Wine Trade Expert Tri-Cities Professor Dies Suddenly During Winter Vacation

A renowned Tri-Cities professor and wine business expert has passed away.

Byron Marlowe, 43, died suddenly on December 28, according to Washington State University Tri-Cities.

The Fulbright scholar and author was an associate professor of hospitality and wine and beverage business management. He is survived by his wife Tami and their children Adeline, Brynn and Jonathan.

Marlowe led the Professional Certificate Program in Wine Business Management through the WSU Carson College of Business and was responsible for the International Business Management course of the online Master of Business Administration program at Carson College of Business.

He has also led educational offerings for WSU’s newly established Tri-Cities partnership with the Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center.

In a letter to staff, Chancellor Sandra Haynes described Marlowe as “passionate about the regional wine and beer industries, studying and always looking for new and innovative ways to improve the customer experience, to help local businesses to succeed and raise the caliber of beverages developed and sold. both in the Pacific Northwest and overseas.

Haynes said he is also passionate about teaching and guiding the next generation of professionals entering one of the region’s fastest growing industries.

Haynes wrote that the students described Marlowe as an exceptional mentor and the reason they got the job of their dreams.

One of Professor Marlowe’s students said he was instrumental in her decision to go to WSU and became a mentor, teacher and dear friend.

She said many fellow faculty members shared the same sentiment.

Marlowe was named Don Smith Distinguished Professor in 2020.

The honor helps support a member of the institution who embodies Smith’s spirit as an exceptional teacher, strong mentor and accomplished industry professional.

Last spring he traveled to Austria as a Fulbright Fellow, spending four months teaching and researching at IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems in Krems an der Donau, Austria.

The experiment supported Marlowe’s research into identifying best practices for cellar tasting room experiences around the world.

He is also the author of an acclaimed book on the industry, “Wine Sales and Distribution: The Secrets of Building a Consultative Selling Approach,” which was named the best wine book for professionals in the world. United States by the International Gourmand Book Fair in 2020.

Marlowe has also been involved in the Tri-Cities community, supporting such efforts as the Downtown Pasco Development Authority’s Ponte la Mascara Pasco, or Put on the Mask Pasco.

A GoFundMe fundraiser has been set up for her family, bit.ly/3JE7ROY.

Funeral arrangements have not been made public.

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