Ann Bancroft

Ann Bancroft

Ann Bancroft, Adventurer. She has achieved several remarkable firsts in challenging expeditions to Antarctica and the Arctic. 

Having struggled with dyslexia as a child, "I really did not like school much. I wanted to but it was so hard and agonizing. I did however have teachers who really tried to change that reality. I think schools are changing the way in which they teach kids with learning differences. We are experimental learners. I was taken out of art and music to be tutored. Those are places where kids like me can really learn differently. Trying to meet the challenges of each kid to learn as they can. Class size does not help this much. Kenya was pivotal for our whole family. We refer to it all the time. For me, it was watching my parents take a risk in taking us all and not knowing all the answers. Discovering. Also understanding that there is a work outside of our neighborhood and state.” 

Ann is the first woman to reach the North Pole by foot and sled alone, the first woman to cross both polar ice caps and reach the North and South Poles, and the first woman to ski across Greenland. She also led the first all-female expedition to cross to the South Pole and joined with Liv Arnesen from Norway to become the first women to ski across Antarctica. 

"Getting ready for an expedition varies a bit depending upon what you are going to be doing and where. In winter in Minnesota, I ski, run and lift weights. In warmer months, run, bike, kayak etc. For Antarctica pulling sleds, I pulled three tires on gravel roads for 4 hours at a time to mimic the sled pulling we would be doing for 8-14 hours a day for 67 to 97 days.”

"Do your homework. If you want to explore, know why you want to go there and read and talk to everyone who’s been… learning is a constant."

InspirationMatters.org, Photograph via MSP Mag

Rebecca Ramirez

Rebecca Ramirez

Sarah Leary

Sarah Leary