April 29, 2022

Job Posting: United Nations, New York

The Office of the United Nations Ombudsman and Mediation Services is seeking a Conflict Resolution Officer for its New York headquarters. The position will report directly to the Senior Conflict Resolution Officer, Lara Khalife Dagher, under the general supervision of the Chief of Office.

Ask a Manager Interviews Ombuds

Alison Green, author of the "Ask a Manager" blog and a book with the same name, recently interviewed Roy Baroff, CO-OP, the Faculty and Staff Ombuds at North Carolina State University. (Green's blog alone draws over 3.5 million visitors a month.) Baroff, who also just completed three years on the IOA Board of Directors, is a great spokesperson for Ombuds and IOA. Green's questions were extensive and thoughtful, giving Baroff the change to talk about the standards and provide examples from his practice. (Ask a Manager.) 

City of Gainesville Considering Ombuds

Commissioners for the city in northern Florida (which is home to the University of Florida) are looking into creating an Ombuds program. A proposal to create a new city department came before the the Gainesville City Commission this week. The backup material do not specify who the Ombuds would serve or how much it would cost. 

April 26, 2022

Job Posting: Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine

The new private medical school in Pasadena, California has re-opened a search for its first Ombuds Officer. One year ago, KPSOM sought a full-time, in-person Ombuds. The revised search seeks a part-time, hybrid Ombuds to establish an office and provide services to all stakeholders following IOA standards. Kaiser Permanente has a large network of HealthCare Ombuds/Mediator which provide early dispute resolution services for patient complaints, but this new Ombuds is not connected to that program. 

Call for Proposals: FCO-ACCUO 2022 Biennial Conference

The Forum of Canadian Ombudsman and the Association of Canadian College and University Ombudspersons are seeking speaker proposals for their biennial conference on October 17-18, 2022 in Ottawa. Presentation proposals should relate to the conference theme, "Together Again: Strengthening Ombuds Practice through Connectedness and Inclusion."

April 25, 2022

Job Posting: Florida Gulf Coast University

The public university in Fort Myers has opened a search for its next University Ombuds. Monique McKay has held the position since 2016. In 2020, the FGCU Ombuds office expanded with the addition of an Assistant Ombuds, Charlotte Bingham. The FGCU University Ombuds serves as a resource for all FGCU all stakeholders, a population of nearly 20,000.

University of Texas Austin Names Next Faculty Ombuds

Lynn Katz has been selected as the next UT Austin Faculty Ombuds, effective May 2, 2022. Katz will replace Caroline Bartel, who is completing her term, and join Chris McCarthy, who continues as the other Faculty Ombuds. This is a part-time role for Katz, who is a Professor of Civil Engineering. (UT Provost Announcement.)

Murray State Employee Union Demands an Ombuds

The union representing faculty, staff, student, and contingent workers at the public university in Murray, Kentucky, has adopted a platform with three goals: living wages and affordable healthcare; support for parents and caregivers; and respect and safety for all campus workers. Included in the specific demands, the Murray State University Chapter of the United Campus Workers of Kentucky is calling for an Ombuds. 

April 22, 2022

IOA to Resume In-Person Foundations Training in July 2022

The International Ombuds Association's signature, in-person training course will be offered in Chicago at the Renaissance Hotel on July 25 through 27, 2021. IOA's "Foundations," which provides the primary training for new Organizational Ombuds, has been available only virtually since October 2020. There has not been an in-person IOA event in two and a half years. 

Journal of IOA Article Unearths Roots of University Ombuds

The Journal of the International Ombuds Association has published original research by Ryan Smith, Michigan State University's Assistant Ombudsperson. Smith looked at the first-ever conferences focused on the work of university Ombuds over half a century ago. The profession envisioned at the time has evolved considerably.

April 21, 2022

Internship: Department of the Interior

The Office of Collaborative Action and Dispute Resolution for the U.S. Department of the Interior seeks a graduate summer intern to join their workplace team. The position is a hybrid and reports to the office in Arlington, Virginia three days a week, with a telework option. CADR is looking for someone with prior experience in dispute resolution work. The position is unpaid, but is intended to provide professional benefits such as eligibility for public interest funding from the intern's graduate school.

Kansas State University Opens Search for Faculty/Staff Ombuds

K-State has opened an internal search for an Ombudsperson for faculty and unclassified staff. Kansas State University has three Ombuds for employee concerns. The search will replace
Drew Smith; Tara Coleman and Anne K. Phillips continue in the role. (Assistant Dean of Diversity, Recruitment, and Retention Kimathi Choma provides Ombuds services to students.) The current vacancy will be filled by a "professional staff member." (K-State Today.)

