IOA 2023 Conference Schedule

 Day 1 | Monday, 3 April


6:00 – 8:00 AM PT    

Early Bird Activities

Pilates at 6:30-7:00 AM in Blakely.

Morning Run at 6:00 AM. Meet in Foyer to go on a two-mile light run through Downtown Seattle.

7:00  – 8:00 AM PT

Breakfast and Coffee Talk | Grand Ballroom

Join your colleagues for topical discussions each day.

8:00 AM – 8:30 AM

Break Grand Foyer

8:30 – 9:00 AM PT 

Welcome/Conference Open | Grand Ballroom 

9:00 – 10:00 AM PT 

Roundtable Discussions | Grand Ballroom

Start the conference by meeting people and sharing new ideas on a variety of hot topics relevant to the ombuds profession, including the use of social media, strategic outreach, navigating leadership challenges, and reporting. Hop from topic to topic (and table to table) for four 15-minute roundtable discussions.

10:00 – 11:15 AM PT

Keynote: Amy Gallo | Grand Ballroom

Turning Challenging Interactions into Productive Change

We all want to get along with the people we work with — but it seems like some people make it particularly hard to do so. And for the Ombuds, it’s imperative that we can successfully navigate challenging colleagues, particularly when surfacing systemic issues and opportunities for change.  In this talk, you’ll learn about eight familiar types of challenging colleagues (including the insecure boss, the pessimist, the know-it-all, and the biased coworker), why they behave the way they do, and strategies for working constructively with each one. No matter who you’re dealing with, Gallo provides the compassion, encouragement, and tools you need to prevail on your terms – and make change along the way.

11:15 – 11:30 AM PT


11:30 AM — 12:30 PM PT 

 Session Block 1

Session 1A | Ombuds “Pinspiration” and Change Agent in the Tech Sector: Introduction to the Pinterest Ombuds Program | Cascade I

Donna Douglass Williams, JD, CO-OP®, Christine Deputy, Teresa Ralicki, CO-OP®Shawday Berstler, Amira Day Dallafior, JD, Patty Lee, JD, Kishorn Henry-Walker

Session 1B | A Novel Idea For Reengaging Those In Conflict | Pike

Pete Alexander, PhD

Session 1C | The Humility Project: Thinking of Our Ombuds' Selves Less | Pine

Tessa Byer, CO-OP®

Session 1D | Try Again: Reengaging with Games in Ombuds Marketing and Practice | Vashon

David Schwartz, PhD, CO-OP®

12:30 – 2:00 PM PT

Networking Lunch | Grand Ballroom

Newcomer Lunch: First-Time Attendees & New Members Welcome | Fifth Avenue

2:00 — 3:00 PM PT

Session Block 2

Session 2A | Creating Our Own User Manuals: Ombudsing With Neurodiversity in Mind | Cascade I

Israela Brill-Cass, JD

Session 2B | Being a Change Agent for Diversity and Inclusion Using Data and Change Management Methodology  | Pike

Alexandre St-Jean, Lianna Ferran & Stephanie Kim

Session 2C | Transforming Tolerance into Belonging  | Pine

Kimberly Howard

Session 2D | Moral Conflict: Creating Dialogue Across Values and Beliefs | Vashon

John Howard, PhD

Session 2E | Ombuds Bringing Change: Stories Across Continents and Sectors | Cascade II

Wiktoria Maslowska

 3:00 — 3:30 PM PT

 Break | Entire Grand Foyer

3:30 — 4:30 PM PT

Sector Meetings 

Academic | Cascade I

Scott Deyo and Patricia Ponce

International | Pine

Gigi Anderson, Sophia Qiao, and Angelica Alejandro

Corporate | Pike

Ismail Baki

Government | Cascade II

Tyler Smith and Jason Baker

K-12 | Vashon

Monique Bookstein

Open/Unhosted | Ballroom

4:30 — 5:15 PM PT

End of Day Learning Circle | Grand Ballroom

5:15 — 6:30 PM PT

Ombuds Stories | Grand Ballroom

6:30 — 8:00 PM PT

Welcome Reception | Grand Foyer

8:00 PM PT

The Afterparty - Explore Seattle together or take it easy! Enjoy informal meetups at the Ombuds Lounge. 

