Who We Are

John S. Burton,

Mediator John Burton headshot

Mr. Burton received his Associate of Arts degree from Santa Rosa Junior College in 1969, Bachelor of Arts Degree from Santa Clara University in 1971 and Juris Doctorate (JD), Summa Cum Laude, from Santa Clara University School of Law in 1974. He received mediator training at Straus Institute For Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University School of Law (August, 2013). Mr. Burton has been a presence in the Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay community for over 40 years.

Mr. Burton is a member of the State Bar of California, admitted to practice in all California State Courts in 1974, as well as the United States District Courts for the Northern and Eastern Districts of California and the United States Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit. He is also member of the following organizations:

  • Santa Cruz County Bar Association
  • Fresno County Bar Association
  • Monterey County Bar Association

He has been identified as one of the Northern California Super Lawyers for the past several years. Mr. Burton was President of the Santa Cruz County Bar Association (2014). Mr. Burton has been named as an AV Preeminent lawyer, the highest possible rating for an attorney, by Martindale Hubbell Law Directory (5.0). AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment achieved by only a small percentage of attorneys in the State of California, and a testament to the fact that Mr. Burton’s peers grade him at the highest level of professional excellence.

Beginning in December, 1974, Mr. Burton practiced law, emphasizing civil litigation until his retirement from that aspect of his practice in December 2020. He was honored to have a diverse client base, which included insurers, major corporations, attorneys, real estate professionals, individual Plaintiffs and Defendants, as well as local businesses. He handled cases associated with claims relating to the purchase and/or sale of real estate, partnership disputes, personal injury, including those arising from auto accidents, big rig trucking accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, premises liability, products liability, slips/trips and falls, and dog bites, legal malpractice, professional negligence, home fire and property damage claims, construction disputes, construction defects, and insurance claims. Mr. Burton tried in excess of 50 jury trials and additional court trials in Courts throughout Northern California. He also served as appellate counsel in several matters in the Sixth District Court of Appeal.

Beginning in 2010, he included into his practice Monterey Bay Mediation and served as private mediator and binding arbitrator in hundreds of cases. Mr. Burton has been appointed and successfully served as Discovery Referee by the Santa Cruz and Monterey Superior Courts. In the past, he served as pro tem settlement judge in Santa Cruz Superior Court and on the panel of arbitrators in the Santa Clara Superior Court non-binding judicial arbitration program.

In January, 2021, Mr. Burton shifted the entire focus of his practice and exclusively provides Mediation, Arbitration, Discovery Referee and ADR Services, continuing under the name of Monterey Bay Mediation throughout Northern and Central California, with emphasis on disputes and actions pending in the Counties of Santa Cruz, Monterey, San Benito, Santa Clara, Fresno, Tulare, Kings, Madera, and Merced. Mr. Burton is skilled in the utilization of all forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), arbitration, and mediation, and as Discovery Referee under the auspices of the Court.