Prior to my career as a full-time neutral, I spent twenty-five years working in the global automotive manufacturing industry. I began my career in manufacturing as an hourly production team member and subsequently held various management roles, including Vice President of Operations and Vice President of Human Resources. This diverse work history provides me with a unique perspective when it comes to grievance arbitration and employment disputes. The list below shows the types of issues that I have experience resolving:


Absenteeism, Bargaining Unit Work, Benefits (Bonus, Holidays, Insurance, Leave, Vacation), Conduct, Contract interpretation / application, Demotion, Discipline, Discharge, Discrimination (age, disability, race, sex, religion, national origin), Drug/Alcohol Offenses, Harassment, Hiring Practices, Job Performance, Job Posting/Bidding, Layoffs/Bumping/Recall, Management Rights, Neutrality & Card Check, Past Practices, Promotion, Safety/Health Conditions, Seniority, Strikes, Wages (cost-of-living pay, holiday pay, incentive pay, job classification & rates, overtime pay, severance pay, vacation pay), Work Stoppages, Work Hours / Schedules, Work Assignment, Working Conditions, Work Orders, Violence or Threats.


Most conflicts can be successfully resolved in mediation. Mediation is the lowest cost dispute resolution process and gives the parties the most control over the outcome. During mediation, I facilitate a discussion between the conflict parties about the various issues. Once the issues have been defined and each party has been able to present their position to the other, I assist with brainstorming and evaluating various solutions. As solutions are discussed and agreed upon, they are documented into the mediation / settlement agreement. Once the agreement is signed, it becomes a legally binding contract and is enforceable in court. Mediation is a private and confidential process, so if resolution is not reached, nothing discussed in mediation can be used later in the legal process.

  • Employment mediation: It is generally in everyone's best interest to attempt resolving claims made by a current for former employee as soon as possible. Bringing the issue to mediation early increases the chance of resolution and demonstrates urgency by the employer to address the issue head on.

  • Labor mediation: Not every issue results in a formal grievance and not all unsettled grievances have to end up in arbitration. Mediation with a neutral party can often bring new light to an issue that wasn't previously discovered during the grievance investigation process. Introducing a mediation step into your grievance process allows for a final review of the grievance before moving to arbitration. When compared to arbitration, mediation is a lower cost, quicker process, lower risk option that still provides the Parties with the final decision making power. If the issue is not resolved in mediation, then the grievance will continue through to arbitration, where the arbitrator will make the final decision.

  • Business to Business mediation: Whether is a contract dispute, merger, or dissolution, mediation can provide a safe space to discuss the relevant issues and resolve the conflict in a manner that is acceptable to both Parties.


When dealing with a complex workplace complaint involving misconduct, discrimination, retaliation, or sexual harassment it is often in the Company's best interest to hire a neutral investigator to head off any perception of bias. My third-party investigation services ensure a fair and neutral investigation that focuses on uncovering facts and arriving at the truth.


Arbitrator and Mediator specializing in business, employment, and labor disputes.

Michael Tomko is an arbitrator and mediator who specializes in resolving employment and labor disputes. Mike is a member of the American Arbitration Association labor arbitration and consumer arbitration panels, he conducts private mediations, and appears on several state court mediation rosters.

Prior to his career in dispute resolution, Mike spent twenty-five years working for national and global firms within the automotive manufacturing sector. Mike started his career as an hourly production employee and worked his way up into roles such as, Vice President of Operations and Vice President of Human Resources. He has over fifteen years of labor and employee relations experience. Mike has expert knowledge and experience in collective bargaining, grievance investigation and administration, mediation, arbitration, EEOC, NLRB, and litigation. It was within this space that he discovered a passion for alternative dispute resolution. Mike now dedicates his time working as an independent neutral party providing high-quality dispute resolution services.


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Call or Text: 616-666-0615