Elizabeth “Liz” Thach, Ph.D. is a Professor of Management and Wine Business at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park, California. Her areas of expertise include Wine Business Strategy, Human Resource Management, and Leadership Development. She started teaching as a full-time professor at SSU in the Fall of 2000. In addition to teaching, she currently conducts research and does consulting with multiple wineries and other local businesses. In the Spring of 2011 she was awarded the title of Master of Wine from the Institute of Masters of Wine in London, making her the first female MW on the West Coast and the 7th woman in the US to achieve this honor.
Prior to coming to SSU, Liz worked for 18 years in management and executive positions with Compaq, USWest, Amoco, and Texas Instruments. Her work included global leadership, organizational development and human resource work in more than 15 countries. Today she maintains her connections to the business community with part-time consulting in the wine, telecomm, high tech, and banking industries.
Liz holds a doctorate in Human Resource Development from Texas A&M University (1994); an M.A. in Organizational Communication and Management from Texas Tech University (1987), and a B.A. in English from College of Notre Dame in Belmont, CA (1983). She has published more than 100 articles; 6 book chapters, and 5 wine books.
She is an active member in community organizations, and has held positions with the Board of Directors for WineSpirit, Women for Wine Sense, Petaluma Gap WineGrowers Association, PASCO (Personnel Association of Sonoma County), Napa NCHRA (North Coast Human Resource Association), Sonoma County Wine Library Board and Madrone Audubon. She has also served on planning committees for WineVision, the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium, the International Wine Marketing & Business Symposium, the Wine Industry CPA Conference, and is on the Editorial Board for the International Journal of Wine Business Research. Liz is frequently asked to be a professional wine judge at various wine judging competitions.
Liz is married with one daughter. She lives on Sonoma Mountain where she spends her free time hiking, reading, bird-watching, and tending a hobby vineyard from which she makes wine. She and her husband also enjoy golfing, travel, and cooking together, as well as having friends over for wine-tastings and barbeques.