OUR TEAM

Chicago Blockchain Project is an ongoing project with changing contributors. Some participate for a short period while others contribute for longer periods. Participants earn equity for the time they contribute based on our proprietary formula.

Disruption Joe

Founder

Joe Hernandez aka “Disruption Joe” is the Founder of Chicago Blockchain Project. His vision is a world where individuals create their own value instead of being told what they are worth. 

Why CBP: I believe the world is moving from the paradigm of competition to collaboration. The mission of Chicago Blockchain Project is to accelerate that change because it means a more sustainable, peaceful future where individuals are best enabled to pursue happiness.

My project: World Blockchain Project. There is no competition to a truly collaborative idea. I would like to see millennia old divides mended and the collaborative needs of becoming an inter-planetary species full filled by decentralizing our consensus of truth.

Jenny Balliet

Digital Media / Engagement

Jenny is an MLAW student, Education Policy, and Cyberlaw Advocate, driven to reforming how we look, think, and organize everything within educational systems through Blockchain and gamification. An avid researcher, her focus is facilitating, the BUIDL process through engagement to incentivize, grow, and sustain our ecosystem of impact.
She is Founder of MinED, an Education reform entity using Blockchain and cryptocurrency to empower and support all students as the most valuable stakeholders in their Education; Mediator & ADD Coach; SVP of Perede, AI and Peer Review on the Blockchain; and a vocal advocate for all of our innovative CBP projects. Her inspiration is connecting people, projects and passions to BUIDL Chicago into the Blockchain capital of the world.

Jeet Raut

Builder Coach / BUIDL Academy at Voice of Blockchain

Hi I’m Jeet Raut. My interests include blockchain, educational technology and artificial intelligence. I’m working with Chicago Blockchain Project to help develop the educational content around the BUIDL Academy to help attendees learn demonstrable new skills at Voice of Blockchain.

PAST CONTRIBUTORS

These are people who helped us to get where they are today.

Sharon Burns

Operations / Social Good

My passion is emerging technology and its implications for organizational effectiveness across all sectors. At the Chicago Blockchain Project I’m responsible for our internal operations, community outreach and creating new engagement opportunities for the social sector.
Outside of CPS, I’m CEO of Critical Blink, a technology consulting firm based in Chicago and Founder of DoersAndDonors.com. DoersAndDonors.com is a community platform that supports ‘data philanthropy’ a new method of collecting important data about investments in the social economy.

Josh Blaylock

Planning & Design for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Josh Blaylock is a cryptocurrency expert who hails from, unexpectedly, the world of comic book entertainment. He is most famous for his role in revitalizing ’80s brands G.I. Joe and Voltron in the early ’00s. His polymathic background, combined with his unique creative eye has allowed Josh to break down the subject of Bitcoin and distributed ledger technologies in a way the common person can understand.

Adam Koltun

Marketing Coordinator for Voice of Blockchain 2018

As Marketing Coordinator, I advise the planning committee for the 2018 Chicago Voice of Blockchain Conference, while providing some light oversight to the sales/marketing teams. I analyze marketing/sales strategies and implementation, and provide some optimization help, from an organizational perspective. I distill strategy and execution directions and disseminate them to the sales/marketing team, as well as filtering any questions/concerns from the team back up to management.

Chris Gonyo

Administration for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Chris Gonyo is a builder who loves to collaborate and learn. He joined the Chicago Blockchain Project to support and connect with the community as we learn from each other and grow together. He is the co-founder and CEO of Crypto Key Stack. A mnemonic keeper made from stainless steel.

Patrick Kijek

Technical Writer / Developer

Patrick studied English Literature at Grinnell College and became a teacher for five years before going back to school to get an M.S. in Computer Science, Information Systems and Network Security from DePaul University. He has authored books in his spare time which led him to learn to code because of his desire to build the ideas he created in science fiction stories. He now writes in English, Python, C, Java and Solidity.

Why CBP: I work with the Chicago Blockchain Project, because we have similar ideologies for decentralization. I contribute technical articles, analyze network infrastructure, and research ways to secure CBP’s code.

I would like to scale and deploy my decentralized application, MEthereum, with the help of the Chicago blockchain community. It provides smart contracts for students to hold their financial aid, visas and transcripts for more efficient access: students can customize their wallets with patches and skins for their achievements while philanthropes donate directly to the students whose projects they would like to support.

Christine Coffey

Operations for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Christine has honed her operational acumen through years of applying a range of technologies to the hedge fund and wealth management sectors. She has launched several start up funds and set up processes to optimize output while empowering small companies to grow in an efficient, structured manner.

When I learned about blockchain technology it instantly resonated and I knew it would change everything. I also knew that the brilliance and innovation emanating from the team assembled at CBP would make it a global force in influencing that change.

Of particular interest to me is the use of blockchain for social change.

