Stan Posthumus, MSW JD APM, a relationship specialist, has been working with families to build and reconstruct relationships for over 20 years. Stanley was born and raised in South Africa and while working in a law firm, he realized that the adversarial divorce system was detrimental to both parties and there had to be a better way. Combining his background in Science, Social Work and Law, he spent years working with couples fine-tuning the process he called Focused Thinking Mediation.
Stanley moved with his family to New Jersey, in 1995 and developed a successful mediation practice, helping couples across around the world. He also teaches mediators, professionals and couples at workshops and shares his ideas at numerous local and international conferences.
Professional Accreditation and Affiliations
Stan is accredited as an advanced practitioner mediator with NJAPM and ACR having undergone the required 40 hour training class for family mediators. He has also presented this class.
Stan Posthumus' Professional Affiliations include:
Education and Legal and Social Work Experience
Stan Posthumus studied social work and law at the University of Natal, South Africa. The USA equivalents are:
- MSW (Master of Social Work)
- JD (Juris Doctorate)
He put his Social Work degree into practice working with juvenile offenders and rehabilitating dysfunctional families as a family social worker, and with the SA Defense Force as a military Welfare Officer for troops and their families.
While studying for his law degree he obtained valuable experience working in a law firm specializing in Family Court cases especially divorce.
Mediation Experience and Specialties
Stan is occupied full-time with mediation and researching relationships. This work includes mainly mediating divorce and family related matters.
- Stan has run his private mediation practice since 1989 - he has mediated over 2,000 divorce cases
- Successfully mediated hundreds of the most difficult kinds of family disputes – both private and Court referred clients
- Clients include ambassadors, senators, company executives and people from all walks of life.
- Nearly all disputes settled and virtually no disputants return to litigation
- Many of those in divorce litigation reconcile spontaneously
- Please read / watch the client references to see what past clients have to say about how Stan has helped them with their marriages and divorce settlements.
- Developed and researched Focused Thinking Mediation over 25 years. This process uses language as a technology to enable people to be ‘who they want to be’ through their communication with self and others, to build resilient relationships, master personal and inter-personal change and to resolve conflict in a way that is constructive for their relationships. Many divorcing couples who learn and apply this technology reconcile and maintain lasting healthy and happy relationships.
- Stan worked with the Detroit Family Courts in a study to monitor the effects of Focused Thinking Mediation on extremely high conflict cases in Family Court, Detroit, MI. Please refer to Judge Brown's commentary on this study on the reference page.
- Published various papers on mediation, and is currently writing a book on Focused Thinking Mediation. Stan has also appeared on local TV documentaries about mediation.
- Stan's powerful mediation methods have been filmed by a professional crew and are currently being edited into a real-life, unscripted movie about a couple facing divorce. The mediator's transparent approach leaves viewers with communication, relationship, change and conflict relationship skills of their own.
Mediation and Relationships Skills Trainer
Stan Posthumus has trained many professionals to become family mediators since 1989 in NJ, NY, NH, WI, MA, KY, and South Africa.
- Trainees include attorneys, psychologists, mental health professionals, educators, and students.
- Training offered includes basic and advanced mediation skills using hands-on and advanced video techniques. Training ranges from 1-2 hour introduction sessions to 40 hour courses.
- If you are interested in being trained as a mediator please contact Stan Posthumus for more information.
He has presented papers and workshops on Focused Thinking mediation and relationships building at various national and international conferences for professionals in the Alternate Dispute resolution field, including:
- World Mediation Forum: (WMF) Sardinia, Italy (2000); Buenos Aires, Argentina (2002)
- Administration for Children and Families, Working Together to Strengthen Families Conference, Pacific Hub, Seattle, Washington (2002)
- Four Universities, invited by Chief Family Court Judge McMahon New Zealand (2002)
- National Conference of the Children's Rights Council (13th), Bethesda, MD (2001)
- National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC) Atlanta, GA (2000)
- International Peer Helpers Association (NPHA) Boston, MA (2000)
- Conference for Peer Mediators (NCEF) Gorham, NH (2000)
- Academy of Family Mediators: (AFM) now (ACR) San Francisco, CA; Salt Lake City, UT 1998, 2000
- National Conference on Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution (1979); Phoenix, AZ; Pittsburgh, PA (1999)
- NY State National Conference on Dispute Resolution: Rochester, NY 1998
- New York State Conference (sponsored by NYSDRA): Suffern, NY 1997
- Smart Marriages Conference (six states) 1998 - 2004
He has presented workshops and given talks as a guest lecturer at several universities including:
- Sullivan University, Louisville, KY (2008)
- Columbia University, New York, NY (1996)
- Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY (1997)
- Albany Law School, Albany, NY (1997)
- Focused Thinking Masters level, Plymouth State, NH (1998 - 2001) Advanced Conflict Resolution for high school and adult educators
- Boards of Education, High School, Middle School
- Family Court Judges, Detroit, MI; Lansing, MI
- Legislature, Lansing, MI
- Leadership Development Institute, Madison, WI
- Church Organizations, US and Canada
- Not-For-Profit Organization, KY