An eastern North Carolina-based Collaborative Family Law attorney, author, and speaker is thrilled to announce that the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP) was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for its international efforts in Collaborative Practice. Ashley-Nicole Russell, Esq., owner of AN|R Law: A Negotiated Resolution and active member of IACP, is excited to be recognized globally for her contributions to the international Collaborative movement. 

“This nomination is an overwhelming feeling of validation and gratitude,” shared Russell, who was recently appointed to IACP’s International Campaign for Membership Committee. “As Collaborative professionals, we see the beautiful and amazing work that this process does every day for families as it keeps them as a whole unit, even though they may be in separate places, and creates stability and foundation for children and for people moving on. To have Collaborative Practice be recognized at such a high level is so rewarding. I hope this brings more awareness for families across America, especially as we embark on the busiest time of the year for separations and divorces. January is known as ‘Divorce Month’ in the family law field.” 

Russell was the first attorney in the eastern region of North Carolina to solely focus on practicing Collaborative Law, an alternative dispute resolution model transforming the way families resolve conflict by offering an alternative to litigation. She founded AN|R Law in 2011 directly out of law school and has successfully handled more than 600 divorce cases using this out-of-court process. 

Her award-winning law firm has four offices across central and eastern North Carolina in Greenville, Beaufort, Raleigh, and Wilmington. Russell is also a founding board member of the North Carolina Collaborative Attorney Network (NC-CAN) and went on to co-found Michael & Russell, PLLC which is Wilmington’s first Collaborative Law firm. Her efforts further spread awareness of Collaborative Practice and its benefits an option for families throughout all of North Carolina and the United States. 

“This nomination is a wonderful recognition of the immense work undertaken by family professionals worldwide to move away from adversarial based dispute resolution to an accessible, more respectful and peaceful means of resolving conflict. In working together in this way, we model peaceful approaches for our children to carry into the world in the future,” shared IACP Board Member Selina Jane-Trigg of Christchurch, New Zealand. 

Collaborative makes this possible by working proactively and cooperatively with teams of specially trained Collaborative legal, financial, and mental health professionals who educate, support, and guide couples to make their own lasting and respectful resolutions, without resorting to litigation or the intervention of judges, magistrates, or court personnel. 

“This practice is unique and it approaches conflict differently, which is what makes it so incredibly effective,” explained Russell. “This nomination proves that Collaborative Law, IACP, and thousands of trained Collaborative practitioners in 28 countries are changing divorce around the world for the better.” 

Russell is passionate about mentoring other attorneys who are interested in starting Collaborative-focused law practices. She recently launched a first-of-its-kind training program, Delivering Divorce Differently, to coach professionals on how they can leave litigation behind by becoming committed to Collaborative Practice. Her work as a trained Collaborative attorney has been featured in Forbes, The Washington Post, and ABC, NBC, and CBS news affiliates. In addition, Russell wrote the book “The Cure for Divorce Culture” and hosts the “Divorce, Healthy!” podcast to help others make informed decisions about divorce. She is also an advocate for equal shared parenting and serves on the National Board of Directors for the National Parents Organization.

“When I started my Collaborative Family Law firm, so many people told me that this type of law wouldn’t be successful. They couldn’t have been more wrong,” admitted Russell. “It was exactly what our area needed. I took a chance because it was something I believed in. I’m a child of a tumultuous divorce, so I knew there had to be a better way to help families during divorce and Collaborative Law is it. This Process wouldn’t be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize if it didn’t work for clients and their families.” 

You can learn more about working with AN|R Law: A Negotiated Resolution for collaborative divorce and other family law matters in North Carolina by reaching out to our office. You can call 252-702-4376 or fill out this online contact form

Connect with AN|R on our social media accounts on FacebookInstagram, and LinkedIn. You can also check out Ashley-Nicole’s book, The Cure for Divorce Culture, and listen to her podcast, “Divorce, Healthy!” which is available on all major listening platforms. If you’re interested in inviting Ashley-Nicole to speak at your next event or conference, she is currently booking in-person and virtual speaking engagements for 2023. Please reach out to her team by emailing