COLUMBUS - A Columbus Community Hospital surgical technologist was recently recognized as the best in the state at her position.

CCH announced Monday that Kelly Wendt has been named the 2019 Surgical Technologist of the Year for the state of Nebraska. The award is given by the Nebraska State Assembly of the Association of Surgical Technologists.

Wendt is a certified surgical technologist, and assists before, during, and after surgical operations by preparing operating rooms, arranging equipment, and acting as an integral member of the surgical team. Wendt has been serving as a surgical technologist with CCH since April 2015, and began working at CCH in 2012 as a sign language interpreter before deciding to go back to school to study for her current position.

“We were fortunate to have her here for clinical rotations and saw her potential from the beginning,” said Sue Hrnicek, MSN, CNOR, RN, director of Surgical Services at CCH. “We actually hired her full time while she was still a student so that we would not lose her to another facility.”

Wendt is a member of the Association of Surgical Technologists.