March 04, 2015

Guide to Ombuds Sessions at 2015 ABA Dispute Resolution Conference

The American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution’s Seventeenth Annual Spring Conference will feature three sessions about Ombuds.  The event, which is perhaps the largest gathering of dispute resolution professionals in the U.S., will be held at the Westin Seattle, April 16-18, 2015.
Here are the sessions that include Ombuds issues: 

An Effective Conflict Management System: The Critical Role of the Ombudsman (April 16, 2015)
An effective Conflict Management System should minimize risk, assist in protecting reputation, reduce financial and human costs and build trust to foster an ethical environment. This panel will discuss current conflict management systems and why they are incomplete. They will outline how an ombudsman program is a best practice in filling the gaps. They will overview the characteristics of ombudsman programs and describe the three major ombudsman models. The discussion will conclude with outlining the five core capabilities for setting up and sustaining a best in class ombudsman program. This is the formal presentation recommended by the DRS Ombuds Committee.

Speakers: Charles Howard, Shipman & Goodwin LLP; Sara Thacker, University of California, Berkeley; Jonathan Stier, King County Ombudsman's Office; and Melanie Lewis, Baker Hughes.
Responding to Problems Relating to Sexual Misconduct on Campus (April 17, 2015)
Sexual misconduct on college and university campuses, and responses to this issue, have garnered intense scrutiny as of late. The panel will discuss the value that a confidential and neutral ombuds office can contribute to the institution’s response to allegations of sexual misconduct and associated issues covered by recent regulatory developments in Title IX and the Clery Act, among others. The panel will discuss the unique role the ombuds plays in relation to parties involved with sexual misconduct cases, the challenges of potential reporting responsibilities, and how the ombuds can support and even enhance institutional compliance with regulatory requirements.

Speakers: Howard Gadlin, National Institutes of Health; Wayne Blair, University of North Carolina; Charles Howard, Shipman & Goodwin LLP; and Karen Connolly, Surman Law Group.
The Current State of Federal ADR (April 17, 2015)
The panelists will discuss various areas of ADR practiced within federal government, such as Workplace, Procurement/Contracts, Regulatory, Environmental, Litigation, and Freedom of Information Act requests. The presenters will also discuss many ADR techniques employed by the government, including mediation, ombudsmanry, facilitated group discussions, early neutral evaluation, settlement conferences, etc. The panelists will also highlight the opportunities for the ADR professionals to work with and for the federal government. Throughout the discussion, the panelists will answer questions from the audience.

Speakers: Victor Voloshin, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Jennifer Gartlan, Federal Maritime Commission; Debra Drecksel, Udall Foundation's U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution; and Miriam Nisbet.
(ABA DRS 2015 Conf Info.)

Related posts: ABA Dispute Resolution Conference (2007); ABA Dispute Resolution Annual Conference (2008); ADR Conference in New York (2009); 12th Annual ABA Dispute Resolution Conference Set for San Francisco (2010); ABA 2011 Dispute Resolution Conference Set for Denver; 2012 ABA Dispute Resolution Conference in Washington; ABA Launches Ombuds Task Force; American Bar Association 2014 ADR Conference Includes Two Sessions About Ombuds; ABA/Dispute Resolution Section Ombuds Committee Seeks Members; ABA Business Law Section: "The Ombuds Are Coming!"; ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Seeks Submissions for 2015 Conference; ABA Committee Outlines its Goals; ABA Dispute Resolutions Newsletter Focuses on Ombuds.

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