National Green Panel


Professional Services & Educational Programs


About Mediation

Advantages of Mediation


Co-Mediation &


About Binding Mediation


Mediation Forms & Documents

Med-Arb & Arb-Med  Mediated-Arbitration

State Arbitration Information
New Jersey

New Jersey Home Warranty Arbitration Information

Home Warranty Arbitration Procedures


Home Inspection Arbitration Procedures


Umpire Services
Insurance Company
Additional Party Addendum
 Umpire Agreement
Umpire Pre-hearing Order


Expert & Witness Service


Fees and Costs


Suggested Standard Contract Language

Suggested Green Contract Language

Dispute Resolution Training


Contact CDRS


Printer Friendly Version


Back to VA State page


Back International Panel



Ann Rackas Pate is a Construction Lawyer who knows Construction™ Her background includes education and experience in architecture, civil and structural engineering, construction, and law in the public/government and private sectors. Ms. Pate’s broad-based success spans commercial building, residential housing, industrial and warehouse, institutional university and museum, highway transportation, and airport/aviation construction.


Ms. Pate has four years of experience serving under the Supreme Court of Virginia as a Magistrate in the 19th Judicial District of Fairfax County, with jurisdiction to conduct probable cause and bail hearings, and issue civil, criminal, and search warrants.

She also served as gubernatorial appointment on the Virginia Board for Contractors. As a member of the Board, she had four years of experience reviewing and conducting hundreds of fact-finding hearings and ruling on appropriate violations and sanctions of contractors and tradesmen for the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR).


Ms. Pate has been a certified mediator in the General District Courts of Virginia. She completed mediation training at the Northern Virginia Mediation Service, dispute resolution board training with the Dispute Resolution Board Foundation, and arbitration training with Construction Dispute Resolution Services and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators..


She has managed construction projects in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean. Ms. Pate is familiar with FIDIC contract documents through her work with the American Institute of Architects. As part of her education, she studied architectural history, urban planning, and historic preservation at the University of Paris through a program of the University of Illinois at Chicago. Ms. Pate has traveled extensively throughout Europe and Australia, and speaks Lithuanian fluently.


Ms. Pate is principal of RACKAS PATE LAW, PLLC (www.rackaspatelaw.com) in Alexandria, Virginia, a solo practice limited to transactional aspects of construction law. Client services include business startup, contract review and negotiation, and alternative dispute resolution of claims for owners, contractors, subcontractors, and design professionals. She was also an independent risk management consultant for the architect and engineer professional liability specialty line of the Zurich American Insurance Company.

As an attorney, prior to starting her firm in 2002, she was Managing Director & Counsel of Contract Documents for the American Institute of Architects.


Prior to becoming an attorney, Ms. Pate had sixteen years of field, design, technical, construction, business, government contract, and management experience on high-profile projects with:

  • Howard University as Project Manager for the 42-site LeDroit Park historic-area residential revitalization initiative in Washington, DC.,
  • Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority on the $1 billion Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) Capital Development Program,
  • US Airways, Inc. as Corporate Real Estate Manager responsible for a $130 million portfolio of airline facilities in 30 cities,
  • Illinois Department of Transportation, Division of Highways as a Civil Engineer on highway, road, and bridge construction projects totaling $26 million in the six-county Chicago metropolitan area,
  • Ann Rackas Design Associates, a consulting firm for museum projects up to $1 million,
  • A. Epstein & Sons, Inc., structural engineering on $25-$80 million commercial, high-rise, and industrial projects.

In 2008, Ms. Pate started DON’T BUILD UNTIL, LLC, (www.dontbuilduntil.com) a Commonwealth of Virginia, DPOR Board for Contractors approved education provider. As the instructor, she provides mandatory classes in contractor basic business and pre-licensing, and sanctioned contractor remedial education.


Ms. Pate has ten years of experience as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology and Northern Virginia Community College teaching civil engineering and construction courses in cost estimating, construction planning and scheduling, site operations, construction management, and construction business law.


She is a published author and public speaker. Ms. Pate has authored articles for, or been quoted in, publications such as The Construction Lawyer, Under Construction, A&E Briefings of Zurich North America, This Old House Magazine, Buildings Magazine, International Journal of Project Management, and Engineering News-Record. She has spoken to diverse groups such as the American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry, the Design/Build Association of America, the Construction Specifications Institute, Associated Builders and Contractors of Virginia, the American Subcontractors Association, and the International Aviation Women’s Association.


Ms. Pate studied Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago with a major in Structural Engineering. She subsequently received a Master of Science in Civil Engineering degree from the Illinois Institute of Technology, with a Construction Management major. Her thesis, “Commercially Available Computer Software for Construction Planning and Scheduling” was cited in Engineering News-Record. Her Juris Doctor is from the George Mason University School of Law in Virginia. Additionally, she has had BOCA General Building Code training, and was a licensed real estate agent in Illinois.


Ms. Pate has been a licensed member of the Virginia State Bar since 1999 and a member of its Construction Law and Public Contracts Section. She has belonged to the American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry, the ABA Section on Dispute Resolution, the Dispute Resolution Board Foundation, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, Associated General Contractors, Associated Builders and Contractors, American Subcontractors Association, Construction Management Association of America, Commercial Real Estate Women, American Association of Airport Executives, Women’s Transportation Seminar, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, and the American Association of Museums.