We created this award to honor Mignon Waterman’s life and legacy. Mignon was one of our founding trustees and served as board secretary from 2013 to 2017. Each year, we use this award to highlight an individual who, like Mignon, has made notable contributions to Montana’s behavioral health system
This year, it is our honor to recognize Dr. Jamie G. Straub, DO, FACOG, as the 2021 Mignon Waterman Award recipient.
With this award, we are recognizing her leadership, partnership building, and innovative contributions to improving Montana’s behavioral health system.
Providence Montana Health Foundation nominated Dr. Straub and the $10,000 award will benefit Providence St. Joseph Medical Center.
“We are thrilled that the Montana Healthcare Foundation selected Dr. Straub for this prestigious and meaningful award, aware of Mignon Waterman’s tireless efforts to improve the lives of Montanans with the complex systems of behavioral health. Dr. Straub’s collaborative, innovative, and compassionate efforts to support mothers and families struggling with substance abuse will continue to create a positive cultural ripple effect across generations of Montanans. Dr. Straub and her team continue Mignon’s beautiful legacy of serving our most vulnerable Montanans.”
– Fran M. Albrecht, Chief Philanthropy Officer, Providence Montana Health Foundation
Dr. Straub was born and raised in Bozeman and received her undergraduate degree from Montana State University. She received her medical degree from Kansas City University of Medicine & Biosciences and completed her education at the University of Missouri Kansas City.
In 2010, Dr. Straub returned to Montana and began working for Providence St. Joseph Medical Center (SJMC) as a board-certified OB/GYN Staff Physician. Located in Polson, Providence SJMC is a 22-bed critical access hospital that lies within the boundaries of the Flathead Indian Reservation and serves the residents of Lake County.
As a physician, Dr. Straub provides a full spectrum of women’s health care and works with families to deliver nearly 200 babies each year. In addition to seeing patients, Dr. Straub also serves as the hospital’s quality director, overseeing medical surgical quality improvement, and is a SAFE (Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner) provider, helping implement a Sexual Assault Task Force for the hospital and training nurses to work alongside her.
In 2015, Dr. Straub was a founding member of the executive committee that established the Wrapped in Hope project.
At a time when pregnant and postpartum women in Montana had few options for substance use disorder treatment, Wrapped in Hope created an innovative model that provided prompt, supportive behavioral health services integrated into prenatal and postpartum care. Dr. Straub served as one of three physician leads for the project and facilitated public and provider education within Providence SJMC’s service area.
Lessons from Wrapped in Hope informed the Montana Healthcare Foundation’s creation of The Meadowlark Initiative®, in partnership with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services. The Meadowlark Initiative has brought the innovative core elements from Wrapped in Hope to the entire state by offering routine screening and treatment for substance use disorders as part of prenatal and postpartum care. This new standard of pregnancy care is now active in 15 clinical sites with new practices joining each year.
“Dr. Straub brought attention to the critical lack of treatment options for mothers and families with behavioral health issues. The collaborative program she helped pilot played a crucial role in our development of The Meadowlark Initiative, which is making screening and prompt access to behavioral health treatment a routine part of prenatal care in Montana.”
– Dr. Aaron Wernham, CEO, Montana Healthcare Foundation
Dr. Straub is an outspoken advocate for incorporating evidence-based behavioral health services for women within medical settings. Her innovative approach has brought to the forefront critical health issues, and her leadership in Lake County helped spark a statewide transformation that makes effective care for substance use disorders and mental illness a routine part of prenatal care services around Montana.
Dr. Straub’s commitment, innovation, and dedication to improving behavioral health for mothers and families embody the spirit of the Mignon Waterman award.
“Mignon Waterman was such an inspirational and influential woman in Montana, and I am honored to be this year’s recipient of the Mignon Waterman Award. It has been exciting to see the growth and changes that have come about in the last six years with regards to maternal substance abuse and the Meadowlark Initiative in Montana. I am passionate about women’s health care and believe there is still more support that is needed for maternal behavioral health. I am proud of my contributions thus far and I will continue to address the needs of women in my community in an innovative and compassionate way. Providing this care to one of our most vulnerable populations has the potential to impact generations of Montanans.”
– Dr. Jamie G. Straub, DO, FACOG, Obstetrics/Gynecology, Quality Chair, St. Joseph Medical Center