January 06, 2010

Profile of Columbia Ombuds

Marsha Wagner, the Columbia University Ombuds Officer, is featured in the current issue of her campus newsletter. Wagner has worked at Columbia for 31 years and helped establish the Ombuds Office in 1991. Before becoming the Ombuds, Wagner taught classical Chinese literature and was director of the C.V. Starr East Asian Library. She says that the best part of her job is helping people move through an issue. “It is wonderful to observe two people who have had a serious misunderstanding come together to talk through their differences and end with a conciliatory handshake.” Every year, Wagner and Associate Ombuds Officer Bathabile Mthombeni handle about 600 new cases. Wagner also reveals she is a quilter and gardener. (Columbia Record.)

Wagner is recognized as a leader in the Ombuds field and has been actively involved in UCOA and IOA. She speaks often at regional and annual meetings. Most recently, she has lead the effort to establish an optional certification program for practitioners.

Related posts: Ombuds to Speak at ACR Regional Conference in New York; Where Are All the Women Who Mediate?; List of Leading Dispute Resolution Processes Omits Ombuds; Directors Appointed to Ombuds Certification Board.

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