Rosaria Haugland was born in Milano, Italy. She received her Doctorate in Biology from the University of Milan and her Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Syracuse University in New York. She is the co-founder and former Vice President of Molecular Probes, Inc. (Eugene OR., 1975 – 2003) and President of The Rosaria P. Haugland Foundation (2003 – present). The foundation is dedicated to supporting women and youth, education, and the arts. Rosaria is also a founder and board member of Ophelia's Place, an organization dedicated to empowering teenage girls to make better life decisions. In 2013, Dr. Haugland received the University of Oregon Distinguished Service Award.