Frances Maynard – A Tribute

CEDR are incredibly sad at the passing of its friend and mediator, and colleague Frances Maynard.

Frances Maynard was a one-of-a-kind person and a trailblazer for mediation in the UK.

She was the sort of person where you cannot use too many adjectives to describe her and her many achievements – just a few used by her clients are clever, engaging, thoughtful, calm, creative, measured, brave, compassionate, fair, subtle, effective, understanding, generous and brilliant.

Frances was the first non-lawyer commercial mediator in the UK to reach the top of the profession, and one of the first women to reach the top as well, being constantly in demand from large financial companies and banks, media organisations and branches of government, to mention just a few. She was also one of the first mediators to build up a specialism in workplace and employment disputes.

In a career that covered a number of chapters, notably as an educator in different roles, she was formally trained as a trainer and prior to working with CEDR led courses for senior education management in handling conflict, confrontation and third-party work for the London Education Authority.

Frances was an early mediator to be accredited by CEDR and went on to be a Director of Skills at CEDR and Head of CEDR’s Faculty (1994 – 2009) where she made an influential impact on CEDR’s renowned Mediator Skills Training. Frances was incredibly generous to new mediators and to staff who worked with her and a large number of mediators benefited from her guidance and mentorship both formally and informally.

As a mediator she helped resolve hundreds of disputes, many of which looked impossible to resolve, which in combination with her friendly, understated and assured style, quickly led to her being regarded as one of the City and Country’s top mediators.

Frances embraced life. She originally trained as a sculptor, a passion that she returned to in later life, and also rebuilt and ran a farm. Frances was a lifelong learner and traveller and took part in a wide range of sporting activities including gliding, parachuting and sailing with her husband.

Frances made a positive impact on very many people’s lives in very many different ways. CEDR’s deepest sympathies go to her husband John, her family and her many friends.

“As the person who took over from Frances as CEDR’s Director of Training I experienced firsthand the legacy of quality she left on our Mediator training course and having worked alongside her as a trainer, I learnt so much about how to engage with participants to enhance their learning.  But quite apart from her contribution to our profession and to CEDR , I have received many messages about the immense contribution she made to the lives of the individuals she met and worked with. Frances believed in them, even when they didn’t believe in themselves, and gave them an opportunity to set them on the right path of life’s  journey. It was Frances who believed in me as a young mediator and brought me on to the training faculty. She supported me as Director of Training and set me on my path. All I can say on behalf of myself, and many others, is I will be forever grateful for her contribution to my life and this gratitude is held close in my heart.” – James South, CEO, CEDR

“The tributes flowing in for Frances speak volumes – she spoke to people’s hearts and with considerable quiet effectiveness.” – Dr Karl Mackie CBE

“Frances was a completely unique individual. She was insightful, compassionate, fun and wonderfully creative in every aspect of her life and a truly inspirational human being. Frances will be greatly missed, but never forgotten and all of us at CEDR were blessed to have been able to work with and learn from her for so long.” – Eileen Carroll KC (Hon)

To learn more about Frances, you can listen to a podcast she recorded with Eileen Carroll KC (Hon) here.


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