We’ve been following the series from Digital Currency Group highlighting women in Blockchain, and were inspired by this interview with Carolyn Reckhow, director of operations at ConsenSys. Reckhow discusses what interests and compels her about cryptocurrency, the applications and potential of Blockchain, her role at ConsenSys and what it means to be part of a burgeoning industry, her company’s focus on consumer applications in the Blockchain industry, and more. Read an excerpt below, and click through to read more.
Connect with Reckhow on LinkedIn.
When did you get into bitcoin?
I never got into Bitcoin, though I followed it a bit on Reddit in 2011. What really captured my interest was the advent of Ethereum, in particular the way that it was presented to me from peers in law and social science academia — as a paradigm shifting technology with incredible social, economic, and political implications. I was getting a graduate degree in Boston in winter 2014/15 when I was introduced to some folks that quickly became friends. They were a melange of people working/studying at Harvard Law and the MIT Media Lab and had all been brought together by their interest in smart contracts and Ethereum. We formed an informal working group we called a “salon” where we gathered weekly and nerded out about DAOs, smart contracts, the sharing economy, and a variety of blockchain use cases. Primavera de Filippi (one of the salon members) invited me to attend the first COALA blockchain workshop in March 2015. I flew out to Palo Alto where I joined a hackathon team with two members of ConsenSys. We won the hackathon with Fabriq, a identity and reputation management app for communities built on Ethereum. Not long after working with the Fabriq team to launch a prototype in May 2015, I officially joined the ConsenSys team.
What did you do before you got into this?
I was in academia, specifically social sciences. Long before this I worked as a therapist/social worker….and I still definitely practice as a “therapist” everyday running Ops for ConsenSys.
What’s been the most interesting experience you’ve had in your role so far?
Just being a part of the “blockchain 2.0”/Ethereum industry as it has grown from a research project into helping Fortune 500 companies build production blockchain applications. That’s been exciting beyond belief.