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The Werner Institute

Building a bridge between conflict resolution and the issues facing us.

The mission of the Werner Institute is to be a leading center for the study and advancement of conflict resolution with a focus on preparing the next generation of practitioners and scholars to engage differences and resolve disputes effectively, efficiently, and humanely. A valuable addition to Creighton University’s rich academic landscape, the Institute helps those in business, government, healthcare, and communities manage disputes, reduce costs of conflict, and gain from collaboration. Consistent with Creighton’s mission, the Werner Institute seeks to educate men and women who are not only proficient in conflict resolution but who are enlivened with a spirit of service and emboldened to create a more just world.

The Werner Institute was established in 2005, thanks to a generous gift from the family of Creighton University alumna Gail Werner-Robertson.

The Werner Institute sponsors several student competition teams to help them continue learning and refining their skills through participation at regional, national and international competitions. These competitions allow students to experience the non-litigation side of law practice.

Recent competition success:

  • #3 Mediator Team Recognition and #8 Individual Best Mediator for 3L Peyton Stagemeyer at InterNational Alternative Dispute Resolution Mediation Competition - 2021. 
  • #2 ABA Client Counseling National Competition - 2020. 

Werner Board

The Werner Board is an extension of the Werner Institute at Creighton School of Law. The Board supports the mission of the Werner Institute to be a leading center for the study and advancement of conflict resolution by bringing in unique speakers to provide students with interesting perspectives regarding alternative dispute resolution.

Additionally, the Board partners with different student societies and sponsors engaging events for students, Creighton graduates, and other members of the alternative dispute workforce.

To receive details about upcoming speakers and events, email the Werner Institute Director, Rachel Goedken (

St. Ben Bartholomew
"The Werner Institute helps the Omaha community by developing future advocates and teaching them ways to keep clients out of court. This improves efficiency of resolving conflicts, lowers legal costs, and helps clients avoid public scrutiny due to the nature of public trials."
— St. Ben Bartholomew, Third-year law student, co-president
McKade Loe
"Taking classes at Creighton Law's Werner Institute has given me the opportunity to participate on different teams, as well as countless opportunities to work on my negotiation skills. Outside of the Law School, I have been able to use the skills I learned in class in the real world."
— McKade Loe, Third-year law student, co-president
Rachel Goedken
“These competitions allow students to refine skills they will use as lawyers and introduce them to other law students from around the country and world.”- RACHEL GOEDKEN, JD
— Rachel Goedken, JD, Werner Institute Director

2021 Creighton Law Review Symposium Recap

Symposium Zoom Slide with Participants

On Feb. 26. 2021, Creighton School of Law and the Creighton Law Review presented the annual Creighton Law Review Symposium virtually.  The event celebrated the Werner Institute’s 15th anniversary, and the topic was Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Business Setting.

The Creighton Law Dean, Joshua Fershée and Creighton University’s Provost, Mardell Wilson, recognized Gail Werner-Robertson, whose family’s gift helped establish the Werner Institute 15 years. She continues to remain active in Institute that helps teach the next generation of negotiators, mediators and arbitrators to resolve disputes effectively and productively.

The event continued with Rachel Goedken, Director of the Werner Institute, moderating and speaking on several panels throughout the afternoon with panelists from all around the country who discussed relevant and timely topics including:

  • How to get the best negotiation results
  • How to effectively mediate and arbitrate online
  • The recent arbitration law updates and trends
  • How to mitigate risk in drafting arbitration clauses

Overall, this Creighton Law Review Symposium had over 480 participants in attendance, which was the most for any in-person and virtual symposia, as well as CLE events in recent memory.