Dr. Armand Gilinsky has been named the second F. Korbel & Bros. Professor of Wine Business at Sonoma State University by the Wine Business Institute Board of Directors.
The professorship, which was established in 2011 and held for the first three years by Dr. Liz Thach, is supported by Korbel Champagne Cellars and its president and owner Gary Heck to cultivate faculty research and projects that advance the wine industry and its leaders.
"I am humbled," said Gilinsky, author of more than 40 published case studies and articles relating to the wine industry. "It is incredibly generous, yet so appropriate, for Gary Heck to lend Korbel's name and funding to this professorship that gives faculty time to develop projects that help the wine industry, as well as those who seek careers in it."
Making the announcement, Dr. William Silver, dean of the School of Business and Economics, pointed to Gilinsky's successful and relevant research, like his and Professor Sandra Newton's award-winning case study "NakedWines.com: The Sudoku Approach" that proposes crowd-funding as a solution to banks' increasing reluctance to lend to unknown start-ups, that make Gilinsky such a worthy choice.
"Armand's accomplishments have always impressed me. He involves students in meaningful work and his studies really contribute to wine businesses," said Heck. "Korbel is pleased to support Dr. Gilinsky's ongoing efforts to foster innovation in the industry and in the classroom."
Gilinsky identified three themes to focus on throughout the next three years, stating that understanding emergent business models regarding sustainability will be "front and center." He plans to help Sonoma County become the nation's first 100 percent sustainable wine region, a goal set in January by the Sonoma County Winegrowers.
Gilinsky's other two research goals include sharing best practices and tools for wine business education by creating a wine business case study book, and examining how strategy and leadership in the wine industry are changing. He plans to involve students as much as he can in all of his investigations and explorations of the industry so that he can teach them how to "make serendipity happen to advance their careers."
"Students will learn the recipes for success and 'get under the hood' of a business by participating in these projects," said Gilinsky. "It provides opportunities to explore the industry, put something impactful on their resumes, and point to their education at Sonoma State with pride."