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SOLD OUT | Virtual Foundations Course | December 2020
Monday, November 30, 2020 9:00 AM PDT to Friday, December 04, 2020
Category: Foundations Courses

Virtual Foundations of Organizational Ombudsman Practice Course

5-Day Course

9:00 AM – 12:30 PM PT | 12:00 PM  3:30 PM ET Monday/Tuesday
9:00 AM – 12:30 PM PT | 12:00 PM  3:30 PM ET Wednesday
2:30 PM – 6:00 PM PT | 5:30 PM – 9:00 PM ET Wednesday
9:00 AM – 12:30 PM PT | 12:00 PM  3:30 PM ET Thursday
9:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT | 12:00 PM  3:00 PM ET Friday

Times subject to change based on facilitator availability.

Registration & Fees | Course Description | Faculty


Registration Rates:

  • Members: $1,695
  • Non Members: $1,995

This course is sold out.

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Course Description 

“Foundations of Organizational Ombudsman Practice” is offered multiple times each year in various locations, and now, online! The course covers the fundamentals of the organizational ombuds role based on the principles of confidentiality, impartiality, independence, and informality. Learn how to work with visitors to an office as well as how to act as a change agent within your organization. Practice key ombuds skills of listening, asking questions, clarifying, generating options, and moving to actions throughout the ombuds process. In addition, an experienced and highly committed faculty of ombuds will share best practices around setting up an office and evaluating and communicating the effectiveness of the office.

Learn more about the Foundations course.

Who should attend:

The course is designed for recently appointed ombuds. Its objectives are to help new practitioners: 

  • Recognize the dimensions and parameters of the organizational ombuds role
  • Reflect on their own personal relationship to the role
  • Develop basic skills to perform the role effectively
  • Learn best practices
  • Identify resources to learn more
  • Build a community of practice

It is also beneficial for anyone desiring to enter the profession or establish an ombuds function in industry, government, education, and public or private social services agencies. This course applies to ombuds programs in organizational settings. It does not address some features unique to other models of ombuds practice, such as classical, advocate, or legislative.

Course Limit

24 participants



Professional Development Hours (PDH)

This course has been approved for 15 Professional Development Hours towards the Candidate for CO-OP® and CO-OP® credentials.

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Kirsi Aulin, CO-OP®
Director, Ombuds Office, University of Colorado Boulder

Bio coming soon.

Caitlan HendricksonCaitlan Hendrickson, CO-OP®
Director, Office of the Ombuds, University of Arizona

Caitlan Hendrickson is a Certified Organizational Ombudsman Practitioner (CO-OP) and directs the Office of the Ombuds at the University of Arizona. She has over fifteen years of experience in conflict transformation, including in higher education, court, non-profit, and business settings. Caitlan is bilingual in Spanish and English, has an extensive background in mediation, restorative practices, and mindfulness, and is the owner and founder of Mutuality Realized LLC / Caitlan Anne Consulting. In addition to her work in the conflict management field, Caitlan spent years working in the social service sector with marginalized communities. Her work in this area focused on multicultural inclusion, sexual and interpersonal violence, homeless and at-risk populations, food security, and social research.

Caitlan’s educational background includes a Master of Education in Human Relations, a Graduate Certificate in Educational Technology - Adult Learning and Training, and a Bachelor of Arts degree. For her B.A. degree, Caitlan completed a triple-major in Spanish, International Studies, and Planning, Public Policy, and Management, a double-minor in Peace Studies and Latin American Studies, and a professional focus in Sustainable Community Development. In addition, she has received over a thousand hours of professional training in conflict management practices, including certification in the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument, a specialty in teaching intercultural communication, and certification as a trainer for the VitalSmarts Crucial Conversations program. Currently, she is completing a doctorate in Educational Leadership as well as certifications in coaching and advanced organizational development. When she isn’t working or studying, Caitlan enjoys hiking, nature photography, stargazing, martial arts, yoga, traveling, and soaking up the awe-inspiring sunsets of the Sonoran Desert that she calls home.

Reese RamosMauricio (Reese) Ramos, CO-OP®
Director & University Ombuds, Virginia Tech

Through personalized coaching and guidance, Virginia Tech University Ombuds Reese Ramos strives to empower Hokies to navigate beyond problems to options that may resolve their situations.  He also offers training in conflict resolution, personal & professional development, and communication strategies.

Reese is an active member of the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) and has been a past IOA Board President.  He has facilitated ombuds trainings at previous conferences and has written dozens of articles on leadership, conflict management, and communication.

After graduating from Pepperdine University with a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts, he completed a specialized 15-unit certificate program in dispute resolution at Pepperdine School of Law’s Strauss Institute for Dispute Resolution.  He then earned his Juris Doctorate from McGeorge School of Law.  He has supplemented his extensive education with several hundred hours of mediation, negotiation, arbitration, and diversity training.

Prior to joining Virginia Tech, Reese has also worked as an Ombuds with the National Park Service, Earthjustice, Sandia National Laboratories, and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In the past, he has also been a mediator with Marin County Mediation Services and was in private practice, where he mediated disputes for Mosten Mediation Centers, the Los Angeles Superior Court, Voluntary Mediation Services, the Centinela Valley Victim-Offender Restitution Services, and SquareTrade, an on-line mediation internet company. 

Reese states, “One of my goals is to help people see the situation (problem, conflict, question) as it is and then to help them focus on how it could be. In other words, what needs to change and how do we go about creating that change? In the end, we are all “response-able” and empowered to change how we relate to any conflict.”

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Contact the IOA office at [email protected].