Renowned wine climatologist Greg Jones is leaving Southern Oregon University for the Willamette Valley, where he will head Linfield College's wine education program.

Jones joined SOU a decade ago and has directed the Division of Business, Communication and the Environment since 2014.

Jones is a research climatologist who focuses on how soil, topography and climate influence wine production. He studies in particular the effect climate changes have on vine growth, fruit production and the resulting wine quality. He regularly conducts research for the wine industry in Oregon and has given hundreds of presentations on climate and wine regionally, nationally and internationally. He was a contributing author to the 2008 Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Report.

He will start at Linfield, located in McMinnville, on Aug. 15, succeeding Ellen Brittan, founding director of wine education at Linfield, who is returning to Brittan Vineyards, in McMinnville, full-time.

Jones was named one of the Top 50 Wine Industry Leaders by Wine Business Monthly in 2016, one of the 100 most influential people in the U.S. wine industry in 2012 and 2013 by intowine.com, and the Oregon Wine Press Wine Person of the Year for 2009. Recently, he became the 10th American to be named an Infanção (nobleman) by the Confraria do Vinho do Porto, a wine society, for his work with the Portuguese wine industry.

Linfield was the first college in the country to offer an interdisciplinary liberal arts degree in wine studies. The private college, which has an undergraduate enrollment of about 1,700, also hosts the International Pinot Noir Celebration each summer.