Kristin Bergmann attended Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota where she majored in Geology with an Environmental and Technological Studies Concentration. There she fell in love with field work spending two summers researching the hydrologic changes associated with sagebrush expansion in the southern Sierra Nevada. Prior to graduate school, Kristin worked for the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin and then taught middle school science at the Pennington School in New Jersey. Kristin pursued her doctorate at Caltech in Pasadena, California with John Grotzinger, John Eiler and Woody Fischer using field and lab work to study the environmental conditions surrounding animal evolution in the Ediacaran, Cambrian and Ordovician. After graduating, she joined the Harvard Society of Fellows as a junior fellow and worked with Andy Knoll on early eukaryotic evolution. She joined the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the summer of 2015. In 2018 Bergmann was awarded a Packard Fellowship from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.