Donald Saposnek PhD

DONALD T. SAPOSNEK, Ph.D. is a clinical-child psychologist, child custody mediator, and family therapist in private practice for over 40 years.

Dr. Saposnek is the author of the classic 1983 book, Mediating Child Custody Disputes: A Systematic Guide for Family Therapists, Court Counselors, Attorneys, and Judges and the revised 1998 book, Mediating Child Custody Disputes: A Strategic Approach  and co-author of the 2012 book, Splitting America: How Politicians, Super PACs and the News Media Mirror High Conflict Divorce (Scottsdale, AZ: HCI Press). As director of Family Mediation Service of Santa Cruz, he managed the family court services for 17 years and has mediated over 5,000 child custody disputes in both the public and private sectors since 1977.

He is the past editor of the international Academy of Family Mediators' Mediation News, the international Association for Conflict Resolution's Family Mediation News, and is a Founding Board Member of the international Academy of Professional Family Mediators and Editor of The Professional Family Mediator. He has published extensively in the professional literature on child custody and child psychology and serves on the editorial boards of the Family Court Review and Conflict Resolution Quarterly journals.

He is a national and international trainer of mediation and teacher of child development, Adjunct Professor at Pepperdine University School of Law's Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and, for the past 36 years, has been teaching on the psychology faculty at the University of California at Santa Cruz. Dr. Saposnek is the recipient of the Association for Conflict Resolution's John M. Haynes Distinguished Mediator Award, the Monterey Bay Psychological Association's Outstanding Psychologist Award, and the California Psychological Association's Award for Distinguished Contribution to Psychology as a Profession.

Dr. Saposnek is the author of numerous articles and several books, including:

  • Splitting America: How Politicians, Super PACs and the News Media Mirror High Conflict Divorce
  • Mediating Child Custody Disputes: A Systematic Guide for Family Therapists, Court Counselors, Attorneys, and Judges

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