Renée O. LaPoint, M.S.

Renée is President of the New York State Council on Divorce Mediation (NYSCDM) and is an accredited member of the State Council; an organization dedicated to providing professional mediation services to the public and offering quality continuing education to its members. She received her training in Divorce and Family Mediation from the Center for Mediation and Training in New York City. She is also certified by the Center for Dispute Settlement and the Unified Court System to mediate court-referred cases. She is the former President of the Rochester Association of Family Mediators and a member of the Academy of Professional Family Mediators. Renee is also involved with and trained in Restorative Justice Initiatives.

Renée has been trained as a collaborative facilitator to work as a neutral with couples who decide to use the Collaborative Law Process for their separation/divorce. She serves on the Board of Directors for CLARA, the Collaborative Law Association of the Rochester Area, and chairs the Education Committee. She is also a member of the IACP, International Association of Collaborative Professionals.

Renée was recently asked to join the A.C.T for the Children team. A volunteer group of mental health professionals, judges and attorneys who provide divorcing or separating parents with information and strategies to help their children and themselves through the often difficult family changes caused by a divorce or separation.

She earned her Master’s Degree in Counseling and Administration from Syracuse University and her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Skidmore College.

Renée has over 20 years of experience in helping people resolve relationship issues. Renée has used divorce mediation herself and has first-hand knowledge and experience of conflict and divorce, the mediation process, and its advantages. Her personal experience can help you by truly relating to your situation. She understands because she has been through it. She also understands blended family issues and relationship challenges that couples and families face every day.

“My personal philosophy for working with couples, individuals and families in mediation, is that people are capable of making their own decisions. My job is to facilitate that process and be sure they are making informed choices. You know your life and situation the best and should control the decisions you make regarding your life, but you need all the information to make those decisions. Mediation is wonderful because it gives people the power and control to do what’s best for their special situation and customize agreements, rather than having attorneys and judges deciding for you. Mediation is about empowerment, respect and choice.”

“My three children are doing wonderfully post-divorce. I attribute that to the communication and cooperation that my ex-husband and I have. That model of a positive approach was driven by our experience with the mediation process. I believe strongly in the power of the mediation process. You have the power to choose a positive future for you and your children. Your success within mediation will reap rewards for you and your family indefinitely. Everyone wins, especially the children.” Studies indicate that the success of children post-divorce is directly related to how well the parents (ex-spouses) can co-parent and get along.