Kristen Counter

Operations for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Kristen Counter is an accomplished Project Manager and Systems Analyst who joined the Chicago Blockchain Project with an immediate focus on the Voice of Blockchain Conference 2018.  She is passionate about decentralized applications, cryptocurrency and the world of IoT.  Kristen holds an excellent track record of strong working relationships with owners, developers and engineers resulting in successful outcomes.  She is a team player and supports the values of this emerging community which stands for collaboration, innovation and education.

Jessica Titlebaum Darmoni

Business Outreach for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Jessica Titlebaum Darmoni has over 15 years of experience building relationships, networking and connecting the dots. She is the Founder of The Title Connection, a marketing and business development firm in the capital markets. She is also a freelance journalist and frequent contributor to The Glass Hammer. Her content has also appeared in Automated Trader and Markets Media. She is a re-occurring presenter on Cboe Global Markets’ What’s Trading show and is on the Futures Industry Association’s Operations Americas Board. She built an extensive network as co-Founder and President of Women in Listed Derivatives (WILD). As WILD’s President, Jessica led WILD’s parent Board in Chicago from 2009-2014 and established branches in London, Frankfurt, Toronto, Mexico City and New York. She has a Bachelor’s of Arts in English from the University of Maryland in College Park and a Master’s of Science in Journalism from Roosevelt University.

Nick Schwietering

Business Outreach for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Former derivatives trader with 11 years experience in index options.  Avid learner, with interests in (but not restricted to) podcasting, blockchain, investing, biohacking, fitness, sports, music, and travel.

I was drawn to the Chicago Blockchain Project because of the collaborative community they are building.  I have strong belief that blockchain can make the world a better place for all, and want to be a part of the movement for positive change.

While I am fully committed to our efforts at CBP, I am also an active sports content creator for Bacon Sports, and volunteer in various ways with Chicago NORML.  In my free time I produce Nick’s Picks Podcast.

Henry Hughes

Summer Intern 2018

Henry is a student at The University of Texas at Austin majoring in Finance and minoring in Management Information Systems. He first got involved with blockchain when he began to invest in cryptocurrencies without truly understanding the technology behind them.

Why CBP: Once I did the proper research into crytpocurrencies, I immediately became hooked on blockchain and wanted to get involved on the business side whichever way I could. Here at CBP I’m mainly involved in the business outreach efforts and establishing first contact with other promising blockchain firms, but also assist in market research and other miscellaneous business activities. I’m beyond excited to help #BUIDL this blockchain community and see the heights this technology will take our world!

Brent Webb

Business Outreach for Voice of Blockchain 2018

Brent Webb is a U.S. Air Force veteran and former combat aviator in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. After finishing military service, he studied International Studies at DePaul University with a specialization in Surveillance and Digital Labor, and having a special interest in Delegative Democratic Theory. Now working in Community Development and Outreach, Brent is an active member of Chicago’s military veteran community and a District Officer in The American Legion.

Why CBP? The Chicago Blockchain Project is important because of the ways it can be used to positively affect communities and encourage collaboration among large sets of individuals. The technical utility of blockchain is important and ground-breaking, but CBP’s potential to encourage active, engaged, and enfranchised communities in the digital age is critical.

In addition to Brent’s work with the Chicago Blockchain Project, he is also an American Legion Officer and elected representative of over 3,000 veterans on the Northside and Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. His work is focused on modernizing The American Legion and improve its capacity to serve and advocate for military veterans.

Thomas Hernandez

Blog Writer

Thomas Hernandez is in his senior year at the University of Illinois at Chicago studying electrical engineering. His personal passion is in creative writing. Through story-telling, he finds a way to help the reader understand the complex problems being solved with blockchain. He currently serves as the Newsletter editor for our Blockchain in Chicago eMagazine.

OUR ADVISORS

Danny Johnson

Industry Expert

Danny is one of the most knowledgeable people in the blockchain sector in Chicago. As a professional poker player, he found bitcoin in 2012. Tired of seeing the bad press around bitcoin and other issues facing the crypto community, he created Pinkcoin 2014. Pinkcoin is a blockchain based donation platform for social impact. As Founder & CEO he has witnessed the innovation, difficulties, and attacks a blockchain network faces while their team developed one of the worlds earliest proof-of-work/proof-of-stake hybrid governance systems. http://getstarted.with.pink

He is now on the Chicago Blockchain Project team, an advisor to multiple crypto funds, and coach to reputable blockchain projects. He is an experienced CEO & CTO with a demonstrated history of excelling in the technology industry & blockchain sector. He received his Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) focused in Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services from Hawaii Pacific University where he was also a collegiate athlete.

Vic Pascucci

Vic is the Managing Partner of Lightbank. He is a native of Cleveland, Ohio and began his professional career in Chicago in 1994. Vic has over 17 years of experience in venture capital, fintech investing and financial services. He has been a part of over $650M in venture capital and M&A transactions. Vic has taken multiple companies public and through successful acquisitions.

Nissa Szabo

Nissa Szabo is a strategy, communications and public policy consultant who has served clients in disruptive technologies for over eight years. She currently consults for bloXroute, a zero layer blockchain scalability solution based in Chicago. While in Colorado she ran the Government Affairs for the Colorado Technology Association where she spearheaded legislation for companies including Visa, Google, Uber/Lyft and numerous startups. More recently, she directed the marketing and public relations for the AirSwap token sale where they sold over 119,511.44 ETH worth of tokens.

