January 28, 2016

Blogger Calls for International Sports to Adopt Ombuds

Wayne Marriott, a mediator, conciliator, and conflict coach in New Zealand, has written a blog post explaining why international sporting bodies should implement Ombuds. Most significantly, he sees how the shared goal of integrity, makes Ombuds a natural fit for sport:

January 27, 2016

IOA Posts Agenda, Opens Registration for 2016 Annual Conference

The International Ombudsman Association's eleventh annual meeting will take place April 10-13 at the Westin Seattle.  Here's an overview of this year's agenda:

January 26, 2016

Columbia University to Host Ombuds Career Panel & Networking Event

Columbia's School of Professional Studies, which offers a MS in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution, will host an event for aspiring Ombuds on February 4, 2016 from 6:30 to 9:00 pm. The evening starts with a networking event with the panelists and other attendees. The panel will include speakers from federal, NGO, corporate, and education industries. 

January 25, 2016

Mary Rowe Article in Negotiation Journal

Mary Rowe, the former MIT Ombuds, has published a short article in October 2015 issue of Harvard's Negotiation Journal: "Negotiations Theory and Ombuds Practice." Although there is not an abstract, the last paragraph somewhat summarizes the article.

UC Davis Ombuds Posts Mid-Year Report

Susan Park, the Campus Ombuds at UC Davis, has published a report to summarize the activities of her office since its inception and to share the results of a new satsifaction survey. With the recent departure of Associate Ombuds Rita Callahan and Park's departure in April 2016, the report may be a critical document for the future of the office. 

January 21, 2016

IOA Offers Training in San Antonio

The International Ombudsman Association will offer its introductory training for  Organizational Ombuds in San Antonio, Texas next week.  Registration is still open and hotels rooms are available. 

Austrian Student Ombuds Posts 2015 Report

The Austrian Student Ombudsman, Josef Leidenfrost, has published his annual report for 2014-15.  The summary--which is submitted to the Federal Ministry for Science, Research and Economy, and to the Parliament--covers student issues from 69 public and private colleges, universities, and institutes.  The report said the Ombudsman received 506 cases and directly resolved 60%.

January 20, 2016

North Carolina Central University Seeks Ombuds-Title IX Hybrid

The public historically black university in in Durham is hiring an Assistant to the Chancellor. The position "will have dual responsibilities in the area of Title IX Coordination and serving as the campus ombudsperson." It appears that this is the first time a position has had such dual responsibilities at NCCU. The position is thus outside of the IOA Standards of Practice. Moreover, NCCU is not following the trend of universities designating their Ombuds as confidential, including another school in the same system, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

January 15, 2016

Job Posting: University of British Columbia Okanagan

UBC is hiring a part-time (80%) Ombuds for its campus in Kelowna. Reporting to both the UBC Ombudsperson, Shirley Nakata, and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Okanagan, the position will serve a student body of about 8,500. The search will fill a position established by Maria Mazzotta in 2013. 

Job Posting: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

The federal research facility in California that focuses on science and technology applications for national security is hiring an Employee Relations Program Leader. The position will "provide confidential, neutral and informal problem solving/conflict resolution and individual coaching services across disciplines in a variety of settings" in conjunction with the Laboratory’s Ombuds Program. 

Oregon Health & Science University Hires an Ombuds

The academic medical center in Portland appointed Merle Graybill as its first Ombudsman, according to a new website for the office. Graybill joined OHSU in 2014 as a Leadership Development Consultant and became the Ombuds in April 2015. Graybill previously was the Ombuds for Ohio University from 2008 to 2010. (OHSU Ombuds.)

January 13, 2016

Job Posting: Cal State Long Beach

The third largest California State University campus is hiring a full-time Ombuds. The position reports to the President and works with students (about 38,000 of them), staff, faculty, and other campus members. The search will fill a position currently held by Interim Ombuds Keith Freesemann following the retirement of Betsy Decyk.

