March 31, 2023

African Ombudsman Research Centre Hosts International Webinar About Higher Ed Ombuds

AORC, the resource and archive center of the African Ombudsman and Mediators Association, will offer a webinar "Showcasing Higher Education Ombudsman" on May 9, 2023. The free event will be offered in partnership with the Association of Canadian College and University Ombudspersons, the European Network of Ombuds in Higher Education, and the International Ombuds Association and feature an international panel of experienced Ombuds. Simultaneous interpretation will be available in English, French, Portuguese, and Arabic.

March 30, 2023

American Planning Association Appoints First Conference Ombuds

The professional association for U.S. urban planners has contracted with MWI to provide Ombuds services for its 2023 National Planning Conference in Philadelphia from March 31 through April 4, 2023, and virtually from April 26 through 28. Nnena Odim will serve as the Conference Ombuds for over 4,000 attendees, staff, exhibitors, and anyone participating in NPC23. Odim will practice to IOA standards. 

March 28, 2023

Job Posting: MWI

MWI, a global provider of outsourced Ombuds, mediation, and dispute system design services and training since 1994, seeks a full-time Director of Analytics & Reporting. The position will plan, manage, and analyze visitor data and create meaningful and actionable reports for MWI’s outsourced Ombuds clients following IOA Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. The full-time position will report to MWI's Founder and Executive Director, Chuck Doran. The  work may performed fully remotely, although some travel to client sites may be required.

Ombuds Discusses the Transformation of Leaders into Coaches

Federal Ombuds (and new IOA Board member and co-host of the IOA 2023 conference) Bina Patel was recently interviewed for Authority Magazine at She discusses the differences between leadership and management, and how coaching may serve to be an ideal tool for folks in positions of power. She said that, as an Ombuds, she is frequently helping helping leaders become more effective by adopting coaching strategies. She offers insights many Ombuds will find relevant to their work. (Medium.)

March 27, 2023

Job Posting: United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee

The National Olympic Committee for the United States will expand its Office of the Athlete Ombudsman with the hiring of an Assistant Athlete Ombuds. The position provides "independent and confidential advice to Team USA athletes regarding their rights, resources and responsibilities under the Ted Stevens Olympic and Amateur Sports Act, and all applicable rules and regulations from the International Olympic and Paralympic Committees, United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, International Federations and National Governing Bodies, as well as anti-doping and athlete safety rules and policies." The full-time, remote position reports the Athlete Ombudsman, Kacie Wallace, and joins two other Assistant Athlete Ombuds, Emily Azevedo and Bryce Boarman.

University of Kentucky Seeks Next Academic Ombuds

The public university in Lexington has opened an internal search for its next Academic Ombud. The position may be filled by a tenured or emeriti faculty member who provides services to students with academic issues. UK had one of the first university Ombuds in the United States and 29 faculty have served in the position over the last five decades. Alice Turkington, Professor of Geography, has served as the Academic Ombud for the past two years. The position reports to UK's provost and practices to IOA standards. (UK Now.)

March 24, 2023

Job Posting: University of Massachusetts Amherst

The largest public university in New England has opened a search for a full-time Associate Ombuds. The position reports to Martha Patrick, CO-OP, the University Ombudsperson, and serves faculty, staff, and students, with a focus on undergraduates. The position is eligible for a hybrid work schedule.

Ithaca College Opens Internal Search for Reformed Ombuds Program

The provost for the private liberal arts college in central New York has issued a call for volunteers to join a Faculty Ombuds Team. Over the past few years, Ithaca considered a couple of different models for its Ombuds program. For example, at one point there was a proposal for the Ombuds be a tenured faulty member, serving on a part-time basis, appointed to a three-year term, and reporting to HR with oversight over some faculty programs. The College also seemed to consider paying for Ombuds services. The current plan envisions a team of faculty given release time to serve as Ombuds. Moreover, and most significantly, they will generally practice to IOA standards. (Ithaca Intercom.)

March 23, 2023

Job Posting: Greater Albany Public Schools

Greater Albany Public School District 8J in Oregon is hiring its first Ombudsperson. Funded by a state grant for Latino/a/x and Indigenous Student Success, the new Ombuds will "develop a program of support to all staff as they work with students and families." The role will advocate for fairness while maintaining confidentiality. The position will work 191 days per year. 

