Associate Professor Michelle Fanucchi, Ph.D., will officially begin her role as UAB’s first faculty ombuds — an independent, confidential and impartial resource for faculty — Sept.1.
“I look forward to serving in this new role and helping faculty members better understand the university’s processes, resources available to them and how those resources can help,” Fanucchi said. “I expect there will be times when people just want to come in and talk about issues. I can help them navigate the system, explore options as well as help them make connections.”
Fanucchi, a member of the International Ombudsman Association, has completed formal, comprehensive training in the foundations of organizational ombudsman practice, mediation and conflict resolution.
“Not all universities have an ombudsperson, and this will be a wonderful resource,” said Chair of the Faculty Alecia Gross, Ph.D. “Faculty will have a place to talk in confidence about issues or concerns as well as receive information.”
The ombuds is independent of existing administrative structures and for administrative and budgeting purposes reports directly to Office of the Provost.
“I appreciate Dr. Fanucchi’s willingness to take on this important role,” said Provost Linda Lucas. “Her academic experience and the respect she has garnered from her peers will help establish the office as a neutral resource for faculty members to receive information, support and guidance.”
Before accepting the new position, Fanucchi directed the Pathobiology & Molecular Medicine Theme in the Graduate Biomedical Sciences doctoral program and chaired the Department of Environmental Health Sciences within Public Health for five years. She joined UAB in 2007.