December 28, 2020

2020 Year in Review: Transitions

This annual summary of the most important stories about Organizational Ombuds news comes in three parts. It starts with a review of people who retired and passed away, and a recap of new and closed programs. Tomorrow, the first part of the top stories.

Retirements -- Many notable Ombuds retired last year, including:
  • Margret Ammann, SAP;
  • Lavada Austin, Cal Poly Pomona;
  • Shereen Bingham, University of Nebraska Omaha;
  • Maureen Brodie, University of California San Francisco;
  • Jenna Brown, University of Denver; 
  • Deanna Clingan-Fischer, Iowa State University;
  • Niek Graafland, Delft University of Technology;
  • Cathryn Heslep, MacEwan University;
  • Jim Kennelly, Carleton University;
  • John D. McCamus, York University;
  • Anita Pouliot, University of Western Ontario; and
  • Mary Steinhardt, University of Texas Austin.

In Memoriam 
-- Colleagues remembered several Ombuds who passed away:

  • Don Daudelin, Western Illinois University;
  • Larry M. Julien, Michigan Technological University;
  • Stan Soffin, Michigan State University;
  • Charles Ellinger: University of Kentucky;
  • Ron Slater,  University of Pittsburgh; and
  • Ross Brinkert, Penn State Abington (who passed while still working as an Ombuds).

New and Expanded Offices
-- Despite the global recession brought on by the COVID pandemic, there were 86 job posting and most were in the second half of the year, indicating optimism and continued growth for the profession. In total, 47 organizations created or increased the reach of their Ombuds programs in 2020:

  • American Academy of Religion;
  • American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies;
  • Archaeological Institute of America & Society for Classical Studies;
  • BI Norwegian Business School;
  • Clark University;
  • Central Arizona College;
  • CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security;
  • City of Lublin, Poland;
  • City of Seattle, Washington;
  • College of Wooster;
  • Columbia Theological Seminary;
  • Comics Studies Society;
  • Daemen College;
  • Digital Games Research Association;
  • Gettysburg College;
  • Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences;
  • International Ombudsman Association;
  • Jackson State University;
  • Leipzig University;
  • LUCA School of Arts;
  • Max Delbrück Center;
  • Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics;
  • Milwaukee Area Technical College;
  • National Bureau of Economic Research;
  • New Austria and Liberal Forum;
  • Office of the Auditor General of Canada;
  • Pacific Northwest College of Art;
  • Pikes Peak Community College;
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences;
  • Salisbury University;
  • Society for American Archaeology;
  • Strategic Management Society;
  • State University of New York in Potsdam;
  • Trinity College;
  • Universidad San Francisco de Quito;
  • University of Évora;
  • University of Gjakova;
  • University of Michigan Medicine;
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln;
  • University of Rochester;
  • Vancouver Public Schools;
  • Washtenaw Intermediate School District;
  • West Chester University;
  • West Contra Costa Unified School District;
  • Westminster College;
  • Winthrop University.

Closed Offices
-- It is notoriously difficult to track Ombuds offices closing, because there is usually no public announcement. Last year at least four were closed:

  • Cal Poly Pomona;
  • Halliburton (not closed, but drastically downsized);
  • MacEwan University;
  • Metropolitan State University of Denver; and
  • University of Denver.

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