Job Posting: Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services

The Bay State's Executive Office of Veterans’ Services is hiring an Ombudsperson for its Chelsea Soldiers Home. This new position will work with staff and residents at a historic and expanding facility, and reports to the executive director. The job description is ambiguous: some language indicates a Classical Ombuds role ("advocate on behalf of residents and staff of the Veterans’ Home and to receive, investigate and resolve through administrative action, in a timely manner, complaints filed by residents and staff"); yet other language is more in line with an Organizational Ombuds role ("provides neutral and confidential assistance to resolve conflict and serves as an advocate for fairness, source of support and information and act as liaison between conflicting parties [and] is neither an advocate for any individual or the home [and] does not keep records").

March 22, 2023

Job Posting: Arrow Security & Training LLC

AST, a small business that provides military training, security, and linguistic services to government and private sector clients is hiring its first Ombuds. The AST Linguist Ombudsman will "provide linguists a channel to voice issues, problems, and complaints without fear of repercussions." The full-time position will help facilitate informal resolution processes for employees throughout the continental U.S. and help surface issues and opportunities for systemic change. The position will be based in August, GA. 

ENOHE Webinar to Examine Handling Gender-Based Violence Cases

On May 12, 2023, the European Network of Ombuds in Higher Education will offer a webinar on "How to Deal with Gender-based Violence: The Potential Role of Ombuds Offices in Case Handling." Seven panelists from universities around the world offer a variety of perspectives.

More from ENOHE:

March 21, 2023

Job Posting: U.S. Census Bureau

The Department of Commerce agency is hiring two Associate Ombuds, one based in the Washington, DC, metro area (Suitland, MD) and one based in the Louisville, KY, metro area (Jeffersonville, IN). The GS-14/15 positions will report to the Census Bureau Ombuds, Bill Maurer, CO-OP. Occasional travel may be required and telework may also be possible. Relocation expenses may be paid. 

March 20, 2023

Job Posting: California University of Science and Medicine

CSUM, a newly accredited, private medical school in Colton, California, is hiring its first Executive Director, Office of Ombuds. The new position will serve all members of the medical school, including administrators, staff, faculty, and 520 students. The full-time position is expected to practice to IOA standards and report to the university president. 

Job Posting: Adtalem Global Education

The U.S. corporation that operates several for-profit higher education institutions (including American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Chamberlain University, EduPristine, Ross University School of Medicine, Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine, and Walden University) has opened a search for its first Ombudsperson. The fully remote, full-time position will develop and Organizational Ombuds office to serve Adtalem students.

Colorado State Legislature Introduces Bill to Create Courts Ombuds

The Colorado State House of Representatives is considering a bipartisan bill to create an Office of Judicial Ombudsman. HB23-1205 was co-sponsored by Representatives Mike Lynch (R-Minority Leader) and Jennifer Bacon (D-Assistant Majority Leader). The bill approved unanimously by the Judiciary Committee and has been sent to Appropriations. The intent of the legislation is to create a typical Organizational Ombuds program. It is clear about the Ombuds being confidential and independent, but it lacks explicit language about neutrality and informality.

March 17, 2023

Job Posting (RFP): Global Green Growth Institute

The international organization headquartered in Seoul seeks applications for its next Ombudsperson. The search will fill a role held by Kathleen Canul since 2019. The contract position serves over 500 employees across 39 countries. In addition to providing Ombuds services, the position will also support the GGGI Global Respectful Workplace Advisors program and provide internal training/coaching.

Job Posting: Amsterdam UMC

Amsterdam Universitair Medische Centra is hiring an Ombuds and Confidential Affairs adviser for its Ombuds and Confidential Affairs Office. The part-time position (28 hours/week) will serve over 15,000 Amsterdam UMC employees at two locations. (The medical center resulted from the affiliation of medical faculty from the University of Amsterdam VU University Amsterdam in 2018.) The position is contracted for six months. Applications are due by March 30, 2023. (Amsterdam UMC Posting.)

Job Posting: Phillips Academy Andover

The highly selective, private boarding school in Andover, Massachusetts, has opened a search for its first Ombuds. The part-time position (approximately 8-10 hours per week) will provide services to faculty, staff, and administrators and report to the head of school. The position is hybrid and will work both on campus and remotely. It is expected that the position will follow IOA standards.

Czech Technical University in Prague Faculty of Architecture Names First Ombuds

The CTU Faculty of Achitecture (České vysoké učení technické v Praze Fakulta architektury) has selected Dita Jahodová as its first Ombudsperson. In this new role, she will provide services for all members of the school: students and employees. Trained in sociology, she brings experience from academia (teaching at Charles University and Masaryk University), government work (Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs), and independent consulting to the position. She graduated from Charles University and earned a PhD at Masaryl University Brno. (CTU FA News; LinkedIn.)

ENOHE Announces 2023 Conference Program and Pre-Conference Training

The European Network of Ombuds in Higher Education has unveiled its full conference website and program for this year's conference, hosted by Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic. Immediately preceding the conference, ENOHE is offering a new Training Activity Programme. Registration for both events is now open.

Boise State University Expands Ombuds Services

The Ombuds Office for the public university in Idaho, which has been a resource only for faculty, has expanded its mandate to all employees. Two faculty members serve as Boise's Ombuds: Michelle Bennett and Manda Hicks. The practice to IOA standards. (Boise State News.)

UC Santa Cruz Signs Ombuds Charter

The University of California Santa Cruz has finalized a charter agreement for its Office of the Ombuds, which was re-established earlier this year. The document defines the Ombuds' privileges and responsibilities, and closely tracks the Declaration of Best Practices for University of California Ombuds Offices. The charter was signed by Campus Ombuds, Deidre "De" Acker, and the UCSC Chancellor. (UCSC Charter.)

CUNA Requests Federal Ombuds for Community Development Financial Institutions

Earlier this month, the Credit Union National Association made several recommendations to the U.S. House Ways and Mean Committee. A letter from the national credit union trade association was intended to improve acccess to the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund. Among other things, CUNA's letter suggested an Ombuds. “CUNA urges the CDFI Fund to establish an Ombuds Office to provide confidential, neutral, and independent sources of information and assistance regarding the CDFI certification and grant process,” the letter reads. “The Ombuds Office could help clarify and mediate confusion for CDFIs experiencing confusion or frustration during the application or recertification process and help improve the function and efficiency of the Fund.” 

Northwestern University Ombuds Provides First Report

Sarah Klaper, Northwestern's first University Ombudsperson, recently gave her first report to the university's Faculty Senate. Klaper said that her office had seen 361 visitors since it opened in August 2021. She told the faculty that her office should be significantly larger. “The faculty advocacy for this position has been extraordinarily strong,” Klaper said. “You’ve been very consistent and forceful, and yes, if you happen to be in a position to advocate for additional funding for my office for staff, that would be fantastic.” (Daily Northwestern.)

March 14, 2023

World Anti-Doping Agency Names First Ombuds and Adopts IOA Standards

WADA, the international foundation that coordinates the fight against drugs in sports, has selected Anna Thorstenson, as its first Athletes’ Anti-Doping Ombuds. For a one-year pilot period, she will provide dispute resolution assistance to athletes bound by anti-doping rules under the World Anti-Doping Code. The position was created as part of a range of governance reforms implemented last year. Terms of Reference for the position, make it clear that the WADA Ombuds will generally practice to IOA standards. Notable exceptions to the Ombuds' confidentiality include: "A matter that requires affirmative reporting by law;" or "To the extent necessary, if a party files a claim or complaint against the Ombuds or its staff, or her/his staff, alleging professional misconduct in the exercise of her duties."

Florida Gulf Coast University Selects Next Ombuds

Daniel Hoover has been appointed the University Ombuds for FGCU in Fort Myers, Florida. He will resume a program that has been dormant since the retirement of the prior Ombuds, Monique McKay, last year and the departure of Assistant Ombuds, Charlotte Bingham, who moved to Ivy Tech in Indiana. As the FGCU University Ombuds, Hoover will serve as a resource for all campus stakeholders, a population of nearly 20,000.

Letter to a Workplace Harasser

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management adjunct professor and former Ombuds, Mary Rowe, has some advice for employees who want to confront a workplace harasser. Rowe is the author of “‘Drafting a Letter’ for People Dealing with Harassment or Bullying: How Did this Option Evolve? How May it Help?”

