Debra Synovec, J.D.
Whole Mediation & Consulting Services, P.C.

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2420 8th Ave W
Seattle, WA 98119

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Description of Practice

This Mediator is Certified
Debra is a mediator providing comprehensive, divorce mediation, separation and family mediation services in Seattle, Bellevue, Bainbridge and the surrounding area. She combines her unique skills and experience acquired as a CPA, Certified Divorce Financial Analyst and Lawyer to address the legal and financial implications of her clients' situation in a respectful, compassionate environment where constructive dialogue can take place to transcend conflict. She is highly sensitive to the vulnerability of those seeking mediated solutions to problems that often evoke fear and loss. Debra is able to help guide clients to a positive outcome by blending compassion and pragmatism. In counterbalance to the emotional turmoil inherent in typical legal confrontations, Debra's mediation clients and colleagues experience a sense of trust in her abilities to understand their needs as she helps them tailor reasonable, unified settlements. Debra’s mediation process is client-centered and tailored to meet the objectives of each mediation engagement as defined by the clients. In addition to mediation, Debra provides various consulting services, trainings and acts as a mentor for other professional mediators.

Professional Background

Debra is an experienced professional mediator; she holds a J.D. from William Mitchell College of Law, a B.S. in Accounting from the University of Minnesota, and a B.A. in Social Work from St. Cloud State College and earned the designation of CPA. Debra is an Advanced Practitioner Member of the Association for Conflict Resolution and is a Collaborative Law Professional. She began working in mediation in 1988 after receiving training from Erickson Mediation Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She has taken numerous on-going mediation trainings including participation at the Harvard Negotiation Insight Initiative. Prior to beginning her practice in mediation Debra was the Chief Financial Officer for a national real estate consulting firm and practiced as a CPA.


Mediator providing divorce mediation, post divorce mediation, family mediation, estate planning mediation, employment mediation and business mediation for over 20 years. Her approach is holistic, combining compassion with pragmatism. She combines her unique skills acquired as an attorney, CPA, mediator, and social worker so clients solve issues in a constructive, open manner that meets the client’s needs as well as determines legal issues when appropriate.


William Mitchell College of Law, JD
University of Minnesota, BS Accounting
St. Cloud State University, BA Social Work


Dates    Trainer(s)    Title   
11/1988    Steve Erickson and Marilyn McKnight    40 Hour Divorce Mediation Training 40 hours
3/2002    Illinois State Board of Education    Special Education Mediation Training 10 hours
1/1996    CADRES    Civil Mediation Training 16 hours
6/2007     Ken Cloke Harvard Negotition Insight Initiative    Into the Heart of Conflict 40 hours
7/2009    CURS Institute    Peer Mediation Training 10 hours
2/2006    Pauline Tesler    Collaborative Law Training 12 hours
11/2006    Collaborative Divorce Team Training    Team Training 20 hours
8/2007    Joan Goldsmith    mediator as Leader 6 hours
3/15/2013    Joseph Shaub    Teamwork style 4 hours
5/3/2013    KCCL    Giving Clients Feedback 3.5 hours
6/10/2013    WSBA    De-Escalating Intense Emotions 1.5 hours
10/30/2013    Bill Eddy    Understanding and Managing HCP 6 hours


Debra tailors her mediation services and her style to meet the needs of the parties. She combines the facilitative and problem solving models to help the parties reach a sustainable agreement that resolves the designated issues.

Debra believes that this approach allows self-determination and empowerment of the parties. Her mediation approach is client-centered, allowing the parties to proceed in their own direction and at their own pace so that the process meets their unique needs.

Debra uses various procedures and techniques so that clients are able to have a more constructive dialogue and outcome. She uses rules and intervention techniques to help the parties define issues, gather information, develop options, evaluate solutions and structure an agreement.


Fees are paid at an hourly rate determined by the type of services.

Debra offers a one hour initial consultation at no cost for divorce and family dissolution cases involving financial issues. The purpose of the consultation is to review the mediation procedures and to determine whether mediation is an appropriate method for the parties to use to dissolve their marriage or domestic partnership.

Other Information

Biznik - Business Networking


Areas of Practice

  • Adult Family
  • Business
  • Civil (general)
  • Commercial
  • Congregational
  • Construction
  • Contracts
  • Criminal
  • Cross Cultural
  • Divorce (all issues)
  • Divorce (parenting)
  • Education
  • Elder
  • Employment
  • Estate Planning
  • Family
  • Franchise
  • Insurance
  • Land Use
  • Landlord - Tenant
  • Legal Malpractice
  • Organizational
  • Partnership
  • Personal Injury
  • Probate
  • Professional Fees
  • Public Policy
  • Real Estate
  • Securities
  • Special Education
  • Tax
  • Trust Management
  • Victim - Offender
  • Workplace

Professional Services

  • Mediator
  • Mediation Consultant
  • Mediation Trainer
  • Conflict Coach
  • Advanced Mediation Trainer
  • Mediating Lawyer
  • Collaborative Professional
  • Facilitator
  • Communication Skills Trainer
  • Estate Planner

References available upon request.

This dispute resolution professional keeps professional liability insurance.