The Ombudsman Papers: Two

Nov. 28th, 2023

I observe, this morning, that yesterday, when archiving these papers, I began with the negative telling of this experience, the shadow of the experience, the great teaching that came from that. In actuality, there was tremendous beauty in this role, and it was a role in which I felt perfectly at home, and loved as much as I did dancing. The senior ombudsman was supportive of moving beyond the mundane and simple task of managing the office, and gave me tasks to learn, and to grow. My brain loves problem solving, and my heart seemingly has an abundance of warmth and genuine care for people. It was my first full time job after graduating from Cal Arts, and I was continuing to process the body/mind/soul imbalances. 

There was a collection of papers collected by an Ombuds scholar that I was set to task to help go through, and I am remembering I read most of them, then turned to other readings, to deepen my understanding of the job. The office paid for my mediation certification course, and I learned things that, in hindsight, are in alignment with the Hawaiian within, and the way in which a process called hoʻoponopono is a part of making relationships right, being in healthy relationship. I learned in this office, that my style of communication reflected the harmful style of communication growing up, and that it was possible to learn new skills.

I was grateful that, on my lunch hour, that there was a large gymnasium nearby, and I could get in a quick yoga session on my lunch hour, and after hours, there was free time in the gymnasium in which I could go about contemporary dance reflections.

I somehow understood, when creating these papers, that I was experiencing a great creative moment, which comes naturally, with a deep dive into any body of literature, and being curious, but the work was not tied (thankfully perhaps) to any formal academic study, hence never received the type of attention perhaps it would have benefited from. 

So, I publish a smattering into the future, on internet archive, and also, to my own personal google drive, and  wonder, how long after I have passed they will be there, as a publication into the future. I humbly remember, at this moment, a good friend and author, Melissa Block, when we met last week after a long stretch of not connecting due to COVID19, I wish someone would study your brain. I suppose a part of this process entails mending ego, pushing back against all the destructive things said in the course of living, an action of stating a fact. My brain works well, and manages both creative and analytical tasks well, although, with age, it is changing.

I push back, also, in this moment, the stories of Hawaiians being stupid, and lazy, and allow this to be healing and balm for the historical harm, and reclaim the right to say, the Hawaiians were and are an intelligent people, even when the blood line gets creative, and embraces people from all lands.

I think actually, I will publish these to Amazon, there, they will for as long as that huge corporation exists. May make a few pennies, dimes, and nickles even!

The Writings and Reflections

A Campus Ombuds Profile. Conflict Management in Higher Education Report (2003) 

The Taste of Conversation, an Oral Histoy of Stanley V. Anderson . California Caucus of College and University Ombuds: The Journal (2003) The Cal Caucus limits its paper size to 10 pages. 

Shortened version in the Cal Caucus Journal

Ombuds 101: An "Idiots Guide" to Ombudsing (undergoing revision) The Basic Ombuds Model. (wonder where this is!)

A Nuts & Bolts Application of the Basic Ombuds Model: an Academic Ombuds Office Study

Catch-up” with Ombudsmania: Expanding The Theoretical Base of Ombudsing: A Campus Ombuds Process, Part I. 

Catch-up' with Ombudsmania: Expanding the Theoretical Base Part 2: Is Ombudsing Like Mediation? 

The Parallel Socio Cultural Evolution of Ombudsing

The Taste of Conversation, an Oral History of Don Harstock (this work is lost somehow in transition)

Work in Progress The History of the Categorization of Ombudsmen. Work in Progress (this is lost also)


The Case Study Project: Campus Ombuds; What do they do and How do they do it?

Presented at the California Caucus of College and University Ombuds Annual Conference, Asilomar Conference Grounds THE RIGHT STUFF: The Habit, Heart and Science of Ombudsing (2002)

The Ombuds Profile Project: Campus Ombuds: Who are They? 

Presented at the California Caucus of College and University Ombuds Annual Conference, Asilomar Conference Grounds THE RIGHT STUFF: The Habit, Heart and

Nov. 27th, 2023

My choice of blogging today, is what my body is doing naturally, in this phase of living, preparing well-ahead for death, as what feels like being an elder. I cannot believe I have arrived here! As you know by now, the primary pulses in life have been healing and from this wounded healer huakaʻi (journey/adventure) has blossomed many sweet little trajectories. 

The adventures abroad to take in learning and discovery, first to Paris, then Switzerland, and places with my beloved for holiday beginning in the 90s, Tahiti, Morea, Maupiti, Costa Rica, Italy, Mexico, the Pae ʻāina.

Then to the places of adventure in my "playfreshional/professional" career as a 99% class boutique artist: Connecticut, Massachusetts, the many buroughs of NYC, towns and cities in CA from Los Angeles to Santa Cruz, abroad first to Istanbul, then to Slovenia, Austria, back to France, and I would have ventured further and deeper had the means been there, but alas, my body asked me to stop, at 59.5 years of age, and I listened, and shifted.

