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Walter Drew is a man for whom conflict resolution is a way of life. Whether mediating or arbitrating construction-related disputes, training others in the process, or helping to resolve conflicting points of view among various board members, within community and professional groups, and among his own family members, he eagerly approaches the challenge.


He strongly believes that people have the ability within them to resolve their own conflicts to various degrees and is excited about the opportunity to help empower them as a mediator in this process. He understands that sometimes the parties need the decision-making abilities of a skillful arbitrator, but in either case, his goal is to assist others in achieving fair and unbiased resolution of their disputes.


Walter is a well-respected member of the building and remodeling community and has served as a guest speaker and panelist on many occasions over the years.  He has also served as a judge for various awards programs for the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association including the Excellence in Remodeling Awards program and the Parade of Homes.




Walter has performed over a hundred mediations and arbitrations, both for the American Arbitration Association and in his private practice. Having been a general contractor since 1970, he has focused his efforts on construction, land-use planning, large-group workplace mediation, and facilitation of partnering agreements. His experience includes helping resolve conflicts between owners and contractors; designers/architects and owners; contractors and subcontractors; employers and employees; and owners as partners. Some individual cases have exceeded over $1 million in their claims.


Walter has taught mediation in Albuquerque, New Mexico, for the Department of Defense, the Department of the Interior, and EEO counselors in the public sector. His clients have also included the State of New Mexico, the cities of Albuquerque and Santa Fe, and the Public Service Company of New Mexico. In addition, Walter has served as a facilitator for several neighborhood association/developer meetings.




Walter was the founder of Adobe Corp, a general contracting firm specializing in high-end custom residential construction with 40 employees and an annual gross of $3 million when sold in 1989. He served as president and CEO for 19 years.


Since 1989, he has performed thousands of bank draw inspections and residential and commercial inspections. He has served as an owner’s representative for many clients, overseeing construction projects totaling over $20 million. Walter has also acted as an expert witness and offered litigation support in construction-related cases for the past 30 years.

Consulting 1974 - Present
Building Inspector 1974 - Present
Bank Inspector 1990 - Present
Owner's Representative 1990 - Present
Expert Witness 1974 - Present

Construction Mediations 1987 - Present
American Arbitration Association 1993 - Present
Association for Conflict Resolution 1994 - Present

Adobe Corp*, Santa Fe, N.M. 1972 - 1989

*Adobe Corp was a general contractor specializing in
high-end custom residential construction; 40 employees;
annual gross of $3 million in 1989.

New Mexico License #33325


CONSULTING As construction consultant, work in various capacities as an adviser
in construction-related lawsuits; a mediator between contractors and clients; and an "owner's representative," overseeing construction projects. Assist owner-builders in design development, materials selection, estimating, crew selection, and quality control.

BUILDING Have done more than 3,000 inspections of residential and commercial
INSPECTIONS buildings in northern New Mexico. Certified Construction Inspector, #3015, Association of Construction Inspectors.

BANK Do construction loan draw inspections for Wells Fargo Bank,
INSPECTIONS Century Bank, Los Alamos National Bank, First State Bank, First National Bank of Santa Fe,Valley National Bank, People's Bank and private contracting firms. Out of state institutions include: Lenders Choice (CA) Cocamar (AZ) and Granite Loan Management (CO.)
Over 4,000 inspections done since 1990.

OWNER'S Manage and oversee construction projects in northern New Mexico.
REPRESENTATIVE This involves plan development and compliance; giving aesthetic advice and checking for quality; selection of contractors and subcontractors and payment of same; development of punch lists and conflict resolution.

LITIGATION Have worked with numerous attorneys as a construction professional.
SUPPORT Have assisted attorneys in developing construction-related cases to include preparation of cost estimates, job reviews, questions for depositions, diagrams, and code compliance.

MEDIATION Have acted as a mediator for contractors, subcontractors, architects, municipalities, neighborhood associations and owners in conflicts over quality, costs, punch lists, and general communication issues.

ARBITRATION Arbitration panel member for the American Arbitration Association.
Have conducted arbitrations in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, northern
New Mexico and Phoenix, AZ.


(construction related)

Board Member, The Mediation Alliance 1991 - 1997
Historic Design Review Board, City of Santa Fe 1990 - 1994
Board Member, Old Santa Fe Association 1990 - 1998
Archaeological Subcommittee, City of Santa Fe 1986 - 1987
Larragoite Site Affordable Housing Subcommittee, City of Santa Fe 1983
Planning & Development Committee, City of Santa Fe 1982 - 1983
Zoning Committee, Urban Policy Board, City of Santa Fe 1981 - 1982
Alternate, Urban Policy Board, City of Santa Fe 1980 - 1982
Chairman, Citizen's Bond Issue Steering Committee, Santa Fe 1978




Albuquerque Mediation Center, Albuquerque, NM

Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT
**Awarded Title V Fellowship for study of educationally disadvantaged

University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI

Officer Candidate School, U.S. Army, 1963
Fort Benning, G




American Arbitration Association (AAA)

Association for Conflict Resolution (ACR)

Dispute Avoidance and Resolution Task Force (DART)

New Mexico Mediation Association (NMMA)





1. Peter B. Shoenfeld
  • Expert witness - water penetration in basement.
  • Expert witness - quality of construction in a fraud case.
  • House inspection for quality; owner had issues with contractor's attitude and failure to complete punch list.

