Office of the Ombudsman
The purpose of the Ombudsman is to facilitate and foster improved communication between NOAA staff, industry, academia and the public. This official is also dedicated to removing barriers to reaching common understandings, by serving as a neutral, independent intermediary on acquisition and grants matters.
Resolution of acquisition issues and concerns
Members of client organizations, industry, academia and the public may access the Ombudsman for assistance in resolving concerns they may have involving Acquisition and Grants Office (AGO) policies, decisions or procedures. However, as a general rule, AGO Contracting Officers and Grants Officers must be availed an opportunity to resolve a concern prior to an issue being transferred to the Ombudsman for resolution.
When a client organization, company, academia or the public has a bona fide reason to believe that they will not be treated reasonably, responsibly or objectively by a Contracting Officer or a Grants Officer, they may immediately access the AGO Ombudsman for consideration.
Roles and responsibilities
The Ombudsman serves as a liaison and independent, impartial, intermediary between AGO and client organizations, industry, academia, and the public. He conducts outreach and examines concerns involving AGO policies, decisions and processes. He also supports special initiatives and the Small Business Program.
The Ombudsman consults with AGO Management and NOAA leadership about concerns and issues he becomes aware of, with the intention of helping find improvements to AGO policies, procedures and decisions.