Reconnect with old colleagues and hit it off with new ones. If you haven’t already made plans, stop by the Ombuds Lounge to meet up with a group.

Day 2 | Tuesday, 4 April


6:00 – 8:00 AM PT

Early Bird Activities

Morning Run at 6:00 AM. Meet in Foyer to go on a two-mile light run through Downtown Seattle.

Pilates at 6:30-7:00 AM in Blakely.

Walking at 6:30 AM on Tuesday. Join your colleagues for a brisk early morning walk. Decompress and focus while taking in the Seattle scenery. Leaves from the Foyer at 6:30 am

7:00 –8:00 AM PT

Breakfast and Coffee Talk: Faith and Ombudsing | Grand Ballroom

Join your colleagues for topical discussions each day.

CO-OP® Breakfast | The Loft

All certified CO-OP® Members and anyone interested in receiving the CO-OP® certification are invited to a special breakfast. 

8:00 – 8:30 AM PT 

Break Grand Foyer   

8:30 – 9:30 AM PT

Keynote: Sarah Freiesleben | Grand Ballroom

The Agency of Change: Condition Tending for Dynamic Quality

Symbiosis is a necessary ingredient for evolution. This means the developments humanity needs to sustain itself depend on encounters that feel like conflict. Individually and collectively, we need to be able to identify and navigate desirable difficulties to influence positive change in the world. Can ombuds help create the conditions for this?

9:35 – 9:45 AM PT

Break Grand Foyer

9:45 — 10:45 AM PT 

 Session Block 3

Session 3A | No Prince(ss) is Coming: Specific Techniques for Ombuds-led Culture Change | Cascade I

Susan Raines, PhD

Session 3B | Dancing to the Edge of Neutrality Pike

Jennifer Mahony, JD, Linda Brothers, JD, CPCC, CO-OP®, and Katie Manderson

Session 3C | Trusted Navigation and Career Support: The Career Counseling Ombuds | Pine

Don Lubach, PhD

Session 3D | Creating Change When the Sun Doesn't Shine in Your Institution | Vashon 

Sarah Klaper, JD, Katherine Greenwood CO-OP® & Jessica Kuchta-Miller, JD

Session 3E | Divided We Fall: Tackling Polarization in the Workplace | Cascade II

Rachel Nicholson, CO-OP® and Christopher Artis

10:45 –11:00 AM PT

Break | Grand Foyer

11:00 AM — 12:00 PM PT

Session Block 4

Session 4A | Getting a CLEW: Ombuds Facilitating Change and Bridging Gaps Via New Chair Leadership Engagement Workgroup | Cascade I

Melanie Jagneaux, JD, CO-OP® and Alicia Booker PhD

Session 4B | Ripped From the Higher Ed Headlines: How Might the Ombuds Help? | Pike

Julia Farmer, PhD, CO-OP®

Session 4C | Powerful Oral and Data Storytelling: Encouraging Systemic Change by Communicating Impact | Pine

Tina Hinh, CO-OP® and Balint Balassa, CO-OP®

Session 4D | How Ombuds Programs Empower D&I and the Worker Voice | Vashon

Sana Manjeshwar, JD, SPHR, CO-OP®, Janet Vantriet, PCC, SPHR, Alyssa Robbins, PHR, CO-OP®, Takis Bogdanos, LPC, and Diana Wu, PHR

Session 4E | Who are We, and What Do We Do? Insights from the 2022 Practice Survey | Cascade II

Jennifer Schneider, PhD, CO-OP®, Timothy Hedeen, Phd, Mary Rowe, PhD, and Hector Escalante, EdD

12:00 — 1:15 PM PT

Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon | Grand Ballroom

1:15 — 2:15 PM PT

Session Block 5

Session 5A | Data Storytelling: Inspiring Change in the Organization and the Ombuds Profession Cascade I

Wayne Blair, Angelica Alejandro, and Arlene Pantua, RSW

Session 5B | Talking Circles for Ombuds: Engaging in Dialogue and Building Community | Pike

Kristine Paranica, JD and Tessa Byer, CO-OP®

Session 5C | Internal v. Outsourced Ombuds: Is One Better? Is There a Difference? | Pine

