S&P's Ombudsman, Ray J. Groves has published the first annual report summarizing the activities of his office. The report does not provide the total number of cases handled in 2009, but says that 85% were from external sources; 85% were from the U.S.; 50% concerned S&P's ratings; and only 12.5% requested anonymity.
April 30, 2010
April 29, 2010
The FBI is hiring a Supervisory Ombudsman to work in Washington, DC. The GS-15 position serves as the Chief Ombudsman and consultant to the Director and FBI Executives, and as an expert advisor to managerial, supervisory, Special Agent and professional staff personnel throughout the Bureau.
April 28, 2010
The Werner Institute for Negotiation & Dispute Resolution at Creighton University has created a site for ADR-related news, events, and information: ADRhub.com. Jeff Thompson, who blogs at Enjoy Mediation, is force behind the portal, which is open to academics, practitioners, students, and others interested in dispute resolution. The site is emerging as a great resource for the field. (ADRhub.)
Clayton Gilman's latest post at the Organizational Ombudsman Blog explains that all of his clients to date have used ODR. After trying several applications, he now endorses Juripax "because of its emphasis on proper preparation at the time of intake and focus on ethical and transparent procedures." (Organizational Ombudsman Blog.)
April 27, 2010
Dorothy Graham, the Ombuds for Kennesaw State University, will lead a workshop at the retreat sponsored by the Consortium on Negotiation and Conflict Resolution. The tenth annual institute takes place July 26-30, 2010 at the Jekyll Island Club Hotel in Georgia and includes a range of programs for college and university administrators.
April 26, 2010
As the U.S. Senate grapples with legislation that would overhaul financial regulation, two proposed Ombuds programs could become an issue. The recently approved House bill would create Ombuds programs for the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. As currently drafted, the Senate bill does not.
Mary Giovagnoli, Director of the Immigration Policy Center, says that ICE could substantially improve its performance by appointing an ombudsman "to serve as an internal conscience, taking in reports on individual cases, making sure that policy is followed and serving as an internal watchdog."
April 25, 2010
The private liberal arts college in Frederick, Maryland has instituted a new policy for the prevention and resolution of discrimination and harassment. Policy 55 designates the College Ombuds as one of several resources for complainants and outlines the type of advice the Ombuds must dispense. However, Hood's policy also requires the Ombuds to "inform the Executive Director of Human Resources or her designee of the complaint." (Hood College HR.)
April 22, 2010
April 21, 2010
The International Ombudsman Association will offer its primary training courses at Pepperdine University in Malibu on June 10-12, 2010.
April 20, 2010
The Department of Energy laboratory in New Mexico will be hiring an internal candidate for its Ombuds Office. In addition to handling Ombuds cases, the position will be responsible for managing the lab's volunteer mediation program.
At the AOMA general assembly in Angola last week, members elected Thuli Madonsela as the Executive Secretary. Madonsela has served as South Africa’s Public Protector since October 2009.
April 18, 2010
Frank Fowlie, the ICANN Ombuds, will host the next caucus of Southern California Ombuds on May 19, 2010, in Marina Del Rey. The theme for the spring event is “Navigating Challenging Times -- Professional Strategies for Staying Afloat in the Tumultuous Economic Environment Affecting Our Organizations And Our Visitors.”
In response to the "Franken Amendment" passed earlier this year, the Houston-based engineering and construction company has updated its dispute resolution policies. The changes include KBR's employee Ombuds program.
April 17, 2010
A letter to the editor of the Washington Post today argues that Congress should appoint an Ombuds to prevent workplace problems like the Eric Massa incident. Writer Geoff Drucker points out that complaints from Massa's staff went unheeded for a full year. "If staff members had been able to lodge anonymous complaints with an ombudsman, senior leaders would have gotten a heads-up the same day."
April 16, 2010
US News & World Report has released its annual list of the "best" law school dispute resolution programs and Pepperdine University remains in the first position. The balance of the top ten are the same as last year, with some minor adjustments (Harvard drops from third to fourth, Hamline jumps from fourth to tied for second, etc.).
Tweets from yesterday's meeting of the Staff Council at the University of Texas Austin reveals that a proposal for an Ombuds position is being finalized. Earlier this month, UT President yielded to long-standing calls for a staff Ombuds program and asked the Staff Council for suggestions.
April 15, 2010
The 14,000-student State University of New York has selected Dawn M. Osborne-Adams as its next Ombuds. She will fill the vacancy left by Binghamton's first Ombuds, Francine Montemurro, who moved to Boston University last summer.
