Crimson Announces Hiring of Ombudsman Kolber

The Harvard Crimson has hired Michael Kolber, a first-year student at Harvard Law School, to serve as its ombudsman, said the paper’s president, Kristina M. Moore ’08.

Kolber, who was previously a reporter for the Sacramento Bee and the city editor of the Yale Daily News, will provide feedback on The Crimson’s coverage and respond to readers’ complaints in a monthly column.

“The goal is that I will mostly be responding to complaints from readers and so hopefully it won’t just be my thoughts on The Crimson,” Kolber said in a phone interview yesterday.

Last year, The Crimson faced controversy over several accusations of plagiarism regarding cartoons and a column it published on its editorial page.

According to Moore, discussion on hiring an ombudsman began last year under the direction of former Crimson President William C. Marra ’07.

Moore, Managing Editor Javier C. Hernandez ’08, and the paper’s executive board interviewed Kolber. She hired him on March 6 and announced his appointment to staff earlier this month.

“He was just really interested and expressed so much enthusiasm for the job,” Moore said.

She added that “having an outside arbiter can be a really good way of relieving some internal tension.”

Kolber will address complaints from readers in his column, but can also be reached directly at ombudsman@thecrimson.com.

He said last night that he was excited to work for The Crimson.

“I’ve always loved newspapers and I’m sort of eager to stay involved however I can,” Kolber said.

—Staff writer Claire M. Guehenno can be reached at guehenno@fas.harvard.