I have always loved adventuring by way of using my brain, researching, and one of the gigs I had for a period of around five years, was in the field of ombudsing, before I did the silly thing and allowed myself to be manipulated perhaps by a well-meaning friend to "blow the whistle" on my colleagues. She told me that the Executive Vice Chancellor, when hearing stories from her about what I was putting up with, he wanted me to come forward and blow the whistle. I obeyed blindly, foolishly, ignorantly, and stupidly, but bravely, relabelling this journey, as brave and bold and perhaps an action for the women who had worked before me in this office.

Once I was trained, I became largely the only one in the office, and I was not able to cope with the work load solo. I became bitter and judgemental and resentful when a fellow worker went off to Paris for a month, with no vacation left, and was paid for the work. I was, obviously, still learning and growing and healing, and did not hold the ability to simply walk away, and the act of blowing the whistle, yes, it brought upon the expected retaliation that comes with whistleblowers.

When I went to HR, with my list of examples of what I was experiencing as a whistleblower, along with the laws and rules of regulations that confirmed I was indeed experiencing whistleblowing, the woman with an italian name for butterfly, Farfalla, she looked at me insidiously with something I now label as a hard core "mind "F", and told me in a sickening sweet fake voice with a twisted smile. Oh, this isnʻt retaliation, and refused to consider my perspective, and that, I ignored the fact that I was indeed in a volatile situation in need of support.

Clients visiting the office, when the lead ombuds returned after the whistle was blown, began to go the offices of the Chancellor and Vice Chancellor and express their concern for my safety, but still, nothing was done.

My Hawaiian father, with all of his own wounds and shortcomings did his very best, and taught his children to stand up for what was right. However, he never explained the consequences, and I didnʻt understand the pain of how standing up for what is right, as he had done for a black co-worker, how this could result in an end to oneʻs career.

My end came, when, after receiving no support from H.R., or the Chancellorʻs office, nor the Vice Chancellorʻs office, I boldly took the matter into my own hands. When the abuse started up again, I spoke directly to the senior Ombudsman, and demanded that he stop hurting me in the way he was hurting me. This man, who undoubtedly felt a great deal of betrayal, and I did, foolishly, betray this man, wanting the boys to come back to work, and I really regret it now, and ask him through the veil of wherever he has gone, to forgive me for my foolishness, this man, in a great fury weilded his door as a weapon.

I stood there in shock, in the doorway, with a massive office door mashed against my body. Again and again the door would open a bit toward him, then with the weight of his angry body it would bang against my body, repeatedly, until somehow I was out of its way.

I remember little after that, other than stumbling next door, in shock, and tears, and attempted to communicate what had just happened. 

The campus police came, the office was shut down, and made to look like it would never re-open, so of course, I would have no opportunity to ever return as a "snitch" and I had at moving forward. A friend, who had gone to battle with HR, and sued, and had heart surgery that was paid for by the University, advised against filing a lawsuit, as did a retired judge, a friend of the family. He quietly confided in my husband, they will tear her apart. 

Indeed, when I did go into HR, with my union representatives, I went into shock once again. It felt as if I was being prepared for war, when the union representatives told me what tactics HR would use. I couldnʻt believe this. Isnʻt this supposed to be a civilized society. Where is the human in HR, human resources. Oh, yeah, I forgot, to be human means to also hold the capacity for unimaginable cruelty, as well as for extraordinary kindness, and alot of other textures in the mix.

I reached out to other Ombudsman and was surprised, how the manner in which they lined up.

I experienced being ostracized and shunned by men in the field, who had once been friends of mine, while a few women quietly came forward and shared that the woman ombuds who was my predecessor, she had experienced the exact same dynamics, but had not stepped forward, but rather, became celebrated by the Senior Ombuds. 

One positive thing came out of it, while in the office, I had at the research thing my body loves and digested all of the literature, including a collection gathered by a mentor, and then had a creative reaction and began to devise research studies and began to write about my understanding and observations from a fresh perspective.

Many years later, over a cup of coffee at where I could find this mentor hanging out, Stanley V. Anderson confided that my budding work as an Ombuds scholar had inspired him to return to his writing and research, and he would go on to publish another book, and inscribe it for me.

I learned after that, to hold my tongue, and to never speak ill of an employer, or to bring up any damaging or poor behavior, or talk about personal things, and settled into a job that matched my confidence level, in another setting, that had its own toxic tones. 

I became a humble receptionist.

The office manager, who replaced the office manager who hired me, when she looked at my resume, asked me, what in the hell are you doing here? 

I told her, I need a job.

