person with blonde hair shoulder length wearing a dress shirt and jacket

Professor Karen P. Fernbach, Esq.


Karen P. Fernbach comes to Mediation Solutions with an extensive career in alternative dispute resolution and has devoted her entire career as a neutral to the practice of labor & employment law. She received her formal training in arbitration and mediation by the American Arbitration Association which selected her as a Higginbotham Fellow, a widely acclaimed Fellowship Program that encourages greater diversity in the selection of mediators and arbitrators. In 2019, she was appointed by the American Arbitration Association as a labor arbitrator/mediator and placed on their panel. She is also on the Arbitration Panel for Local 32BJ, SEIU and the Building & Realty Institute of Westchester. She has been selected for numerous labor arbitrations in both the private and public sector.

Professor Fernbach is also a trained mediator with experience mediating employment disputes. She has been working in the area of labor and employment law since 1977, when she began working with the Manhattan Region of the National Labor Relations Board. In 2012, she was appointed as Regional Director of the Manhattan Region. As Regional Director, her achievements and outstanding leadership in government service were also recognized by the Office of Personnel Management which selected her as a member of the Federal Senior Executive Service.

Throughout her distinguished career at the NLRB, she successfully resolved hundreds of labor management disputes by meeting with the parties that appeared before her and conducting numerous settlement conferences, including many high-profile cases within the metropolitan New York City area covering her jurisdiction.

While employed by the NLRB, she also mediated employment disputes as a member of the Federal Shared Neutrals Program for employees working in the federal sector. She also received training as a volunteer mediator under the auspices of the EEOC Mediation Office in New York City. In 2017, she retired from the NLRB and was hired by Hofstra University, Maurice A. Deane School of Law as a Visiting Assistant Professor.

At Hofstra Law, Professor Fernbach teaches classes in labor law, employment law, and collective bargaining.  She is also a co-advisor for the Hofstra University, Maurice A. Deane School of Law, Journal of Labor & Employment Law.

Throughout her career, she has achieved numerous promotions, awards, and recognition for her outstanding federal public service. In 2015, she was selected by her peers as a fellow of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers, an honorary legal organization that recognizes only the most accomplished members of the labor and employment law community and which promotes the highest standards of professionalism and civility in the practice of labor and employment law.

Professor Fernbach is a member of the American Bar Association, Executive Board Member of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the NYS Bar Association, Executive Board Member of the Long Island Chapter of LERA, (Labor Employment Relations Association) and a member of the NYC Chapter of LERA.

As Co-Chair of the CLE Committee of the Labor & Employment Section of the New York State Bar, she has networked with labor & employment lawyers throughout New York State to develop topical legal education conferences that highlight the legal changes and current hot button issues in the labor & employment law practice of law. Ms. Fernbach has been a presenter at many of these conferences as well as coordinating them.  She has similarly presented at and coordinated the annual Spring Conference run by the LI Chapter of LERA and attended by attorneys practicing labor & employment law on Long Island.

Ms. Fernbach graduated from St. John’s University School of Law in 1977 with honors as a member of the St. John’s Law Review.  Throughout her career, she has been active in her profession. She has lectured before many groups on current labor and employment issues affecting both labor and management. These organizations include the Labor Employment Relations Association (LERA) both the Long Island and New York City Chapters, the NYS Bar Association, the NYC Bar Association, the Practicing Law Institute, the American Bar Association, the Cornell Institute of Labor Relations and the Hofstra Labor Studies Program.

Professor Fernbach is available to mediate cases virtually or at our Main office and New York City office.

Mediating Cases In:

  • Labor and Employment Law


Fellow, College of Labor & Employment Lawyers (2015-present)

Memberships and Professional Activities

American Bar Association

NYS Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section

  • Executive Board Member
  • Co-Chair, CLE Committee

LERA, (Labor Employment Relations Association), Executive Board Member, LI Chapter

LERA, NYC Chapter

Professional Experience

National Labor Relations Board, Manhattan Region (1977-2017)

  • Regional Director, Manhattan Region (2012-2017)

St. John’s University School of Law, Adjunct Professor (2012-present)

Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University, Visiting Assistant Professor (2017-present)

Certified AAA Arbitrator and Mediator, American Arbitration Association (2019-Present)


St. John’s University School of Law, J.D., 1977

New York State University at Albany, B.A., 1973