Michael H. Leb, Esq. has been a full-time neutral since 2008. He has nearly 30 years of broad-based legal experience with a unique blend of traditional labor law, litigation, and transactional expertise. He has practiced at Latham & Watkins, held senior executive positions with two Fortune 50 companies, and represented plaintiffs at a top-tier trial boutique and as a solo practitioner. His litigation experience includes both the trial and appellate work in public and private sector labor and employment law, including class actions, as well as federal and state court commercial litigation.
Michael possesses not only hands-on litigation experience – representing both plaintiffs and defendants in employment and commercial matters – but broad and deep business experience. He has held executive level staff positions as SVP – People for Wal-Mart and VP – Labor Relations. Michael has also had P & L responsibility as Safeway’s VP – Manufacturing where he lead the 44-plant, 2000 employee food-processing operation with annual sales of $3 billion. Most recently, Michael founded and served as CEO of Choctál LLC, a company selling single-origin, super-premium chocolate and vanilla ice cream through retail grocers across the United States.
Michael serves on the panel of Alternative Resolution Centers, the American Arbitration Association’s Employment Law Arbitration and Mediation Panels, the Los Angeles County Equity Oversight Panel, the Federal District Court Settlement Officer Panel, Arbitration Panel for City of Anaheim Police Department and APA. Michael has formerly served as a mediator for the Los Angeles, Ventura and Orange County Superior Courts, Special Mediator for the Clark County School District Grievance Adjustment Panel, and Hearing Officer for the City of Santa Monica. He has also mediated cases for the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Michael was selected by the City of Los Angeles as an arbitrator to rule on challenges in Neighborhood Council elections.
Michael has been an Adjunct Professor at Pepperdine University’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, a frequent speaker on ADR, and has published a number of articles on mediation and substantive law issues.
Michael is a cum laudegraduate of Yale and the University of Michigan Law School. He is conversant in Spanish and Italian and has some facility with Mandarin Chinese, Russian, French and Hebrew.