Nissa is passionate about creating an environment where innovation can thrive, and she is actively helping shape reasonable legislation for Blockchain and and Digital Assets. She currently advises and consults with Blockchain companies on strategic positioning, business strategies, public policy and partnerships. Nissa is the community development lead for the global Women in Blockchain group, and she uses her free time to help educate others on the power of Blockchain Technology. Nissa is a Colorado Native, and she currently lives in New York City. She enjoys traveling and connecting with different cultures and business ecosystems.

Conrad Barski

Conrad is the CEO of Forward Blockchain and the organizer of the Chicago Ethereum meetup. His knowledge of blockchain fundamentals is at the highest level in Chicago. He can be found speaking at many of Chicago’s blockchain events when he is not working on pilot programs for medical blockchain applications.

Besides being a medical doctor with a 14 year history in developing enterprise medical software at Wolters Kluwer Clinical Solutions, Conrad Barski has also authored multiple technical books and has been involved with blockchain technology since 2011.

Hannah Rosenberg

As an economics major, Hannah finds incentive engineering to be one of the most interesting aspects of blockchain technology. She comes from a true cypherpunk background and is the organizer the largest meetup in Chicago, the Bitcoin & Open Blockchain meetup. She is also an experienced Drupal developer and eCommerce expert. Her consulting firm Velas Commerce offers high-quality blockchain education for professionals and consulting for blockchain & eCommerce clients.

Yan Pritzker

Yan is a technology entrepreneur with 20 years experience in software development. Most recently he was the co-founding CTO at Reverb.com, which he scaled into the top 500 websites in the US. Creator of curated dotfiles vimworkflows.com and author of early open source git book gitworkflows.com. He writes on bitcoin and decentralization at yanpritzker.com.

Josephine Bellini

Creative Director

Josephine Bellini is serving as Chicago Blockchain Project’s Chief Creative Officer. Josephine is responsible for the brand experience behind the Voice of Blockchain 2018 conference, as well as creative oversight for Chicago Blockchain Project. She owns josie.io where she sells her crypto related art and merchandize. She also develops graphics and marketing materials for various blockchain and crypto companies, which can also be found on josie.io.

CM! Winters

Published LIS professional and inaugural Gates Millennium Scholar, offering over ten years of progressive experience managing high-priority projects for senior administrative teams in complex settings with exceptional project management, communication and leadership skills. Possess a commitment to life-long learning and an irrevocable belief in the honest broker approach. Credentials of distinction include ACRL/Harvard Leadership Institute for Academic Librarians (LIAL) fellow, Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Peer-Review Consultant, City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) Leadership Academy fellow, Salzburg Institute International fellow, and a Stoneybrook University & McCormick Foundation News Literacy Curriculum fellow.

Melvin Petties

Melvin is a Digital Strategy Leader with 15 years experience in both the public and private domain. His expertise is in rapid application development and proof of concept design for cutting edge, high-profile, strategic engagements. He specializes in helping executives avoid IT complexity risk and evaluating market products to support efficient software integration design and business workflow automation. Melvin spends considerable time organizing and hosting regional conferences and seminars on the subject of blockchain and DLT’s impact to the digital economy. He is a published writer and speaker who works diligently in the blockchain community to connect and align incentives for local talent and investment.

Adrian Cortez

Adrian Cortez is a seasoned thought leader and community builder in the nascent blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) industry. With a background in international business development, investment management, and entrepreneurship, he brings a global outlook supported by an extensive network and experience across multiple disciplines. With a keen understanding of how both public and private chains fit into the ever-evolving landscape of IoT and Fintech, Adrian is sought after by some of the most active, passionate, and insightful influencers in the space for his perspective on the industry.

Adrian is a graduate of Yale University and has spent a decade conducting business and networking in China. In his spare time, Adrian organizes blockchain-related meetups and hackathons and works to advance blockchain adoption in Chicago.

Holly Glowaty

Holly Glowaty is Co-Founder of Chicago based consulting firm: K+H Connection and produces Flourish: The Growth of Branded Currency Conference, and FinFoundHer Workshops. K+H Connection consults with merchant gift card, loyalty, promotional, stored-value and prepaid programs, in order to find new growth opportunities and technology partners for our merchant clients. Holly has spent over 12 years working with merchants to create profitable partnerships in FinTech, loyalty/rewards and Sports Marketing. Holly was named one of the 25 Most Influential People in Incentives 2017 by Incentive Magazine, is a founding member of the YMCA of Metro Chicago Associate Board, a founding Chair of FinTEx: FinTech Women.

Marquis Davis

Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Urban Array. Digital Growth & Marketing mentor at Techstars. Former CEO of Running Start Digital. Northwestern MBA. Driven to support and rebuild under-resourced communities and create sustainable triple bottom line social enterprises. A technologist focused on nurturing a more democratic and equal society.