April 20, 2022

Job Posting: University of Kansas

KU is seeking its next University Ombuds. Currently, Ada Emmett is the Acting University Ombuds and Mike Rozinsky serves as the part-time Associate Ombuds. Emmett has been serving as Acting Ombuds since December 2020, following the appointment of then-University Ombuds DA Graham to the role of Interim Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging at KU. Prior to that, Ada had been the part-time Faculty Ombuds since the Summer of 2019, and has been a member of the faculty since 2002, achieving full-professor equivalent at KU. The KU Ombuds reports to the provost and practices to IOA standards.

Job Posting: International Monetary Fund

The international financial aid organization is hiring a Projects Officer for its Ombuds Office for a three-year appointment. The position will report to IMF Ombudsperson, Thomas Zgambo, and provide a range of support including: research and information gathering; preparation of marketing and training materials; data managment and analysis, and preparation of an annual report; and interfacing with visitors. The job is based at the IMF headquarters in Washington, DC.

April 19, 2022

IOA Elects 2022 Board Officers

At its annual business meeting last week, the International Ombuds Association Board of Directors elected officers for 2022-2023
. Two of the officers are new to the board, three of the officers ending their terms are off the board, and two officer positions are vacant. As a result, only two of six officers have prior Board leadership experience.

April 18, 2022

Job Posting: University of Cincinnati

The public research university in Ohio is hiring an Associate Ombuds. The position reports to Kim Fulbright, the University Ombuds, and joins Associate Ombuds, Michael Brochu. has joined the UC Ombuds Office. The position provides services to about 60,000 students, staff, and faculty. The posting explains that the Ombuds office is confidential except for matters within the the scope of Title IX.

Call for Presenters: Cal Caucus 2022

The California Caucus of College and University Ombuds is seeking speaker proposals for its annual in-person meeting 2022. The signature caucus is set for November 6 through 9 at the Asilomar Conference Grounds. (Of course all plans are contingent on the course of the Covid pandemic.) Proposals are due by May 1, 2022.

IOA Seeks Data for 2022 Practice Survey

The International Ombuds Association survey team is encouraging all IOA members to participate in the 2022 Practice Survey. This biennial survey provides important insights on contemporary practices and trends for the Organizational Ombuds profession. Nearly 200 Ombuds have completed it so far, averaging just twenty-six minutes to do so. (For the 2020 survey, 235 out of 780 eligible IOA members participated.)

April 15, 2022

Secretary of Energy Celebrates First Decade of Ombuds Office

In a public video, Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm marked the tenth anniversary of the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of the Ombudsman. She said that, "The Ombuds team gives DOE's staff access to an independent, confidential resource to help navigate conflicts and challenges that may arise in the workplace." She said it was recognized as a model program for the federal government and especially important as the department helps address the climate crises and develop clean energy. She recognized and thanked Director Tonya Mackey. The office also includes three Associate Ombuds: Jeff Anderson, Lexi Wolfe, and Chris Vermillion. (YouTube.)

Interview Participants Sought for Research on Contracted/Outsourced Ombuds Work

Kennesaw State University Professor of Conflict Management and former University Ombuds, Tim Hedeen, and his colleague, Diene Guedes, are seeking 'outsourced' or 'contracted' Ombuds (those who deliver services through arrangements other than as a formal employee of the organization served) practitioners for a research project. They promise to share their findings with the Ombuds community later this year and would welcome any participation. If you serve in such a capacity and would participate in a short interview, please contact Diene to arrange a convenient time (dguedes[at]students.kennesaw.edu).

NPR Piece on Workplace Conflict Cites Ombuds

On April 13, 2022, National Public Radio's Life Kit podcast offered some advice on "How to Tackle Workplace Conflict Head-On." The piece included some wisdom from an Ombuds and also recommended consulting an Ombuds.

Here's a snippet:

April 13, 2022

Job Posting: UC Santa Barbara

The Office of the Ombuds at the University of California Santa Barbara is seeking an Assistant Ombuds. The position will take the lead on undergraduate student cases, programming, and outreach, including social media; and will support the overall mission of the office through case intake, triage, and data analysis. The Assistant Ombuds will join Associate Ombuds, David Rasch and Don Lubach, and report to the Campus Ombuds, Caroline Adams. This new, reclassified position replaces the Assistant Ombuds/Office Manager position which previously included front office reception and financial administration duties.

IOA Virtual Course: Conflict Theory for Ombuds

International Ombuds Association has a new professional development offering, "Conflict: Theory and Applications for the Organizational Ombuds." The four-day, on-line course for newer Ombuds will be taught by Sue Theiss on June 21-24, 2022. Theiss has been the University Ombuds for Oregon State for the past decade and previously established the Ombuds program at the University of Arkansas and co-chaired the Ombuds program at the University of Arizona. The course is limited to 30 participants, who must have completed IOA's Foundations.

ENOHE Sets 2022 Conference in Athens

The European Network of Ombuds in Higher Education has announced preliminary details for its annual conference hosted by the National Technical University of Athens, Greece on June 7-10, 2022. The conference will be the first in-person event for ENOHE since 2019. The full program is not yet available, but the overall timetable, registration details, and some of the sessions are known.

