While things have seemed relatively quiet for the last couple weeks, we’ve been working hard in the background structuring the organization and reorganizing the team. What we have now is much stronger than what we had when we launched about a month ago, and what we have in the pipeline is even more exciting.
Zen Blockchain Foundation
Our goal is to decentralize sooner rather than later, and part of that is creating a community organization that’s above any individual. Meet the Zen Blockchain Foundation, a Delaware-based nonprofit corporation formed last week.
The Board of Directors for the nonprofit are those we formerly launched as being part of either the Core Team or the DAO officers: yours truly (Robert Viglione), Rolf Versluis, Jane Lippencott, Steven Nerayoff, and Carlo Vicari. These are founders and those with deep experience building cryptocurrencies from the ground up.
Community funds will flow through the nonprofit so there’s a formal entity instead of individuals handling resources, and the entity will have authority to enter into contracts using those resources. Now we can actually start hiring people and paying them for their hard work.
The Zen Team is Growing
What a lot of people don’t seem to realize is that our team is stronger than ever. Yes, we lost our lead dev a few weeks ago, but now we have a much more solid technical team that includes core blockchain support from IOHK’s Team Veritas; the team is led by Prof. Roman Oliynykov, Ph.D (cryptographer, IT security researcher, and developer of the the Kalyna block cipher and the Kupyna function), and includes Dmytro Kaidalov Ph.D (cryptographer & software developer) and Andrii Nastenko, Ph.D (cryptographer & IT security expert).
Additionally, on the tech team we have our own much-beloved devs you’ve probably all interacted with in Slack: Lukáš Bureš (PhD candidate in cybernetics and all-around nice guy!), Jake Tarren (Red Team Engineer at NASA), @anarch3 (project maintainer and one of our consistent go-to guys), @cronic (infrastructure and deployment pipeline), Mike Lorey (Web dev), Gustavo Fialho (Web dev and community support), and Simran Dhillon (Web / graphic design, asset management, and front-end development).
We’re fortunate to have Rosario Pabst helping out all over the place, and she has 12+ years of software project management experience (an M.S in systems engineering and a PMP), and Allan Dumaine with decades of software PM experience who will be managing the secure node development.
Successful projects have a wide range of motivated talent, partnerships, and advisors. We couldn’t be more grateful to Charles Hoskinson, the CEO of IOHK, for supporting the project. For those of you who don’t know him, he was one of the original co-founders of Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Bitshares. Each of these projects have been massively successful.
The top public relations (PR) firm in the industry, Wachsman PR, is also dedicating a team to Zen to make this project a success. A lot of the work they do is in the background, but is absolutely key to framing and propagating a positive media presence.
All-in-all, there’s been tremendous progress building the team and getting ready for an exciting roadmap execution. This is all just a start and we intend to continue growing the team and building partnerships. More to come on those details, but know that we have a motivated and capable team with an awesome community!