Levin College of Law

Joan Stearns Johnsen

Master Lecturer and Master Legal Skills Professor

(352) 273-2739


Joan Stearns Johnsen specializes in Alternative Dispute Resolution related skills including negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. Professor Johnsen also coaches the International Commercial Arbitration Moot Court Competition Team, is the co-faculty advisor to the ADR Teams, and is the Director of the Institute for Dispute Resolution.

Professor Johnsen has over thirty years’ experience mediating and arbitrating matters including banking and financial, employment, health law, and other large and complex commercial matters and her teaching reflects her expansive practical experience and expertise. She is on numerous dispute resolution panels including the arbitration and mediation panels of the American Arbitration Association, the International Center for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (“CPR”), and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”). Professor Johnsen is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, (“FCIArb”), is certified by the International Mediation Institute, (“IMI”), and accredited by the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (“CEDR”).

Professor Johnsen began her career as an Enforcement Attorney for the Commodity Futures Commission in Washington, DC and worked in-house as Associate General Counsel for the Commodity Exchange, Inc. (now a Designated Contract Market within the CME Group) and as Assistant Commodities Counsel for Smith Barney (now Morgan Stanley Wealth Management) both in New York.

Professor Johnsen is a leader in the dispute resolution field. She is a past Chair of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution, a member of the CPR Council, Executive Vice Chair of the International Bar Association Mediation Committee, and an academic board member of the Miami International Arbitration Society. Professor Johnsen also is a leader in the emerging area of Dispute Prevention and is the 2023 recipient of the James P. Groton Award Outstanding Leadership in Dispute Prevention by the Conflict Prevention and Resolution Institute (March 3, 2023), which recognizes a person or organization who has contributed significantly to the development and/or practice of dispute prevention.


J.D., Case Western Reserve University School of Law
B.A., French Literature and Language, Northwestern University


  • Arbitration Law
  • Mediation Advocacy
  • Negotiation