From Technology Development to College Leadership: A Journey of Problem Solving, Critical Thinking, Innovation and Vision

02/26/2018 - 3:00pm
LEADERSHIP SEMINAR SERIES: Rebecca M. Bergman, President, Gustavus Adolphus College
Communicore, C1-15

President Bergman will first reflect on highlights of her experiences in research and development at Medtronic, including her involvement in the development of the Micra Transcatheter Pacing System, problem-solving experiences related to issues with clinically approved devices, and the importance of technology foresight and strategic planning.  She will then speak about her unexpected change in career and her transition to serve as president at a liberal arts college.  Finally, she will discuss the transferability of leadership from across different organizations and work environments, with a focus on the qualities that she has found to be essential for leadership success.


Rebecca M. Bergman serves as the President of Gustavus Adolphus College, a residential liberal arts college with Swedish and Lutheran heritage located in St. Peter, Minnesota.  During her first three-and-a-half years, President Bergman has focused on the inherent strengths of the Gustavus community, the passion of the faculty and students for teaching and learning, and the commitment of the College to its core values.  She has led the development of a new strategic plan, called Gustavus Acts, which is now in the implementation phase.  President Bergman is a champion of mission-driven organizations, innovation, and the development of future leaders.

Prior to assuming the presidency in July 2014, Ms. Bergman had a 26-year career at Medtronic, Inc., a leading medical technology company.  She most recently served as Vice President, Research, Technology and Therapy Delivery Systems for Medtronic’s Cardiac Rhythm Disease Management business.  Ms. Bergman is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) and a member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE).  Since 2008, she has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Sigma-Aldrich.  In addition, she currently is a member of the Board of Directors of The Bakken Museum.  She previously served on the National Advisory Committee of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) of the NIH, the St. Catherine University Board of Trustees, and the Gustavus Adolphus College Board of Trustees.  Ms. Bergman holds a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University, completed graduate studies in Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the University of Minnesota, and has received honorary doctorate degrees from Drexel University and St. Catherine University. 

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