June 29, 2010

Office of Personnel Management Unveils Ombuds Program

A new website confirms the new Ombuds program for the federal agency that manages civil servants. The OPM established an Ombudsman Office in January 2010, "to provide a neutral, independent and confidential resource to review, identify, facilitate and timely resolve individual claims, concerns or complaints by OPM customers and employees."

The website explains what the OPM will and will not do and provides answers to frequently asked questions. The site also provides a copy of the office's charter, signed by the OPM Director. According to an OPM organizational chart, the Ombuds Office is headed by Richard B. Lowe and is staffed by one Ombuds, Barbara Malebranche. Lowe has worked for OPM for nearly 30 years and most recently was the Deputy Chief of Staff. Before joining the OPM Ombuds Office, Malebranche was the Director of Employee Relations for the Department of Education. OPM has been recruiting Ombuds, so there may have been several other hires since the org chart was posted in January. (OPM Ombuds Website; OPM Ombuds Charter; OPM Org Chart.)

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