on issues related to tribal, federal and state land management, oil and gas, water issues of all kinds, fisheries, Superfund cleanup, possible dam removal, winter use in Yellowstone National Park, wildlife management, various facilitative work in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, tribal-federal pesticides regulation, and many health policy issues.
She has a Master of Arts in geography from the University of Washington and a graduate certificate in public health from the University of Montana. She is on the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution’s National Roster of Conflict Resolution Professionals and Native Network. She is an accomplished facili-trainer using online and collaborative technologies – especially Zoom. As an International Coach Federation-credentialed coach, she is a mentor coach for fellow professionals.
Chandler served as a Senior Associate at Triangle Associates from 1990-97 and again from 2013-19. Triangle has a 40 plus year history of serving as third party professionals for environmental and natural resource conflict. During part of that time, she also served as a court-connected mediator in King County District Court for small claims disputes. Chandler was the principal mediator and professional conflict coach for Cadence Inc. from 2002-2019. Past state government roles include her 7 years at the Montana Consensus Council (a state office of dispute resolution) connected to the Governor’s Office, and then the Department of Administration — she served there as mediator and then co-director until 2004. Chandler mediated discrimination claims for the Montana Department of Labor’s Human Rights Bureau from 2004-2009. She is delighted now to be at the University of Utah to continue growing and offering her experience at the Stegner Center’s EDR Program.