Accolades for Faculty Research Highlight Fall Semester 2016

Wine Business Scholars Earn Prestigious Emerald Literati Award for Excellence
January 3, 2017

Rohnert Park, California - The School of Business and Economics (SBE) at Sonoma State University (SSU) today announced that Drs. Tom Atkin, Janeen Olsen, Steven Cuellar, and Liz Thach, Professors of Wine Business, received the prestigious Emerald Literati Network Awards for Excellence for their research study, "Variety Seeking by Wine Consumers in the Southern States of the U.S."

The consumer behavior study is based on data from an online survey of 401 U.S. wine enthusiasts to determine if there are differences in their personal characteristics, values, and relationship with wine. Results of the study demonstrate that younger consumers identify as having wine knowledge and involvement, and are more likely to seek a variety of wine, consume more wine, and pay significantly higher prices than middle-aged and older consumers.

The research was originally published in the International Journal of Wine Business Research and provides insight for wine companies attempting to introduce new products and build brand loyalty among variety-seeking consumers, wines from different countries, and various price tiers.

"Our faculty continue to not only help shape best practices in business, industry, and government, but also bring attention and reputation to the quality of academic and life experiences available here," Dr. William Silver, Dean of School of Business and Economics at Sonoma State University said.

Other recognition for faculty research and publications include the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) Book Award, earned by Dr. Liz Thach for her book, Successful Social Media and Ecommerce Strategies in the Wine Industry

Dr. Kathryn Chang, Professor of Accounting, accepted the 2016 "Best Paper Award" from the American Accounting Association for her study, "The Impact of Outsourcing on Hospital Performance," an investigation of hospital outsourcing as a strategy to manage costs and improve performance and quality.

Dr. Armand Gilinsky, Jr., Korbel Professor, was named a North American Case Research Association (NACRA) fellow, in recognition of outstanding long-time service to the NACRA organization. 

Dr. Robert Girling was awarded J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship with a five-year specialist tenure from the Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, and J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. Over the course of his tenure, Dr. Girling will be eligible to be matched with incoming project requests from overseas academic institutions.

For more information regarding faculty research in the School of Business and Economics, or for information regarding certificates and degrees, please contact (707) 664-2377, email, or visit