December 15, 2011

The Ombuds Year in Review: 2011 (Part I)

Overall, the past year has been a positive one for Organizational Ombuds profession. Several of the top stories of this year echo those of 2010. The list will be posted in three installments: today, December 20 and December 22.

10. In Memoriam -- Several notable Ombuds passed away in 2011, including: Walter R. Lynn (Cornell University); Florence Boroson (SUNY Stony Brook Ombudsman); John Wanjala (Portland State University); Robert John Ackermann (University of Massachusetts Amherst); Lee Preston (University of Maryland). Their contributions to the field and to their organizations were invaluable, and they will be missed.

9.  Post on New UCF Ombuds Draws Record Views -- A post on October 17 described a YouTube video by Shreya Trivedi, who was appointed the University of Central Florida Ombuds earlier in the year. Although the video has been viewed just a few hundred times, the Ombuds Blog post has been viewed more than 5,200 times. Go figure.

8. IOA Expands Outreach Efforts -- The association accomplished several things this year including: the creation of Regional Advisory Committees for international members; approval of a trademark for certification; a major upgrade for its website; creation of international scholarships to its annual conference; its first webinar series (on bullying); and the translation of its Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice into Spanish and French.

7. NY Ombuds for Developmentally Disabled Breaches Confidentiality -- Ombuds and others were appalled to learn that New York State's Ombudsman for the Office for People With Developmental Disabilities had been revealing the names of whisleblowers routinely.  The ethical breach undermined confidence in Ombuds of all types.

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