November 16, 2012

Was Paula Broadwell an Ombuds?

The biographer of former CIA Director David Petraeus says that she was once an Ombudsperson at Harvard. On October 26, 2012, Broadwell gave the keynote address at the University of Denver's Alumni Symposium. In a video posted to YouTube this week by DU, Broadwell says:

My experience here [at DU] was enriched by professors like Karen Feste, who teaches in the conflict resolution program. Karen taught me something very important: That instrument of power, the military? Well, we can't shoot our way or kill our way or bomb our way out of every conflict. Sometimes diplomacy is critical.

I learned some great skills in her class. I can negotiate with my five- and six-year old insurgents at home now. [That's] very helpful. I actually became an Ombudsperson for Harvard University when I went. That was because of the skills I gained in Karen's class and some of the practical work we did in the community here....
In addition, Broadwell's LinkedIn profile (now scrubbed, but archived at FreePublic) states that she was "Harvard Ombuds Officer Chair" between 2005 and 2007. Broadwell may have used her maiden name, Kranz, while earning a master's at the Kennedy School of Government, but there is little public information about her work as an Ombuds under either name. (YouTube, starting at 12:00; DU Alumni Symposium; Boston Herald; FreePublic.)

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