NYC Fintech Women announced its second annual, 50 Inspiring Fintech Females awards. There were more than 400 nominations for recognition in five different categories. Mobile Payments Today interviewed a few of the winners to get their reaction to being selected and get their advice for women in the industry moving forward.
The organization known as NYC Fintech Women is one of the largest organizations in the U.S. and brings together more than 6000 women in financial technology to share ideas and information.
This month the organization announced its second annual, 50 Inspiring Fintech Females awards. There were several women recognized in each of the five categories: Founders, Leaders, Money Movers, Network Builders and Product Builders.
Karen Rios, co-founder and CEO of Lifesaver, was a recipient in the Founder award category. The organization describes a founder as, “…a tenacious female founder in a male-dominated industry who has an entrepreneurial spirit using her platform to build diverse teams and mentor other women.”
Rios was honored to be part of those recognized in the category. “This award is really a recognition of the important problem our team at Lifesaver is solving,” Rios said. Her advice to female leaders was to focus on community.
“Build your community. Go out of your way to help people, be honest and kind. You will be shocked how quickly people will help. Entrepreneurship is a hard, often lonely journey and every successful entrepreneur in fintech has a tribe behind them.”
The Money Maker award winners are women who “…are actively investing and supporting diverse fintech founders,
challenging the current status quo within venture capital and shifting the distribution of wealth and opportunity of all women.”
Addie Lerner, founder and managing partner at Avid Ventures, was selected this year as one of the Money Maker award winners. “2020 is an incredibly exciting year for women in fintech, many of whom are at the forefront of today’s most transformative companies in the space. Avid was built by a team of ambitious women, and, to date, we’ve invested in a handful of diverse, female founders leading fintech companies, overall, 60% of our portfolio companies are led by women founders.”
Lerner’s advice to women in this industry? “Build a strong network and surround yourself with like-minded women who want to support each other and drive further diversity in this industry. From the outside this space can potentially seem daunting, so don’t be afraid to speak up and ask questions. This community — and the women who are a part of it — are incredibly welcoming and encouraging.”
Scarlett Sieber, the managing director of Chief Strategy & amp; Innovation Officer for
CCG Catalyst Consulting was selected as one of this year’s winners for the leader award. The organization describes a leader as a woman who, “…drives change within her organization all the while championing equity and the inclusion of women.”
“The path is never an easy one and to be recognized proves that the hustle and the grit are worth it,” Sieber said. “While we still have a long way to go, the impact that women have had on the fintech/finance world is tremendous and will only increase from here.”
Remember your story
A product builder award winner, “…is an innovative problem solver committed to building products that power decisions made in Fintech and an advocate for increased representation.”
Deepa Sathaye, a software engineer for Alloy, and a winner in this category, offers this advice to women: be humble.
“In almost any role. you get stuck in the weeds at times, I certainly do as a software engineer at a startup. Being recognized outside my organization is humbling among other things. Winning this award is a responsibility to be more visible to inspire and sponsor others around me. Winning is also motivation to continue my work in fintech by knowing it matters. My advice to women in this industry is be humble and listen to the stories and advice from others, but always remember your story and follow your ‘why'”.
Network builders are “…an industry powerhouse who leverages her network
to drive connections across the fintech community to foster a more inclusive ecosystem, enriching experiences and ultimately promoting better innovation.”
One of the winners in this category is Cammila Garcia, vice counsel, Fintech & Professional Services, Department for International Trade, British Consulate-General, New York.
“This award is an incredible honor as it has featured many influential women who are transforming financial services and are leading the way in all things fintech. I recognize this award as both an achievement and a call to action to continue supporting other women to have increased exposure, opportunities and access to build their networks.”