Three Forks, Montana, treasured nationally as the headwaters of the Missouri River, is also the hometown of an even greater gem, Ann Bertagnolli. Bertagnolli grew up in the small Montana town when the area’s only physician, also her father, still made house calls. From Three Forks, Bertagnolli’s path flowed, first to Carroll College as an undergraduate, then to UNLV for a master’s degree and then eastward to The Ohio State University for a doctorate in literature. Bertagnolli eventually returned to the Treasure State, serving as a professor and department chair at Carroll College, then later to Montana State University, where she quickly established herself as the heart and soul of the Montana INBRE Network. For the past 17 years, Bertagnolli has led a program that has distributed over $60 million in biomedical research funds throughout Montana. Under her leadership, the Montana INBRE Network has become the backbone of a statewide biomedical research network that now involves 15 academic institutions, including seven tribal colleges. Bertagnolli has coordinated over 200 faculty research projects and helped facilitate over 2,000 student research projects across Montana, including eight Native American graduate fellowships.

As the oldest of seven children, Ann Bertagnolli acclimated to leadership roles early and often, and this continues in her role today with the Montana INBRE Network.

Ann Bertagnolli

Photo: MSU Communications