Blythe Masters’s accomplishments range from being the youngest female managing director in J.P. Morgan’s history at age 28 to leading the charge toward technological innovation in financial services as the current CEO of Digital Asset Holdings, a Manhattan-based startup. All this, and she’s a breast-cancer awareness activist and equestrian, too. We sat down with the finance pioneer at her serene, light-filled Manhattan home to discover what inspires her and how she is driven to be at the forefront of her industry.
What is your source of inspiration? What has been the driving force in your career?
My inspiration has always been about two things. First, believing in what I was doing and being "all-in" about getting it done. Working hard is easier when you know where you want to go and why. Second, believing in the people I work with. Loyalty to and from a team is one of the most powerful motivating forces in business.
Tell us about your recent career change and your role as CEO at Digital Asset Holdings.
I recently became the CEO of a startup FinTech company based in New York's flatiron district. After 27 years working for one of the largest financial firms in the world, JP Morgan, it has been a big change of environment. I love the intimacy and the fast past of a small, innovative and entrepreneurial firm. The highs and lows are more extreme and come at a greater frequency, and it is endlessly exhilarating.
What are you most excited about in the FinTech industry?
I am excited about the potential that FinTech has to revolutionize the way that financial services are delivered to customers. Everything from your education, to your car, your home, your employment and your retirement depends on the quality and cost of financial services. So providing better services and lower cost matters to everyone.
What are the biggest challenges of working at a start-up?
The challenges of a start up are obvious. Everything is hard because it is new and because resources are constantly constrained. At the same time, this freshness and leanness is what makes start ups able to achieve amazing things.
Where is your favorite place to destress from a busy day?
Evenings with my four dogs and weekends with my horses.
What does success mean to you?
Success to me means being able to take care of my friends and family and to be happy along the way.
Photography by Arturo Stanig