Neutral Profile



  • Based in Orange County, available in All of California
  • Available for Mediation only


Since 2007, Gary has been a full-time neutral and has successfully mediated over 4,000 civil matters.

During his more than 25 years as a trial lawyer, Mr. Donovan represented both defendants and plaintiffs in all types of civil matters. Since the early 1990s, he has served as a mediator, arbitrator, and Temporary Judge for both the Orange County Superior Court and Riverside County Superior Court. It was during that time he discovered his passion for meditating. Subsequently, to make a full-time ADR commitment, Mr. Donovan underwent intensive training from the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University.

As a mediator, he is a very effective communicator and is resourceful and persistent in striving to resolve each case. Those qualities are the reasons why both plaintiff and defense attorneys often select him. One attorney commented, "Gary did a great job bringing many parties together on a mutually beneficial settlement. I look forward to working with him again in the future."

Practice Areas

  • Aviation
  • Products Liability
  • Premises Liability
  • Vehicle Liability
  • Employment
  • Real Property
  • Construction Defect
  • Homeowner’s Disputes
  • Business Contractual

Hobbies & Interests

Gary enjoys hockey, motorcycles, boats, skiing, drums, and airplanes.



"I appreciate the difference that Gary made on this case. I am spreading the word in the office about our great experience with him and I look forward to working with him in the future."
- Attorney, Los Angeles County, California

"Gary Donovan is creative and tenacious. He didn't quit until we had a deal and provided an excellent follow-up post-mediation."
- Attorney, Los Angeles County, California

"Gary is an outstanding mediator and deserves all the credit for getting this case settled. I am grateful for all the hard work and time put in on the case."
- Attorney, Newport Beach, California

"Gary Donovan is excellent."
- Attorney on a Premises Liability case

"I wanted to express my gratitude to Gary Donovan for his smooth handling of the mediation."
- Attorney, Orange County, California

"I wanted to express my thanks to Gary in getting this case settled. He's a great mediator and this showed in his work on this case. I will not hesitate to use his services to help my clients settle their cases in the future."
- Attorney, San Diego County, California

"Very persistent and creatively broke an impasse between the parties."
- Attorney on an Elder Abuse/Medical Malpractice Matter

"Mr. Donovan is a very good mediator and works very hard at trying to resolve disputes/matters. In the mediations I have had with him, I have always been satisfied with his services."
- Attorney on a Personal Injury Dangerous Conditions Catastrophic case

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Experience Summary

Legal Career

  • Mediator, Judicate West (2007-Present)
  • Mediator, TLC Resolutions (2002-Present)
  • Mediator, Riverside County Bar Dispute Resolution Service (2001-2014)
  • Temporary Judge, Riverside County Superior Court (2001-2007)
  • Arbitrator and Temporary Judge, Orange County Superior Court (1992-2007)
  • Partner, Donovan & Draheim (1994-2007)
  • Partner, Donovan & Quilligan (1987-1994)
  • Associate, Wood, Ward & Garnett (1983-1987)
  • Associate, Thomas & Price (1981-1983)
  • Hill, Genson, Even, Crandall & Wade (1978-1981)

Education & Professional Affiliations

  • J. D., Southwestern University School of Law (1981)
  • B.A., Economics, Fordham University, Bronx, New York (1977)
  • Pepperdine University, School of Law - Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, “Mediating the Litigated Case” (2001)
  • Orange County Trial Lawyers Association (OCTLA), Affiliate Member (2008-Present)
  • Consumer Attorneys of Los Angeles (CAALA) (2001-Present)
  • California Real Estate Broker (1998)
  • F.A.A. Licensed Private Pilot (1991)
  • Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (1988-Present)
  • Orange County and Riverside Bar Associations, Member

Achievements & Awards

  • Mr. Donovan has been an AV-rated attorney listed in the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register since 1989.

Legal Experience

  • Aviation
  • Products Liability
  • Premises Liability
  • Vehicle Liability
  • Employment
  • Real Property
  • Construction Defect
  • Homeowner’s Disputes
  • Business Contractual

Recent Representative Cases