Our Staff


Susan Pearson
Ombuds Interim Director

Susan has served in a variety of roles at UMass Amherst since 1972, including Associate Provost and Associate Chancellor, working mostly in the areas of academic personnel and collective bargaining. She has written extensively on academic personnel and labor relations and served on the Board of Directors of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and as President of the Academy for Academic Personnel Administration. She joined the Ombuds Office on July 1, 2020.



Martha Patrick, M.Ed., CO-OP®
Associate Ombuds

Martha joined the Ombuds Office in 2010 after serving for a decade as the campus’ Community Relations Director, negotiating community partnership agreements and working to resolve town/gown issues. Previously, she worked as the founding Director of the Rainbow Center at the University of Connecticut, and as a supervisor for a community mental health agency. She holds a B.A. from Smith College and an M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration from UMass Amherst, and has specialized training in mediation, facilitation, conflict coaching, and motivational interviewing.


Erica Avery
Clerical Assistant

Erica provides administrative support to the Ombuds Office, with a background in information technology, health care records management, and office administration.