A job with access to health insurance so I could access care for managing the PTSD symptoms, a job that I could, at this very late age begin to save for retirment, a job that could support the deeper calling to Laka, the goddess of hula, and to embrace the little girlʻs love for dance.

Had then been satisfied as a little girl, and had I not experienced transgenerational harm, including nuances associated with the historical wounds of the Hawaiian genocide, then perhaps, my creativity would have found its niche in research, and academia.

One thing this near five year stint taught me, about Academia, witnessing the troubles that go with hierarchy, and hearing the issues individuals brought to the office, while there are pockets of functional departments, for the most part, it seemed like a pretty toxic envirnonment where the use of the ego aspect of being human, was harnessed in a really damaging way.

If anything, it taught me to harness my own ego in a way that it did not harm others, but an intention to be of support to others.

Being booted out of the field of Ombudsmanship so rudely, brought on by my own foolishness and ignorance in relation to the act of whistleblowing, I found myself back in my passion, dancing, for the love of ombudsing had the dance maker anxiously doing plies in the basketball court at lunch time along with her yoga flow, and rehearsing her dances in this space, and making very slow progress with her dreams of SonneBlauma, growing a boutique dance company in a very small village to an international status, something never done before by a community company in her town.

It did manifest.

As I prepare for "changing the channel", the great return of the physical body to the graciousness of mother earth, not sure if I would prefer cremation, or planted in a pod with an oak tree seedling, or placed in the mountains for the vultures to pick clean, I realize, I would like to honor this short stint as an ombudsman and collate all of my writings into one book somehow.

I dedicate to Stanley V. Anderson, my mentor, and I dedicate it to all whistleblowers.

If you are considering blowing the whistle, from lived experience, I would say, walk away, it isnʻt worth it.

The Papers that Remember that Lovely Leg of This Life Odyssey

Is Ombudsing Like Mediation?

A paper that I was invited to resubmit to the Harvard Law Negotiatioin Journal, in a shorter form, which I did not do, after losing my employment as a consequence of being a whistleblower. I also couldnʻt figure out how to shorten it to a 2 page length from 20 some pages. It was beyond my capabilities at that time.

Microsoft Word - IsOmbudsingLikeMediatonByMisaKelly.pdf

Reflections of a Budding Ombuds, submitted and accepted to "The Journal"

Initial impressions of the field.

Reflections of a Budding Ombuds_The-Journal-2002.pdf

The Taste of Conversation

an Oral History project I launched, with one transcript transcribed and published, and the other, of Don Hartsock I believe, lost in time, with the video perhaps in some obscure ombuds library. Below, the manuscript submitted, and the published version below.

Microsoft Word - SVATranscript(1).pdf
The Taste of Conversation- A dialog between Stanley V. Anderson_CACAUCUS_Journal_2005.pdf

Paper Published in the Conflict Management in Higher Education Report

This went hand in hand with my case study research, conducting research about who exactly ombuds are, their backgrounds, by asking curious questions and compiling the answers. The published form is the short form, and if I remember correctly, I shared the longer form with peers at a conference, which I helped organize. Helped me with dance production this experience did! The longer version is below the short version.

Microsoft Word - OP 2002 PRESENTATION(1).pdf

The Case Study Project

Arose out of the observation that practitioners learned from case studies, and gathering case studies in interest of educating practitioners. Prepared as a conference presentation.

Microsoft Word - MisaKelly2002CaseStudyProjectPresentation(1).pdf

Defining the Campus Ombuds Process

This seemed missing in the literature, so I wrote up, what seemed missing, as a point of depature for discussion amongst ombuds.

Microsoft Word - OmbudsProcess2006.pdf

My resume at that time, I think it includes the nice things the ombuds first wrote about me.

Microsoft Word - MisaKellyResume2006January.pdf

The Ombudsmanʻs Reading and Resource Room

The thought to, at that time, make it easier for Ombuds to locate information by collating existing resources. This was published on a website I created called the Ombudsmanʻs Circle.

Microsoft Word - Misa Kelly_s Ombudsman_s Reading _ Resource Room.pdf
Misa Kelly - The Parallel Socio Cultural Evolution of Ombudsing.doc

Defining a Basic Ombuds Model

In this project, I came up with a suggestion, after studying the different forms of ombudsing, of deepening into the studies by defining what they all shared in common, and from their, conducting further research to evaluate how the Ombuds model expresses in different institutional forms.

Microsoft Word - MisaKellyBasicOmbudsModel.pdf
Microsoft Word - MisaKellyNuts_BoltsApplication.pdf

Cal Caucus Presentation

A package I created for a presentation for the 2003 Cal Caucus Conference. Wow, this was like 20 years ago! I am ancient history now!

Microsoft Word - MisaKelly2003CalCaucusPresentation(1).pdf