Iowa State Ombudsman Bill Angrick has announced that he will accept an early retirement offer and retire at age 64. Angrick was 32 when he was appointed by the Iowa legislature in 1978 and he became one of country's leading Classical Ombuds.
April 14, 2010
The Forum of Canadian Ombudsman has announced the first offering of the FCO Institute -- a course on Ombuds fundamentals. The training is designed for new and intermediate-level Classical Ombuds staff and complaint-handlers and will focus on: Ombuds theory; intake procedures; inquiry and fact-finding; and investigation techniques and analysis.
The University of Massachusetts Amherst has named Martha Nelson Patrick as Assistant Ombuds. Patrick will join UMass Ombuds Catharine Porter and fills the position previously held by Mary E. Wardwell, who passed away last year after two decades as the Assistant Ombuds. Her transfer to the Ombuds office was part of a major reorganization prompted by Chancellor Robert C. Holub's larger, multi-year plan to raise the profile of the state's flagship campus.
April 13, 2010
Last week, CSU President Ronald Berkman announced that he had reinstated the university's Ombuds Office and appointed Richard F. Rakos, PhD, to fill the position. The decision came in response to student demands, but it was not clear when the university last had an Ombuds for the general campus.
April 12, 2010
The postsecondary institution in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, is searching for an Organizational Ombuds to serve faculty, staff and students. Previously, the university had only an Ombuds for students. This is an initial four-month contract for a pilot project from mid-August 2010 to mid-December 2010.
The latest report from international financial NGO highlights the Ombuds program for its 7,000 staff as evidence of its social responsibility.
This year, a Twitter hashtag (#IOA2010) for the IOA conference in New Orleans offered attendees and non-attendees a way to follow tweets about the event. Several IOA conference goers tweeted their impressions, including DA Graham (daspokesman), Lisa Witzler (PONLisa) and Andre Marin (Ont_Ombudsman). Although they did not attend, John Zinsser (ConBenAlchemist) and Lynn Connley (LynnConnley) also joined in the conversation.
April 09, 2010
OSU President Gordon Gee has appointed Jack A. Rall, PhD, as the first Ombuds for faculty. Rall was an easy choice because he has served as sort of an unofficial ombudsman for the College of Medicine for more than three decades.
April 08, 2010
April 06, 2010
GreenStar Cooperative Market, a consumer-owned, democratically-run cooperative corporation in Ithaca, NY, has created an Ombuds program. According to GreenStar's blog, the new program will facilitate the communication of questions, concerns, problems or complaints from members and nonmembers.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office received for its proposed Patents Ombudsman Pilot Program. After considering the written comments from the patent community, the USPTO has decided to implement the Patents Ombudsman Pilot Program for a period of one year.
April 05, 2010
The Journal of the International Ombudsman Association has published its third issue. Editor in Chief David Miller has collected several articles that bear on the effectiveness of Ombuds programs:
The International Ombudsman Association's fifth annual conference starts April at the Marriott Hotel in New Orleans. A day of pre-conference training will be followed by two and a half days of sessions, meetings and networking events.
April 04, 2010
Within driving distance of the Crescent City, you will find many organizations with Ombuds programs:
Labels: Regional Events
KP is hiring a Health Care Ombuds/Mediator for Homestead Hospital in Santa Clara, CA. The Kaiser HCOM "functions as a trained alternative dispute professional offering patients, family members, staff & providers a conflict management program to resolve patient/provider healthcare disputes early thereby improving patient safety & reducing the costs of health care dispute resolution."
April 02, 2010
As faculty efforts to unseat the ISU provost became public, it was revealed that the University Ombuds helped count ballots.
There should be some guidance for Ombuds pulled into these sorts of governance disputes.
In the 1970's Mary Rowe, defined micro-inequities as “apparently small events which are often ephemeral and hard-to-prove, events which are covert, often unintentional, frequently unrecognized by the perpetrator, which occur wherever people are perceived to be ‘different.’”
April 01, 2010
The Washington Office of the Education Ombudsman has initiated a series of clinics at community sites for families with questions about the education system, or are experiencing concerns about their children’s education. Participants at the first clinic hosted by a local YWCA and the housing authority included Somali, Cambodian and Vietnamese residents.
The report from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey highlights the the Office of the University Ombuds, which opened in 2009. The office moved the university closer to UMDNJ President William F. Owen, Jr.'s goal of creating a culture where every member of the University community could feel free to discuss issues of great concern and sensitivity.