January 12, 2016

Job Posting: UC Davis

UC Davis has opened a search for its next Campus Ombuds. Reporting to the Associate Chancellor/Chief of Staff, the position manages an Associate Ombuds (currently Rita Callahan) and staff person, and serves nearly 60,000 stakeholders. The search will replace Susan Park, who established the office in early 2013. 

National Park Service Said to be Considering Ombuds

Today, the Inspector General of the U.S. Office of the Interior released a report into allegations of employee misconduct at the Grand Canyon National Park.  After interviewing 35 individuals, the OIG found evidence of a long-term pattern of sexual harassment and hostile work environment, and a failure to properly report and investigate the complaints. In response, a National Park Service spokesman said the agency is considering more changes, including the appointment of an Ombuds.

January 11, 2016

University of Oregon Appoints Interim Ombuds; Outgoing Ombuds Releases Annual Report

UO has named Associate Professor Jennifer Reynolds to serve as Interim Ombuds through May 15, 2016 while a search is conducted for a permanent replacement for Bruce MacAllister, who left in November 2015.  Reynolds teaches in School of Law and is Director of the Appropriate Dispute Resolution Center.

January 08, 2016

UN Ombuds to Headline ABA Dispute Resolution Conference

John Barkat will be the featured plenary speaker at the American Bar Association, 18th Annual Section of Dispute Resolution Spring Conference in New York, April 7-9, 2016. Barkat, the Assistant Secretary-General and head of the United Nations Ombudsman and Mediation Services Office, will speak on Thursday morning and his remarks are titled "The Naked Prince: Conflict, Change & the Art of Collaborative Leadership." 

January 07, 2016

Job Posting: UC Santa Barbara

The fifth largest University of California campus is hiring a Campus Ombuds and Director of its Office of the Ombuds. The full-time position manages and directs an office with three other staff members which serves about 25,000 students, faculty, and staff. 

January 06, 2016

Job Posting: Transportation Security Administration

The Department of Homeland Security agency is hiring an Ombudsman Specialist for its Office of the Ombudsman in Arlington, VA. Located in the Office of Civil Rights and Liberties, Ombudsman and Traveler Engagement Office, the position responds to issues and concerns from TSA employees and the traveling public in a confidential, neutral, and independent manner.

UC Merced Announces New Ombuds

The University of California in Merced has appointed Callale Concon as the new campus Ombuds, effective January 12.  Callale is one of UC Merced's founding staff members, and is currently the Graduate Division’s assistant dean.

Former Ombuds at Western Carolina University Testifies in Lawsuit

WCU's former Ombuds was a witness in a lawsuit filed by a university maintenance worker who says was fired after exposing petty theft on campus. In October, a state hearing judge found for the terminated employee; the university plans to appeal. A news report about the case implies that Jayne Zanglein, who was the Western Carolina Ombuds in 2013-14, was a witness for the plaintiff:

January 05, 2016

Job Posting: North Carolina State University

The public research university in Raleigh is hiring its second ever Student Ombuds. The position will serve a student body of nearly 35,000 and reports to the Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs. This is a short search -- the expected hire date is February 1, 2016. 

Internship: United Nations, New York

The Office of the United Nations Ombudsman and Mediation Services is offering a full-time, two-month, unpaid internship in its New York offices.  The position supports UNOMS Mediation Services; helps identify systemic issues; supports outreach and advocacy efforts; and helps prepare data and reports.

January 04, 2016

Job Posting: Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee

The Office of the Ombuds at the private medical and graduate school in Milwaukee is hiring an Education Program Coordinator. The part-time (30 hours per week) position will serve as the first point of contact and "assist with follow up investigations, provide basic information on institution policies and practices and identify proper resources to resolve the situation when requested."

HBR Article Poses Questions for Ombuds

An article in the current issue of the Harvard Business Review asks "Can Your Employees Really Speak Freely?" The authors--two management professors--explore how organizations encourage feedback from employees. Among other things, they offer some criticism of Ombuds: