Abigail Mrozinski, Wilmington Trust | Most Powerful Women: Next
Segment chief financial officer
When M&T Bank was acquiring Wilmington Trust in 2011, it tapped into Abigail Mrozinski's deep understanding of its newly added wealth business to help the merger go smoothly.
Though barely into her 30s at the time, Mrozinski spearheaded the integration of the wealth and institutional services division into M&T's larger banking operations.
Her role as the director of corporate analysis kept her in regular contact with M&T's top executives as they navigated the risk assessment phase of the merger, with Mrozinski giving strategic recommendations and participating in long-term planning.
In the years that followed, the groundwork that Mrozinski helped lay proved crucial to the success of the combined institution.
The $350 million acquisition allowed M&T to supplement its already strong commercial and retail banking products with a full suite of wealth and institutional client services.
"Now it’s all about growth," said the 38-year-old Mrozinski, who is one of 15 women selected for our inaugural Next list. (This extension of our Most Powerful Women in Banking program is meant to highlight high-achieving women in the leadership pipeline who are age 40 and under.)
Mrozinski went on to play a key role in Wilmington Trust's management of the General Motors liquidation trust, one of the largest transactions in its history.
She helped negotiate with the Treasury Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission to get permission for Wilmington Trust to establish publicly traded units of the liquidating trust — the first time that authority had ever been approved for such an entity.
Her performance during the GM deal led to her being recruited to become chief financial officer of the wealth and institutional services division, which she has helped grow into the third-largest business within M&T.
The division has had a compound annual growth rate of 20% for the years since 2012, with revenue now approaching $900 million a year.
"While extremely detail-oriented, Abby never loses sight of the bigger strategic picture, which is critical when working on complicated transactions." — Bill Farrell, executive vice president for institutional client services
But Mrozinski admits she hesitated before accepting the CFO role in October 2017. “Are you sure I’m ready for this?” she recalled asking Bill Farrell, executive vice president for institutional clients services, one day over lunch.
“You can absolutely do this,” he replied. “All you need is thicker skin.”
That insight has proved to be helpful to Mrozinski over and over again. “I can’t tell you how many times I’ve repeated this in my mind," she said. "It sounds simple, but it was very impactful for me.”
Nominating executive: Bill Farrell, executive vice president for institutional client services
What he says: “While extremely detailed oriented, Abby never loses sight of the bigger strategic picture, which is critical when working on complicated transactions,” Farrell wrote in nominating Mrozinski for the Next list. “And Abby is someone I want on our most complex transactions. She has excellent analytical capabilities, and can assess large data sets quickly to ascertain key trends and issues.”