Patricia “Alex” Robinson ’09, of Seattle, won a prize for best paper at the annual conference of the American Association of Wine Economists, held in Reims, Champagne, France, in June. She presented her honors thesis, “Exchange Rate Pass-Through to U.S. Import Prices. Evidence from the Wine Market,” said Karl Storchmann, associate professor of economics and the editor of “The Journal of Wine Economics.”

Storchmann and Pete Parcells, associate professor of economics, attended the conference with four recent Whitman economics graduates. In addition to Robinson’s presentation, Peter Griffin ’09, of Cupertino, California, presented “Assessing the Value of Geographic Reputation for Sparkling Wines”; and Aaron Lee ’09 and Alex Mitterling 09, both of Seattle, presented “Signaling Wine Quality with Price. An Analysis of Wine Regions in the U.S.,” with Storchmann.

In addition, Storchmann presented “Food Tournaments: NYC 2006-2008,” with colleagues Olivier Gergaud, University of Reims, and Vincenzo Verardi, University of Brussels; and “How can we identify counterfeit wines in auctions?” with Orley Ashenfelter, Princeton University.

With the support of Whitman College, Storchmann created the Journal of Wine Economics in 2006 and formed the American Association of Wine Economists as a companion organization. The journal, which has received rave reviews from wine, food and business writers around the world, features the research of noted international scholars with specialties in the area of the economics of wine. For more information go to


CONTACT: Lenel Parish, Whitman College News Service, (509) 527-5156