April 12, 2022

Job Posting: University of Rochester

The private research university in Upstate New York is hiring its first University Ombuds. "This newly created position ... will be the lead staff person responsible for the Office of the University Ombuds which will include having the lead responsibility for directing the University’s new Ombuds Affiliates Program and meeting the training needs of its assigned members." Rochester's Ombuds program has gone through a couple of iterations in the last few years.

IOA Honors Professional Leaders at 2022 Conference

At its annual conference last week, the
International Ombuds Association debuted a new award and also recognized several outstanding retired members. Both awards show appreciation for significant contributions to the Organizational Ombuds profession and the association. IOA's first Trailblazer Award was given to Chuck Howard, for his lifetime of leadership and contributions, including serving as IOA's first Executive Director and writing two books.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute Opens Internal Search for Ombuds

WPI is soliciting applications from current faculty members interested in serving as the next Ombuds. The Ombuds Office is currently staffed by Christina DeVries (a staff member in the advancement department) and Dan Dougherty (faculty member in computer science). The Ombuds serves faculty, staff, and students and practices to IOA standards. Applications are due by April 25, 2022. (WPI News.)

April 11, 2022

New Austrian Student Ombuds Appointed

Anna-Katharina Rothwangl, the Deputy Ombudsman at the Austrian Student Ombudsman Office at the Austrian Ministry of Higher Education, has been appointed as the provisional head of this office by the Austrian Federal Minister of Higher Education Martin Polaschek. Rothwangl succeeds Josef Leidenfrost, who retired on April 1, 2022 after 21 years of serving the students and institutions as National Student Ombudsman.

Save the Date for FCO-ACCUO 2022 Biennial Conference

The Forum of Canadian Ombudsman and the Association of Canadian College and University Ombudspersons will hold their biennial conference on October 17-18, 2022 in Ottawa. (The regularly scheduled conference in April 2021 was delayed due to the Covid pandemic.) FCO and ACCUO will post a call for speakers and registration details soon. (FCO News.)

April 07, 2022

Job Posting: UC San Francisco

The health sciences campus of the University of California has opened a search for a full-time Associate Ombuds position to replace Jon Lee, who is joining UC Santa Barbara’s HR Department of Labor and Employee Relations. The Ombuds position will be a hybrid, full-time position, with expectations of regular on-site team meetings as well as visitor services in-person as requested.

UC San Francisco Adds an Associate Ombuds

Misty Loetterle has been hired as an Associate Ombuds at the UCSF Office of the the Ombuds office at UCSF as a new Associate Ombuds. She joins Ellen Goldstein, Director and Campus Ombudsperson, Maureen Brodie, Ombudsperson, and Kate Flynn, Associate Ombudsperson. Loetterle comes to the position after 13 years at UCSF, most recently as Chief of Staff for the Office of Diversity and Outreach.

April 06, 2022

Midwest Political Science Association Renews Conference Ombuds

Tyler Smith will return as the 2022 Conference Ombuds for regional association for political science scholars for a second year. Smith was the University Ombuds at Northeastern Illinois University from 2019 to 2021. He is now a contractor with the National Institutes of Health, Center for Cooperative Resolution/Office of the Ombudsman. (MPSA Conf Instructions.)

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Opens Internal Search for Next Faculty Ombuds

Nebraska's flagship public university is seeking applications to replace one of its two faculty Ombuds. The new Ombuds will replace Marjorie Kostelnik and join Rodrigo Franco Cruz. To ensure that the office is accessible to all faculty, only applicants outside of Cruz's department (Agriculture and Natural Resources) will be considered. The position is open only to associate or full professor in any track or have emeriti. The incumbent is expected to join IOA and complete Foundations training. (UNL News.)

Helen Davies: Former Ombuds at University of Pennsylvania

Helen C. Davies, an Ombuds for the Penn School of Medicine in the 2000's, passed away on March 23 at the age of 96. Davies was a long-time member of the faculty as a professor of microbiology. Her other appointments included serving as Associate Dean for Students and Housestaff Affairs in the Perelman School of Medicine, and most recently as a College House Fellow. (UPenn Almanac; Ware House Bio.)

Save the Date: Cal Caucus 2022

The California Caucus of College and University Ombuds has announced dates for its annual in-person meeting and other virtual events in 2022. The signature caucus is set for November 6 through 9 at the Asilomar Conference Grounds. Of course all plans are contingent on the course of the Covid pandemic.

April 01, 2022

IOA Updates Standards of Practice

International Ombudsman Association's Board of Directors has approved updates to the documents that define professional standards for the Organizational Ombuds profession. The IOA Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics were originally drafted in 2009 as part of the merger of the associations predecessors, The Ombudsman Association and the University and College Ombuds Association. The revisions do not significantly alter the parameters of Ombuds' practices.