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Debbie Madden, CEO - STRIDE NY

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2012, Click to Enter The 2014 American Business Awards

Company:Stride, New York, NY, USA
Company Description:Stride is an NYC's most sought after Agile development consultancy. We are proud to have 0% turnover and 75% women leadership.
Nomination Category:Individual Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category:Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Business Products –11 to 2,500 Employees

Nomination Title:Debbie Madden, CEO

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated entrepreneur since the beginning of July last year (up to 525 words):

Debbie Madden is a serial entrepreneur. She has founded and run 3 companies. She spent the past decade growing her prior consulting firm into a 5 time Inc 5000 winner. In 2014 she sold the business and founded Stride.

Stride is an Agile software development consultancy in NYC. With no outside funding, Debbie bootstrapped Stride. In 2015, Stride’s first full year in business, it is a $5M, profitable firm. She has achieved this while being a working mom of 2 young children, and while actively battling breast cancer which includes 5 months of chemotherapy.

Through strategic hiring, down to earth sales and passion-driven leadership, Debbie has put Stride on the map. The Stride brand stands for quality and integrity. As such, we are proud to call SaksFifth Avenue, Simon&Schuster, AXA, The Daily Beast, Plated, Gust, The Hollywood Reporter, Blackrock, Constant Contact, CUNY, The Ladders and more, among our clients in our first year in business.

At the heart of Stride, is a leadership team comprised of 75% women. But perhaps more importantly, Debbie has run Stride as she would a family. Integrity and passion drive all decisions. Individuals are empowered to be autonomous. Debbie has fired 2 clients this year, and believes employee happiness come first above all else, even in a consulting company. In an industry where average turnover is 44%, Stride’s turnover is 0%. That’s right. Not a single full time employee has left the firm. And, Stride has a 5 Star Glass Door rating.
Debbie continuously gives back to the tech community, taking the time to advise anyone who needs direction. She holds open office hours for those both inside Stride and throughout the tech community worldwide. She volunteers to speak at organizations including GAIN, Gilt Women’s Tech Leadership, Agile Alliance, General Assembly, CTO Summit, QCon, Dev Bootcamp, Write/Speak/Code and more. Debbie is a sought after speaker and writer, having appeared in Harvard Business Review, Fox TV, Huffington Post, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, InfoQ and more. In addition, Debbie is an advisor to dozens of NYC tech startups, serves as a mentor for Entrepreneur Roundtable Accelerator, and is an advisor to students at NYC’s Cornell Tech Campus.

In the midst of such growth and success, Debbie continues to care for each individual member on the team, by weighing developers’ preferences for working at different clients, and promoting a culture that is open and proactive through Monthly Huddles (where Debbie openly shares information on Stride’s financial standing and any victories or losses had by Stride) and Quarterly Company Meetings (the agendas of which are created by team members themselves). Anyone that has come in contact with Debbie will agree that she has a can-do, anything-is-possible, tell-it-how-it-is attitude about business - and life - that has allowed her to come across countless hurdles and not only climb, but soar, over them. She never ceases to inspire us with her perseverance and fortitude - and that, coupled with her honesty and empathy, sets the bar for any true entrepreneur.

Provide a brief biography of the nominated entrepreneur (up to 125 words):

Debbie has built 5 companies from the ground up and has been CEO of three of them. As CEO of Stride, Debbie brings 20 years of tech leadership, and a daily passion for helping businesses improve through software. Due to her reputation as a passionate woman executive in technology, Debbie is a sought after speaker and writer, having appeared in Harvard Business Review, Fox TV, Huffington Post, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, InfoQ and more. Prior to Stride, she was the CEO of Cyrus Innovation, which she ran for 10 years, grew into a 5-time Inc 5000 winner, and Crain's NY Best Place to Work.