Baylor University Provost David L. Jeffrey has announced the appointment of Dr. Gregory A. Benesh, professor of physics, to the newly created position of University Ombudsman for Faculty.
"I am delighted that Dr. Benesh has agreed to serve in the unique and unprecedented capacity of university ombudsman," Dr. Jeffrey said. "His reputation as a first-rate scholar-teacher and wise counselor qualify him for this new and important assignment. He has the respect of faculty and administrators alike and will serve as a voice for reconciliation and natural justice in the academic community at Baylor."
Dr. Benesh's responsibilities will include providing dispute resolution in faculty-to-faculty and faculty-to-administration relations, offering advice and counsel to faculty whose need for mediation or guidance through normal processes is not being fully realized and sitting as an observer at both Faculty Senate and Council of Deans meetings. He also will submit an annual report to the Faculty Senate, Council of Deans, provost and president that will summarize cases from the previous year and make suggestions concerning faculty/administrative relations and processes.
"I would like to thank Dr. Jeffrey for his initiative in creating the ombudsman position and for the confidence he has placed in me," Dr. Benesh said. "My goal as university ombudsman is to bring resolution and reconciliation to conflicts that naturally arise at any large institution such as Baylor, and to do so in a way that is consistent with Christian charity and our mission as a Christian university. I ask for the support of faculty members and administrators as I seek to fulfill these responsibilities."
Dr. Joe Cox, professor of management and chair of the Faculty Senate, said he is pleased with the appointment. "This is something I've felt Baylor could use for the 26 years I've been here. I think Greg Benesh is a wonderful choice; he'll be respected by all faculty with his track record of activities and successes at Baylor and his personality," Dr. Cox said. "It will be one more venue for people to resolve positively any difficulties they may have with any other faculty or the administration."
A member of the Baylor faculty since 1982, Dr. Benesh received his bachelor's degree in physics from Rice University, earned master's and doctoral degrees in physics from Northwestern University and also completed a master's degree in mathematics while on the physics faculty at Baylor.
In addition, he conducted postdoctoral research at the renowned Cavendish Laboratory at?the University of Cambridge and has served as visiting scholar at the Cavendish Laboratory, the SERC Daresbury Laboratory in England, the University of Nijmegen in the Netherlands and the University of Cardiff in Wales. He also has served as a University Fellow at Northwestern and as a Fellow with the NATO Advanced Study Institute in Ghent, Belgium.