Meet the Ombudsperson

Ruthy Kohorn Rosenberg, J.D. is the Ombudsperson for Brown University.  Ruthy was the Faculty and Postdoc Ombudsperson since February of 2012, and University Ombudsperson since August 1, 2013.  She came from MIT where she was the Director of Student Mediation and worked with faculty, staff and students to build capacity within the Institute community to deal effectively with conflict. Before her five years at MIT, Ruthy was Assistant Dean, Academic Affairs for the Division of Biology and Medicine at Brown.

Ruthy has over 25 years experience in conflict resolution and management, ombudsmanry, teaching and curriculum design.  She is a Qualified Affiliate Practitioner with the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration and until recently an adjunct professor at Roger Williams University School of Law.   Ruthy is also on the board of  the Community Mediation Center of Rhode Island. 

Ruthy's philosophy about conflict is that it exists  -  it's how we each deal with it that makes the difference.  Conflict allows us to deepen understanding of ourselves, each other and the issues at hand.  It can be creative and constructive.  John Dewey said, "Conflict is the gadfly of thought.  It stirs us to observation and memory.  It instigates to invention.  It shocks out of sheep-like passivity, and sets us at noting and contriving.  Not that it always effects this result; but that conflict is the sine qua non of reflection and ingenuity."

Ruthy is interested in finding ways for individuals and groups  to create environments in which everyone feels they are treated fairly and respectfully, She would like to help people gain the skills and strategies  to shift their thinking about conflict so that they can engage in conflict constructively.

Ruthy’s undergraduate degree is from Smith College.  She has a law degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law and a Certificate in Non Profit Management from Case Western Reserve University.  She is specifically trained in facilitation, divorce mediation, civil rights mediation, USDA mediation, public participation (IAP2) and as an ombuds (IAO).