Woman in Leadership: Anna Gybina

By KBJR News 1

November 5, 2010 Updated Nov 5, 2010 at 8:16 AM CDT

Anna Gybina didn't have your average childhood.

She was born in Moscow, Russia, but when her father became involved in a Chemistry exchange program with UMD, Anna, who was only ten, moved with her family to Duluth.

"It was very exciting and very scary at the same time. I didn't speak a lick of English," says Anna.

Anna followed in her father's footsteps receiving an undergrad in both chemistry and biochemistry.

She then moved on to graduate school to pursue a PhD in biochemistry.

But it wasn't just the classroom where Anna was spending her time.

As she also got married and had a little boy.

"I think that it fits very well with an average family life. There's always work and there's always something to do," says Anna.

Anna has spent countless hours volunteering.

She commonly translates for Russian visitors to Duluth but it was her volunteer work in pediatrics that inspired her to make a career change.

"To feel the connection with patients especially to children and to feel like you're making a difference. I think that was a deciding factor for me to pursue medical school," says Anna.

To help Anna pursue her goal to become a doctor, she applied for and received a Dr. Nancy I. English Memorial Foundation Scholarship.

Like Anna, Dr. English studied medicine later in life, changing from social work to Family practice.

Also like Anna, she was dedicated to both her family and the welfare of her patients.

"She truly is an inspiration to me. She was a woman that not only surmounted the challenges of medical school but she did it with a family and she didn't just surmount them she excelled," says Anna.

"When we found out that Anna is going to be the recipient of our endowed scholarship we were all really nervous and excited to meet her and she just blew us away. She was more than what we were looking for in terms of the first recipient of our scholarship," says Dr. English's daughter Hilary Crook.

At this point, Anna is focusing on her family and looking towards the future where she can begin serving the Northland as a practicing physician.

"To become the best physician that I can possibly be because I think that is the best way that I can contribute to my community and my other goal is to continue being the best mom that I can be," says Anna.