About Family Mediation Training Ontario

Founded in 2018, Family Mediation Training Ontario (FMTO) follows a unique training strategy making a difference in the community of Family Mediation professionals.  FMTO provides a quality family mediation program designed to be practical and accessible to practitioners in the Hamilton-Halton and adjacent municipalities. 

Our Family Mediation Training Strategy

At FMTO, our number one priority is personalized service. Therefore, we have strategically chosen to go against the industry standard of 25 students per class by limiting our class size to a maximum of 12 participants.  Smaller class sizes allowed FMTO to design a boutique training program dedicated to elevating the learning experience of each participant. 

We ensure our participants receive personalized attention to enrich their learning environment.  With a more concentrated class size, our trainers are able to devote time and energy to the topics that are the most relevant to the participants.  The goal of smaller class sizes is to allow each participant to revel in a learning moment unique to him or herself.  This successful training strategy is celebrated in the family mediation community.

Our trainers are passionate about training and value the growth in the family dispute resolution community that training provides.  As an organization, we are constantly growing and learning about new developments in our field.  We strongly believe training informs practice and practice informs training.  Our main focus is always on the experience of learning while simultaneously encouraging participants to become effective members in the family mediation community.

We are proud to contribute to a generation of practitioners who can apply what they have learned from FMTO in practice.  Our greatest joy, as trainers, is witnessing the success of our students.  When we meet our students, sometimes years after their training, we are delighted to recognize their accomplishments and contributions to the practice of family mediation.

Meet Our Team


Cathryn L. Paul

Lawyer, Mediator, Arbitrator

Margot Hallman

Lawyer, Guest Speaker

Barbara Anderson

Clinical Social Worker, Mediator

Richard W. Shields

Lawyer • Mediator • Arbitrator

“Richard Shields and Cathryn Paul provided a comprehensive framework of the law as it relates to the field of family mediation.  Their knowledge and training encompassed a substantive review of relevant case law, legislation, and judicial procedure from both a historical perspective as well as the current applicable law.  Their offerings of contextualized examples drawn from their vast experiences and knowledge, provided a global overview of concepts, as well as meaningful practicality.  I would highly recommend this course to any professional seeking training from some of the best in the mediation field.”

— Susan Sethi

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    Family Mediation Training Ontario
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    12:52 02 Nov 18
    Barbara Anderson and Richard Shields were detailed and methodical in their approach to family mediation training. Through their respective fields of social work and law, they were able to offer comprehensive perspectives that were both practical and balanced. In addition, the intensive training, close personal attention, and immediate feedback received by each trainee were attributed to the uniqueness of its small class size. I found the course to be insightful, highly informative, and a testament to the experience, knowledge, and standard of excellence these two professionals share.
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