Sonoma State University’s School of Business and Economics has named Susan Flannery Adams and Tim Wallace Executives-in-Residence in Human Resources (HR) and Wine Business, respectively.
Adams is lecturer in the School of Business and Economics and coordinator of the Human Resource Management Certificate program at SSU. Wallace is former owner and President of Benziger Family Winery. The new advisory and development positions are intended to support existing staff and leadership in the growth of programs and services, and strengthen community engagement across student, alumni, local business, and other stakeholder groups.
“Susan and Tim offer decades of complex executive leadership experience that will inform and advance our mission to provide transformational learning experiences to our young people, and shape best business practices in the North Bay and beyond,” says William Silver, dean of the School of Business and Economics. “We expect to benefit from their perspective and expertise on multiple aspects of our operation, from curriculum development to alumni engagement to case research and more.”
Adams has 18 years of HR experience in both nonprofit and corporate environments, with specific expertise in evaluating, designing and implementing HR systems and programs. She currently teaches HR management courses in the undergraduate, Master’s-level and professional development programs at SSU. Previously, she was head of HR at PNI Sensor Corporation in Santa Rosa, and held senior positions at international consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, and Chicago-based senior housing and healthcare provider United Methodist Homes and Services. She has a MA in human resources and organization development from the University of San Francisco, and holds certifications from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and HR Certification Institute.
“As the concept of career evolves into a lifetime focus, I hope to leverage my experience to continue to build our community and provide mutual benefit to businesses, alumni, and current and future students,” says Adams. “My focus as Executive-in-Residence is to work collaboratively with University Career Services and all stakeholders to support the growth and development of SBE’s Career Center programs and services.”
Wallace has served for the past 22 years as CEO of Benziger Family Winery, an award-winning wine producer known for its leadership in sustainability practices. His executive management experience organizing seven family owners and 75 full-time employees in all phases of business operations are expected to significantly enhance wine business education and academic program offerings at Sonoma State. He is currently or previously a board member of California Wine Institute, Sonoma Valley Education Foundation, Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance, Sonoma Valley Film Society, and Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau, among other organizations. He has an MBA from Harvard Business School.
“I’m fulfilling a dream that I’ve harbored for some time, which is to give back in a meaningful way to an industry that has enthralled and enriched me for almost three decades,” says Wallace. “The time has come for me to reorient my professional growth from one that has historically focused on success to one that now focuses more squarely on significance. In so doing, I hope to assist others on their journey to success. The Wine Business Institute is a wine industry gem that is well on its way to becoming the world’s most significant contributor to wine business education and research. I’m committed to furthering that distinction in partnership with the students, faculty, and administration of the School of Business and Economics.”