Geetha Ravindra, JD, CO-OP®, Brian Bloch, CO-OP®, Israela Brill-Cass, JD, and Timothy Hedeen PhD

Session 5D | Can Ombuds be Leadership Coaches: A Pilot at the University of Washington | Vashon

Ruthy Rosenberg, JD, Chuck Sloane, SPHR, and Sara Kim, PhD

Session 5E | A Case Study: Creating an Inclusive Workplace for Your Black and Your Female Workforce | Cascade II

Catherine Mattice, MA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP

2:15 — 2:30 PM PT

Break | Grand Foyer

2:30 — 3:30 PM PT

Afternoon Snack Sessions | Grand Ballroom

Over the course of an hour, pick, choose, and explore bite-sized, interactive presentations on a variety of Ombuds topics relevant to practice, office setup, working with leadership, and system design.  Our presenters will be simultaneously sharing short micro-learning sessions, allowing you to attend multiple sessions.

3:30 — 4:00 PM PT

 Break Grand Foyer

 4:00 — 4:45 PM PT

Mary Rowe Keynote: Brian Bloch, CO-OP® | Grand Ballroom

An Inside-Out approach to Becoming an Effective Change Agent  

How many of us dreamed of being an ombuds when we grew up? So then, how and why did we choose this profession? Brian will help us explore our own paths—and the personal values that illuminate our paths—by stories of his ombuds journey working with Faith-based organizations, a global non-profit, and Indigenous American federal employees. He’ll discuss how our values help us serve individuals, groups, and the systems we work with.

4:45 — 5:00 PM PT

 Break Grand Foyer

5:00 — 5:45 PM PT

 End of Day Learning Circles | Grand Ballroom

5:00 — 6:00 PM PT

 Experience: On Display | Fifth Avenue

Silent Auction - New this year!

Attendees will have the chance to take home select work at our inaugural silent auction, which will be held during the Experience On Display event in support of IOA conference scholarships. Winning bidders must pick up and pay for items at the IOA Registration Desk on Wednesday morning before 12 p.m.

6:00 — 7:00 PM PT

 Attendee Experience Activities | Grand Crescent

Join us in the "Ombuds Lounge" for games and other fun activities.

7:00 PM PT

Dinner with an ExpertDiscuss your chosen topic with an experienced ombuds and a small group of peers at a local restaurant. Groups will depart from the IOA Attendee Lounge at about 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted. Sign-Up today!

Day 3 | Wednesday, 5 April 


6:00 – 8:00 AM PT

Early Bird Activities

Morning Run at 6:00 AM. Meet in Foyer to go on a two-mile light run through Downtown Seattle.

Pilates at 6:30-7:00 AM in Blakely.

7:00 – 8:00 AM PT

Coffee Talk and Breakfast | Grand Ballroom

Join your colleagues for topical discussions each day.

8:00 – 8:30 AM PT 

Break | Grand Foyer

8:30 – 9:30 AM PT

The Howard Gadlin Undebate: The Future of the Profession: What would happen if we removed independence from the standards of practice? | Grand Ballroom

Panel: Hector Escalante, EdD, Sana Manjeshwar, JD, SPHR, CO-OP®, Donna Douglass Williams, JD, CO-OP®  

Moderator: Ellen Miller, IOA Executive Director

9:30 – 10:00 AM PT

Learning Circles | Grand Ballroom

10:00 — 11:30 AM PT

What Would You Do? Ethical Dilemmas for New Ombuds | Fifth Avenue
Mentoring Subcommittee

This is a session for any practicing ombuds with less than two years of experience. Experienced ombuds from the Mentoring Subcommittee will present a variety of realistic scenarios for the new ombuds to practice according to the IOA standards of practice. This is an interactive session where all new ombuds get to try out the scenarios.

Limited Space Available: First 50 attendees. 

10:00 — 11:30 AM PT

What Would the Ombuds Do? | Grand Ballroom

Finish the conference with some thoughtful analysis of tricky ombuds issues with your colleagues as part of facilitated discussion groups. The discussion groups will be offered by skill level and include a scenario to analyze together through large and small group discussions.

11:30 AM —12:00 PM PT

Farewells | Grand Ballroom