Caroline Petrilla

Adjunct Professor

Contact Information

V: (609)292-1773

Courses Recently Taught


Caroline M. Petrilla has provided expert mediation services with the New Jersey Office of Dispute Settlement for the past 20 years, in recent years serving as its Assistant Director until April 2011. In addition to mediating well over a thousand civil court cases, hundreds of foreclosure cases and numerous pre-litigation matters including internal employee disputes, she has extensive experience in providing a full range of ADR services including conflict management training and designing and administering dispute resolution programs.

 Ms Petrilla’s extensive mediation experience spans the spectrum of civil litigation including personal injury, commercial, contract, construction and insurance coverage matters.  She is one of the state’s most prominent employment mediators. She has served as court appointed mediator in several complex multi-party public policy cases including intergovernmental infrastructure disputes -successfully addressing public safety concerns and saving stakeholders millions of dollars.  Her mediation assistance in resolving a major contract dispute between New Jersey’s largest health insurance provider and a network of inner city hospitals prevented a potential crisis for thousands of residents needing medical care.

Ms. Petrilla has provided extensive ADR training to thousands of public and private sector employees, including hundreds of court roster mediators, lawyers and judges. She was instrumental in launching New Jersey’s mortgage foreclosure mediation program.  She helped create the state’s agricultural mediation program; developed a nationally recognized mediation procedure for the siting of group homes, and managed a court sanctioned medical malpractice mediation pilot.  In conjunction with the Princeton Woodrow Wilson School of Policy and International Affairs, she organized a regionally acclaimed conference on school based conflict management initiatives.  She has facilitated statewide public policy debates on a wide range of volatile environmental issues including wildlife management.


A frequent presenter on mediator quality and ethics and published author on dispute resolution processes, Ms. Petrilla earned her M.A. degree in Administration from Rider College and J.D. degree from Rutgers University School of Law in Camden, where she has served over the past ten years as an adjunct ADR law professor. She is also an adjunct professor with Rutgers University School of Environmental and Biological Sciences where she has developed conflict management curricula for its Leadership Program. She provides private mediation services as a member of Rutgers Camden Law School’s roster of expert mediators.  As a communications consultant, she is working part-time with an international youth advocacy organization.  Ms. Petrilla is a member of the American Bar Association, N.J. State Bar Association, NJSBA Section on Dispute Resolution and the National Association of Professional Women.  She served on the New Jersey Supreme Court Rules Committee on Complementary Dispute Resolution for over 10 years and most recently chaired its Subcommittee on Education.   She has received various commendations including the NJ State Bar Association 2009 James Boskey ADR Practitioner of the Year Award, Who’s Who in Law Academia 2005 and a New Jersey Legislative Resolution in appreciation of her expertise in conflict management and cross-cultural communications. 


"A Wonderland of Possibilities: Emotive Mediation of Employment Disputes," Presented at New Jersey Institute for Continuing Education Seminar on Reasonable Accommodation Under the ADA & NJLAD: Update 2002.

"The New Jersey Office of Dispute Settlement: Your Rx for Resolving Conflict," published in New Jersey Municipalities, Vol.80 No.5, May 2003.

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