President’s Update – September 2021

Well, Summer 2021 has ended. We certainly live in uncertain times. We try to live good and productive lives, but so much of our lives is out of our control. To some extent, that is how our clients live their lives. If they are in court, their entire life is in the hands of a strange judge. If they wisely choose the Collaborative Process, they have more control over their future, but still not complete control. We have the ability and duty to help our clients get through their difficult time of uncertainty while providing hope for a brighter future. Congratulations to all of you for choosing to live your professional life following such high standards and thank you for being a part of FACP.

I also want to thank our Executive Assistant, Brittany Staggs, who does an awesome job coordinating our FACP activities. Additionally, congratulations to Brittany for starting law school at Florida A&M University in Orlando. Best wishes to you, Brittany! We look forward to you becoming a Collaborative Family Attorney!

FACP 3 to 5 Year Goals

Florida is a thriving Collaborative community. We set the pace for other Collaborative communities around the world. Based on an FACP Board Retreat that took place in February, the FACP Board identified five areas of focus for the next 3 – 5 years. FACP aspires to strengthen Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility throughout FACP and Practice Groups. Additional goals include training more professionals, further supporting Practice Groups, reaching out more extensively to the Judiciary, and further spreading the word about Collaborative Process to the public.

There is a roll for every one of our members and we could use your help, so please step up and volunteer to help FACP in a way that interests you. We urge you to get involved and to bring your creative and dedicated mind to FACP. There is nothing stopping you from becoming a statewide and even internationally known Collaborative Professional. The first steps are getting involved in your local Practice Group and in FACP.

FACP Committee Openings

FACP’s committees have been working hard and welcome you to bring your fresh ideas and momentum by becoming a committee member. FACP committees that have openings are:

  • Access to Collaborative
  • Leadership Institute
  • Credentialing
  • Newsletter
  • Conference
  • Outreach
  • Fundraising
  • Practice Group Development
  • Governance
  • Research
  • Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility
  • Website

I want to specifically encourage participation in our Practice Group Committee. This committee, chaired by Susan Keyes of Miami and Matt Bartolomei of Orlando, focuses on helping every Practice Group to maximize its effectiveness. This is the committee, along with the Outreach Committee, that presents our Grand Rounds webinars. If you are a Practice Group leader, please reach out to Susan and Matt to brainstorm about how FACP can help your local professionals. Susan and Matt both have experience leading a Practice Group and are a wealth of information and creative ideas.

I urge you to get involved in at least one committee. It will not only expand your knowledge of Collaborative Practice, but will also allow you to create relationships with great people from around Florida. For more information, please contact me directly or go to our website.

The New FACP Website

Our new website is live and going strong. You can find it at Please tour the new website and see what our new webmasters, Holly and Brendan Haggerty of H2D, have produced. If you have any comments, suggestions or questions, please reach out to Holly at

I welcome you to contact me to discuss anything related to FACP and the Collaborative world in general. I especially invite you to contact me to learn more about how you can get involved. Feel free to call me at 305-448-1555 or e-mail me at

Yours Collaboratively,
Bob Merlin
FACP President

Share This Post

Latest News and Resources

Skip to content