Long-time Woman's executive a trailblazer in healthcare finance, influential community leader
BATON ROUGE, La. -- Following 31 years of quietly and masterfully guiding projects that have helped the women and infants of Baton Rouge and beyond, Stephanie Anderson, Woman’s Hospital Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer, has announced that she will retire later this year. Anderson’s incredible career at Woman’s spans most of the hospital’s major expansions and financial changes that, over the years, positioned it to become a powerhouse in women’s care.
“Few people are well-respected and well-loved at their organizations the way Stephanie Anderson is at Woman’s Hospital,” said Paul Cleckner, interim president and CEO of Woman’s Hospital. “She is in the fabric of many of the hospital’s successes, and her drive for excellence has provided us the support to improve health outcomes for thousands of women and infants in our community.”
Anderson is a trailblazer for women in finance, starting in the field while it was male-dominated, and she’s left her mark. Her mantra was to always work hard and let your actions speak for themselves. She’s well-known for her strong negotiations in the insurance industry which built the base of Woman’s financial strength for decades. Anderson was at the forefront of creating a structured managed care function when HMOs/PPOs first began. She also oversaw the $319.5 million sale of tax-exempt bonds that financed construction of the hospital’s current campus.
“While my role has largely been focused on managing the financial aspects of running the hospital, it’s been so much bigger than that,” Anderson said. “I’m part of a team that works every day to improve the health of women and infants in this community. And that’s what I love most about my job; it’s an opportunity to be one small piece of the puzzle that improves the health of our community.”
Anderson’s support of Woman’s mission over the past three decades has significantly improved the lives of thousands. Under her leadership, the hospital began an HIV transmission prevention program with the goal of protecting newborns from contracting the disease from their mothers. An HIV-positive baby has not been born to a mother enrolled in that program since its inception in 2005. She also has been responsible for several programs to secure additional funding for caring for under-insured and under-represented members of our community including implementing the LINCAA program and establishing a population health initiative to improve the health of new moms at Woman’s.
The Woman’s Center for Wellness was also Anderson’s vision. The 59,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility, at the corner of Bluebonnet Boulevard and Jefferson Highway, offers fitness programs, physical and occupational therapy, medically supervised exercise, audiology services and various other services specific to helping women with cancer manage the effects of treatment.
A mother to three boys, all of whom were born at Woman’s, Anderson has been dedicated to improving the lives of children by supporting Our Lady of Mercy Catholic School and Catholic High School programs for decades, and serving as a mentor for high school students. She was also actively involved in many community organizations that serve children, including McMains Children’s Developmental Center and Big Buddy Program. She has been recognized as Outstanding CPA in Business and Industry (Society of Louisiana Certified Public Accountants, 2016); Esprit de Femme award winner (LSU Women’s Center, 2013); and a Most Influential Women in Business (Baton Rouge Business Report, 2011).
A Lafayette-native, Anderson is a two-time LSU graduate and a fixture in the Baton Rouge business community for her support. A graduate of the Leadership Louisiana and Leadership Greater Baton Rouge programs, she served on the boards of Capital Area United Way and the American Heart Association at both the local and national level, serving as the 2018-2019 President of the Baton Rouge chapter and Chair of the 2020 Go Red for Women event.