March 10, 2023

Job Posting: DC State Board of Education

The Ombudsman for Public Education in Washington, DC⁠—a neutral and independent office that provides conflict resolution services related to public education⁠—is hiring an Assistant Ombudsman. The position provides a wide range of conflict management services for the DC Public Schools, which enrolls 50,000 students. "Work is non-standardized and widely varied, involving complex and significant variables including significant time spent planning, evaluating solutions and issues, and negotiating outcomes."

Seattle University Selects Ombuds

Sue Theiss has been appointed the next Ombudsperson for the private, Jesuit university in Washington state. She will serve faculty and staff is in a full-time role that has been significantly restructured since initially established in 2012 as a part-time position serving only faculty.

March 08, 2023

Job Posting: UC Davis

The Ombuds Office for the University of California Davis is hiring a contract Ombuds 3. This person would join an office with Lauren Bloom, Lindsey Ensor, Dana Hinojosa, and Jenny Vaccari. The office serves faculty, staff and students in Davis and Sacramento including a large public university and academic health care system. This contract position would cover an anticipated leave event and be the first point of contact for the office, handling intake and office management as well as presentations, trainings, and cases. This is a 50-100% variable position, benefits-eligible, and there are possibilities for remote work.

March 07, 2023

IOA Announces 2023 Board of Directors Election Result

The International Ombuds Association has announced the results of its latest Board of Directors election. Ten nominees were on the ballot, the largest group in several years. Five newly elected directors will take office at the Annual Meeting on April 11, 2023, for a three-year term. IOA Directors will convene shortly thereafter to elect new officers.

Job Posting: UNHCR, Hungary

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Office of the Ombudsman in Budapest is hiring Conflict Resolution & Mediation Officer.
The position provides Ombuds services for UNHRC personnel with employment-related concerns and conduct mediations, facilitated dialogues and other conflict resolution processes.

Federal Ombuds Speaks on Coaching Abrasive Managers

Laurel Gordon
, a longtime Federal Ombuds, will address the Bellevue [Washington] Breakfast Rotary Club on March 31, 2023, at 7:15 am. Her presentation, "Taming Abrasive Managers through Coaching" will draw on her years of Ombuds experience, conflict coaching certification, and mediation work. This is a rare opportunity to hear from a law enforcement Ombuds. (BBRC Events; LinkedIn.)

March 06, 2023

Job Posting: UNHCR, Kenya

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Office of the Ombudsman in Nairobi is hiring Conflict Resolution & Mediation Officer.
The position provides Ombuds services for UNHRC personnel with employment-related concerns and conduct mediations, facilitated dialogues and other conflict resolution processes.

UN Regional Ombuds Explains Role of Informality

Lara Khalife-Dagher, the New York Regional Ombudsman for the Office of the United Nations Ombudsman and Mediation Services, authored an article for UN Today magazine: "Resolving Conflict Through the Secret Weapon of Informality." Khalife-Dagher reflects on the informality principle, what it means, and why it is important, from the perspective of a UN Ombuds. She concludes that an informal process offers many visitors something more more important a viable outcome: the opportunity to be heard, understood and respected.

Ombuds at University of Colorado: Annual Report Reflects Lingering COVID Concerns

In the third year of the pandemic, t
he Ombuds Office at the University of Colorado Boulder reports cases have stabilized at 477 for the 2021-22 academic year. Ombuds Office Director, Kirsi Aulin, CO-OP, reported that students and staff showed signs of fatigue and burnout related to the pandemic. More significantly, she also noted an alarming trend among faculty. "In the last three years, the number of faculty who have told us that they are considering leaving their positions has risen from a low of 7% in 2029-20 to 43% in 2021-22."

March 03, 2023

Job Posting: UC Santa Cruz

The University of California Santa Cruz has opened a search for an Associate Ombuds. The full-time position will report to the new Campus Ombuds, Deidre "De" Acker, and help rebuild a program that serves faculty, staff, and students. The position will serve as the initial point of contact for most visitors.

Lehigh University Adds a Third Ombuds

Kathleen Hutnik, Lehigh's Associate Deputy Provost for Graduate Education, has joined Jennifer Swann and Anne Meltzer in the Ombuds Office. Together, the trio serve about 9,000 faculty, staff, and students at the private research university in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The Ombuds role is part-time for all three.