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A Woman of Influence: Maryanne Morrow Puts her Fintech Experience to Work with Startup

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

During the summer of 1995, Maryanne Morrow became the first woman to scale the Northeast 111 (the then-recognized 113 Northeastern U.S. mountain peaks more than 4,000 feet in height) in a single climbing season.

“It all started when someone told me I couldn’t do it,” she said.

So goes the mentality behind a longtime financial-technology expert who founded 9th Gear Technologies last year. The company, whose name references the nine people Morrow gathered to spell out the company’s mission and the concept of “gearing up” to speed, uses blockchain technology to shrink the time it takes for foreign exchange trading settlements from two days to a matter of minutes.

The company has since grown to 29 employees. More tellingly, five of the company’s seven executives are women.

And while the 52-year-old’s 100-hour-plus workweeks currently prevent her from any hardcore climbing escapades, she does try to get to the Santa Cruz Mountains when she can and has taken up archery as a hobby.

“Aiming at a target helps me concentrate and be deliberate,” she said.

A moment in your career you are most proud of: “Of the seven slots on our executive team, five are held by talented women. I’m most proud of assembling an incredible team of happy people that gets stuff done regardless of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, disability, protected veteran status or long-term unemployment.”

A female CEO or icon in business or nonprofits you admire: “[Former eBay CEO] Meg Whitman, Muriel Siebert [the first female to own a seat on the NYSE] and Stacey Cunningham [first female president of the NYSE]. All three have been playing the game with the big boys and winning on their own merit.”

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