Gary Benton is an internationally recognized Arbitrator and Mediator with over thirty years major law firm and in-house expertise in both corporate/commercial transactions and litigation/arbitration practice. He focuses on US and international business contract disputes, private investment, emerging technologies, intellectual property and competition matters.
In addition to his arbitration practice, Gary is the founder and currently serves as the Chairman of the Silicon Valley Arbitration & Mediation Center (SVAMC) and is a founder and currently serves on the Executive Committee of the California International Arbitration Council (CIAC), both based in Palo Alto, California. He is on the Adjunct Faculty of the Santa Clara University School of Law and teaches International Commercial Arbitration.
Gary was previously a partner with the leading international law firms Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP in Palo Alto and Coudert Brothers LLP in San Francisco and Palo Alto. He served as the head of Coudert Brothers’ West Coast International Arbitration Practice and its Northern California Technology, Media and Telecoms group. At Pillsbury, he co-chaired the Silicon Valley international team. In addition, he served in an in-house capacity as Vice President and Chief Legal Officer of a cloud and mobile Internet cybersecurity company.
As a practicing attorney, his focus has been on US and international business contracts and commercial matters, corporate and securities transactions, private equity and venture capital investment, emerging growth financing, IT and Internet, biotech and pharmaceuticals, alternative energy, technology development, sales, marketing and distribution, competition, IP licensing and infringement disputes. Gary’s technology law career includes extensive experience litigating patent and other IP disputes, managing portfolios of international legal projects for Fortune 500 technology companies, venture financing Silicon Valley tech startups, handling US and international M&As and IPOs, and serving as an Internet cloud security company General Counsel.
Gary is one of only a few arbitration experts with a background in technology and international business law. He has significant experience as both a litigation partner and a corporate partner in AmLaw 100 firms. He is one of only a few technology arbitration experts with experience as both a partner in a major law firm and as a General Counsel in an emerging technology company. As well, he is one of only a few Silicon Valley arbitration experts with extensive international arbitration experience. Gary’s training as a U.S. and international litigator and arbitration counsel, coupled with his transactional expertise in emerging technology, make him uniquely suited for resolving complex private investment, technology development/distribution and international business disputes.
Gary has handled hundreds of cases in the course of his career. He has substantial experience as a single, presiding and panel arbitrator for U.S. and international commercial arbitrations focused on corporate, commercial and international business transactions, including technology financing, technology development, sales and distribution, IP licensing, patent, copyright and trade secret infringement and data breaches. His international arbitration experience includes counsel and neutral services involving common law, civil law and developing country matters. He has significant experience with civil law and other non-US style arbitrations.
He is a member of the the ICDR International Panel; the American Arbitration Association (AAA) Commercial Panel (Large & Complex Cases, Corporate Law, Securities, High Technology, Communications & Telecom, Contract Law; General Business Commercial; Intellectual Property; Cybersecurity, Data Security & Privacy specialty panels); the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution Panel of Distinguished Neutrals (General & Tech); the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Panel, the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC) – IP Panel, the Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration (SCIA) and other major international arbitral institution panels. He has served as an Arbitrator on International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Court of Arbitration and Netherlands Arbitration Institute (NAI) matters, and has served as counsel on London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) matters and on matters administered throughout East Asia, including in China (Hong Kong and mainland China), Japan, Singapore, the Philippines and Indonesia.
Gary is a Fellow and Director of the College of Commercial Arbitrators (CCArb), a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb), and a member of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration (ITA) Advisory Board, the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA), the International Bar Association (IBA), the N. Cal International Arbitration Club, the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), the Licensing Executives Society, the American College of e-Neutrals (ACESIN), the Alliance for Equality and various other U.S. and international arbitration and legal associations. He is peer-vetted to the Silicon Valley Arbitration & Mediation Center List of the World’s Leading Technology Neutrals. He is also Accredited Dispute Resolution Expert with the India-based Mediation and Conciliation Network. He has been recognized many years has been recognized as a Super Lawyer – ADR and is listed in Who’s Who in the World. He served on the Queen Mary Univ. of London 2016 International Dispute Resolution Survey Task Force and currently serves on the International Task Force on Mixed Mode Dispute Resolution. In 2016, he was named by the National Law Journal as one of the 25 ADR Champions in the US. In 2017, he was named in the IAM 300 The World’s Leading IP Strategists. He currently chairs the ABA Dispute Resolution Section Arbitration Consent Subcommittee.
Gary was trained by the American Arbitration Association as a Mediator. He assists parties in negotiating business-practical resolution of US. and international business and technology disputes. He handles administered mediations through the American Arbitration Association and has been appointed to the US District Court NDCA Mediation & ENE Panels.
Gary is a highly engaged dispute resolver. He developed Dynamic Dispute Resolution™, a model of alternative dispute resolution emphasizing (1) resolution by a neutral who has focused legal and industry expertise in the subject matter of the dispute, (2) a practical methodology directed toward efficiency, cost-savings and party satisfaction with the process, (3) development of processes to meet the desires and requirements of the parties and their counsel, (4) active engagement by the neutral on procedural and substantive issues throughout the process, (5) highest quality decision making, and (6) devotion to the highest ethical standards.
He received his undergraduate degree with honors from Washington University in St. Louis (Earth & Planetary Sciences, Political Science and International Development) and his law degree with honors from Tulane Law School, and engaged in additional legal studies at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law and international studies at Stanford University.
Gary is qualified as a U.S. lawyer and an English solicitor. He is admitted in California and the District of Columbia and a member of the bar of the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and various federal district courts.
Gary has handled technology, private investment and international commercial matters in over 80 countries around the world: in Asia (including extensive work in China and India), Europe, Israel, Australia, the US and Central/South America.
He serves as an Arbitrator and Mediator throughout the US and internationally in administered and ad hoc proceedings. As well, he speaks frequently and writes regularly on topics concerning technology law and international dispute resolution.