To many, Cariss Lintao does not look like the typical app marketing CEO. After all, she is a woman and she’s only 22 years old. But, if the past has been any indicator, no one should ever underestimate this determined young lady. When she was a teenager and recent high school graduate, she was working for an independent app developer and helping to develop a trivia game. Just a few years later, she was interning at a tech marketing agency. It was during this time that she suggested some content about gender inequality in the world of tech. However, her boss at the time shut down the idea, stating that it wasn’t an issue at their firm. However, Lintao is quick to point out that she was one of only two women working there—out of a staff of 30. It’s easy to see why she decided to strike out on her own.
As far as role models go, Lintao has found one in Whitney Wolfe Herd, the founder of Bumble. Before founding Bumble, Herd was involved in an extremely contentious legal situation with her former employers at Tinder, where she was given unfair treatment as a woman. Lintao finds solace in Herd’s public victory and willingness to go out on a limb in order to protect her values. Lintao has pointed out how Herd consistently makes herself accountable for her actions and that of her app. She highlights how this approach differs from that of Jack Dorsey at Twitter and Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook. In Lintao’s view, these men have been remiss in their actions when it comes to protecting those who actually use their platforms. Although Lintao does admit that she thinks of the tech world as the Wild West, she’s still incredibly hopeful about what the future holds for her.
However, Lintao is emphatic that there are certain pieces of the puzzle that are missing because she is a woman. While men in tech often find it easy to locate a mentor, Lintao struggles in that department. After all, there are still so few female role models who can offer assistance. With Lintao’s successful track record, however, there’s no need to believe that she won’t conquer this considerable hurdle as well.