About the Authors

Rikk Larsen, Arline Kardasis, Blair Trippe, and Crystal Thorpe

Arline Kardasis, Rikk Larsen, Crystal Thorpe and Blair Trippe, authors of Mom Always Liked You Best, are mediators, trainers, and founding partners of Elder Decisions®, a division of Agreement Resources, LLC. Through mediation and conflict coaching, they help families resolve disputes around eldercare, property sharing, inheritance matters, and other adult family conflicts.

As a team, they have designed and delivered advanced trainings in elder mediation for mediators from around the United States and abroad. Individually and together, they have delivered workshops, seminars, and trainings in a wide spectrum of settings, including: Harvard Law School Program on Negotiation, the Sino-U.S. Judicial Mediation Exchange Program, the Judges’ Institute at the Connecticut Probate Assembly, the American Bar Association, the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, the Association for Conflict Resolution, the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center’s conference on Alzheimer’s disease, and the Map Through the Maze Conferences of the Alzheimer’s Association.

All of the Elder Decisions partners have served on Subcommittees for the Massachusetts Trial Court’s Standing Committee on Dispute Resolution.

ARLINE KARDASIS served as a founding tri-chair of the Elder Decision-Making and Conflict Resolution Section of the Association for Conflict Resolution, and she is the former Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Association for Conflict Resolution-New England Chapter. She received her BA in Political Science and Urban Studies from Boston University and her MAT in Secondary Education from Simmons College.



RIKK LARSEN is a life coach and an estate settlement specialist as well as a mediator and trainer. He has written extensively about adult family conflict. Rikk is a former court case coordinator for the Harvard Mediation Program. He received his BA in Economics from Williams College and his MBA from Harvard Business School.




CRYSTAL THORPE serves on the Board of Directors of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation.  Prior to co-founding Elder Decisions and Agreement Resources, LLC, she had over ten years of experience in the corporate and non-profit sectors in the areas of training, human resources, quality assurance, and consulting. She now focuses exclusively on conflict resolution for families and workplaces. She holds an MSW and an MBA from Boston College and an undergraduate degree in Cognitive Science/Psycholinguistics, magna cum laude, from Brown University.


BLAIR TRIPPE is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Association for Conflict Resolution-New England Chapter. In addition to her work as a mediator and trainer, Blair is a consultant to family businesses around issues of succession planning and governance. She earned an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, a BA in Psychology from Connecticut College, and a Certificate in Family Business Advising from the Family Firm Institute.


The authors speak, present workshops, and provide customized training programs for large and small groups. For more information contact them by email or at 617-621-7009.