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Announcing Williams’ first-ever Ombudsperson

Williams faculty, staff and students,

I am very pleased to announce the hiring of Waged Jafer as the college’s first-ever ombudsperson—a new position that will serve as a resource for staff and faculty seeking neutral, informal and confidential assistance with a wide variety of workplace issues and concerns. As ombudsperson, Waged will provide guidance and improve the understanding of the college’s policies and procedures while also helping to create a fair, equitable and respectful work environment for all faculty and staff. The half-time ombudsman position, which reports to me, will also support administrative and academic units seeking help with communication, conflict resolution and interpersonal dynamics. Many faculty and staff have advocated for an ombudsman position at Williams, and I am excited that we have now taken this important step.

An experienced ombudsperson and conflict management consultant, Waged brings a strong academic background in conflict resolution, social justice and peace studies. She received a Ph.D. in interdisciplinary studies from the University of British Columbia (UBC). Waged served in many different roles while at UBC. As an instructor she taught courses in the university’s political science department and at the Social Justice Institute, and she also served as UBC Alma Mater Society ombudsperson for students. She also worked as the alternative dispute resolution specialist at the UBC Investigations Office, where she worked with students, faculty and staff to provide complaint intervention, case management and resolution options on matters arising from allegations of sexual misconduct, discrimination and harassment. 

Waged also was an ombudsman consultant at Quest University Canada and founded her own private consultancy. Most recently, she served as the regional ombudsperson for Near and Middle East with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Geneva, Switzerland, where she provided conflict resolution and conflict management services to the ICRC employees.

I want to thank the members of our search committee for contributing their time to this endeavor:

Keli Gail, committee chair; assistant to the president and secretary of the college
David Dewey, senior development officer and member of the Williams Staff Committee
Sara Dubow, associate dean of the faculty and professor of history
Danielle Gonzalez, chief human resources officer
Laura Gura, assistant general counsel and community & government affairs liaison
Molly Magavern, assistant vice president and VP for institutional diversity, equity & inclusion
Anthony Pernell-McGee, associate director of the ’68 Center for Career Exploration and director for inclusive career exploration
Tara Watson, professor of economics and member of the Faculty Steering Committee

Please join me in welcoming Waged Jafer to Williams. I look forward to introducing her to you in January. 


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