AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF) –

16 years ago, Andrea Putzier walked through the doors of A-U Health with her sight set on nursing.

But, her path started from a different direction.

“I actually thought that I wanted to go into more Communications and Marketing. Then, at orientation I changed my mind and told my Mom “I think I want to do nursing.” But, I’ve always just had a strong desire to help people and I think that’s what drew me to nursing,” explains Putzier.

Throughout her career, she has worked in various aspects of nursing eventually gaining a Master’s Degree as well as ascending into her current position as the Director of Perioperative Service.

“Perioperative surgery is everything that goes into getting the patient ready for surgery and then after surgery getting your patient recovered. So, for peri-op we are comprised of the adult OR the Children’s Hospital, the digestive health center and of course all the supporting services that go along with that.”

It’s a big job that is being led by a woman with an even bigger heart for helping patients and her staff.

She says, “when I was a nurse at the bedside I loved that patient interaction and interacting at the bedside with the family but as a leader my favorite thing is watching teams come together and provide the best care possible. It’s really super special when you see your teams taking care of each other.”

For Andrea Putzier, the sign over her desk is more than decoration.. it’s a declaration of leadership style.

She says the key is believing in the staff and empowering them.

“So when they come to me with issues they are the first person I ask “what is the solution to the problem?” So, it’s a two way street for sure.”

This leadership style and dedication to helping others through her career are just a couple of reasons why Andrea Putzier is one of WJBF News Channel 6’s Women To Watch.