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Faculty Ombuds Officer Chosen

Published on Mon 08/30/21

Colleagues,

As we start the 2021 fall term, I want to take this opportunity to introduce Dr. John J. Buchanan as the newly selected Faculty Ombuds Officer at the university level. He is a professor in the Department of Health and Kinesiology and also serves as division chair of Kinesiology.


Dr. Buchanan has served Texas A&M University in multiple capacities for the past 22 years with a focus on faculty development and faculty conflict and resolution. He served nine years on the Committee on Academic Freedom, Responsibility, and Tenure. Additionally, he served four years on the College of Education and Human Development’s Tenure and Promotion Committee, while holding the position of Chair for most of those years. Dr. Buchanan’s contributions for his department are extensive. He served a total of nine years on the Health and Kinesiology Tenure and Promotion Committee, serving two of those years as Chair. Each of these experiences provided him with a unique perspective related to conflict resolution, faculty development, and/or policy implementation at the university, college, and department levels.


In this role, Dr. Buchanan will function as a confidential, neutral resource for faculty to raise and clarify issues and concerns, identify options, and request assistance to informally resolve workplace conflicts, including mediation services. Justice or fairness are central factors of the work of the ombuds officer and guide the office to support faculty. When informal resolution of conflicts fails, or when informal resolution is not advisable, the Faculty Ombuds Officer is available to counsel faculty regarding their options for formal action and direct them to the appropriate university rules, resources, and offices.

Faculty are encouraged to seek guidance regarding concerns at any time without fear of reprisal. The Faculty Ombuds Officer will hear individual or broader systemic faculty concerns confidentially, but does not serve notice to the university, cannot impose remedies or sanctions, and cannot enforce or change any policy, rule, or procedure. 


Dr. Buchanan can be reached via email at jjbuchanan@tamu.edu or by phone at 979-862-3229. As a reminder, please don't put anything confidential in your email.


The Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President would like to recognize and thank the outgoing Faculty Ombuds Officer, Dr. George Welch, for his outstanding service in this position for the last three years. His dedication to Texas A&M University has been truly remarkable, and our university is better for all that he has done to help faculty in their time of need.


We also thank the Faculty Ombuds Officer Search Committee for the outstanding job they did in reviewing each the applications, calling references, and holding interviews. The committee members included Co-chairs Patrick Louchouarn and John N. Stallone, Craig Coates, Fred Nafukho, Nancy Welsh, Claire Katz, Jon Jasperson, Michael Dewsap, Mark Westhusin, and Daniel Jimenez.


Please join me in congratulating Dr. Buchanan for his new role. 


Sincerely,


Patrick Louchouarn
Interim Vice Provost for Faulty Affairs and Interdisciplinary Initiatives
Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President