2.  William D. Winter

  • Expert witness - contractor/owner conflict over costs and quality.

  • Expert witness - slip and fall suit (staircase).

3.   Richard C. Bosson

  • Expert witness - carbon monoxide poisoning suit.

  • Expert witness - construction quality and compliance suit.

4.  Carol J. Ritchie

  • Expert witness - slip and fall (staircase).

  • Expert witness – slip and fall, entry stoop.

5.  James E. Thomson

  • Expert witness - contractor/owner conflict over costs and quality.

6.  Herbert M. Silverberg

  • Expert witness - compliance of an as-built home with model home.

7.  Robert P. Worcester

  • Owner's representative for quality compliance with plans.

8.  Jerome Ginsburg

  • Construction mediation/arbitration.

9.  Janet McL McKay

  • Owner's representative to settle a conflict over quality of construction between an owner and contractor.

  • Building inspections.

  • Mediation/arbitration job not complete.

10.  John A. Jacobson

  • Reviewed newly built home for construction defects.

11.  Harry S. Connelley

  • Building inspections.

12.  Robert  A. Engel

  • Building inspections.

13.  Ralph H. Scheuer

  • Building inspections.

  • Commercial inspections.

  • Tax evaluations.

14.  James S. Rubin

  • Building inspections.

15.  Randolph B. Felker

  • Owner/contractor conflict over contract, quality and price.

  • Contractor/subcontractor conflict over plaster quality (2 cases).

  • Strawbale/mold issues

  • Punch list/radiant heat

16.  Owen Rouse, III

  • Owner/contractor conflict over quality of construction (2 cases).

  • Review construction costs.

  • Settling problems.

17.  Mark Ish

  • City of Los Alamos v. developer.

  • Expert witness - quality of construction/code compliance.

  • Height of building in Santa Fe County.

  • Consult on construction.

18.  Linda Hemphill

  • Expert witness - personal injury case.

19.  Peter Culbert

  • Expert witness - personal injury case; evaluate owner-built residence.

  • Personal injury - door opening over public sidewalk.

  • Expert witness – collapsing floors, structural issues.

  •  Expert witness – water damage.

20.  Patrick Whelan

  • Expert witness - personal injury related to water temperature.

  • Expert witness - construction charges, Santa Fe standards for plans.

21.  Tim Vidal

  • Expert witness - personal injury case.

  • Commercial building inspection.




22.  Joe Canepa

  • Expert witness - landlord tenant dispute.

  • Building inspections.

  • Reviewing plans and specifications regarding increase in building costs.

23.  Richard Lees

  • Building inspection.

24.  William Waggoner

  • Expert witness - budget for completion of home.

  • Family dispute regarding investment in family home.

  • Two building inspections.

25.  James O. Bell

  • Expert witness - maintenance on automatic doors.

  • Expert witness - roof and leaking into basement.

26.  Judith Nakamura

  • Miller, Stratvert & Torgerson, P.A.

  • Expert witness - maintenance on automatic doors.

27.  Charlotte Hetherington

  • Simons, Cuddy & Friedman

  • Expert witness - school building, consultant during mediation.

28.  Jeffrey E. Jones

  • Miller, Stratvert & Torgerson, P.A.

  • Expert witness - water penetration and stucco.

29.  Michael Kauffman

  • Slip and fall - ice and roof drainage.

30.  Joe M. Romero

  • Slip and fall - sidewalk.

  • Evaluate construction for elderly client.

31.  Eric Sommer and Craig Othmer

  • Contract termination.

32.  Susan Hapka

  • Quality of construction/related costs (2 cases).

33. Scott Hatcher

  • Quality of construction.

  • Expert witness – fall from loft.

  • Expert witness – slip and fall.

34.  David Houliston

  • Assess structural adobe damage.

  • Assess cracks/road construction.

35.  William Keller

  • Slip and fall.

36.  Leonard G. Espinosa

  • Evaluate wall construction.

  • Apartment complex – status of building, water penetration.

37.  James Sullivan

  • Slip and fall.

  • Staircase at hotel.

38.  Charles Purdy

  • Wind blown door.

  • Slip and fall – steps.

39.  Michael Hyatt

  • Owners’ representations – purchase and additional work.

  • Consult on project development.

  • Three house inspections.

40.  Nelse Shreck

  • Consult on construction qualities, costs.

41.  Jack Hardwick

  • Radiant heat issues.

42.  David Bunting

  • Construction issues, costs (3 cases).