Bitcoin Foundation Opens Nominations for Empty Board of Directors Seat

Pete Rizzo
Feb 19, 2014 at 01:52 UTC
Updated Feb 19, 2014 at 01:53 UTC

The Bitcoin Foundation has announced that it is now accepting nominations for a new board member to fill the open spot left vacant since the arrest of former BitInstant CEO Charlie Shrem this January.

The organization broke the news via blog post on 18th February, setting a 7th April deadline for nominations.

Voting will be held on 21st April, with multiple voting rounds set to occur if there are a large number of nominees.

In addition to the overview of the voting process, the Bitcoin Foundation provided information on how prospective nominees will be allowed to campaign for the position, as well as a list of the specific responsibilities of board members.

Nomination process

To nominate someone for the seat, you must first be a member of the Bitcoin Foundation, or you must become a member by 31 March. Voting will also be closed to members.

As the seat is an “industry” seat, only “Industry Members” can nominate and vote. Further, nominees will be required to declare their intent to run for the position.

Interested industry luminaries were also invited to inquire in more detail as to the specific functions served by board members.

Said the organization:

“If you are an industry member or know of an industry member who would be interested in serving on the Board of Directors, we are happy to discuss further with you what the expectations and responsibilities of being a member of the board entails.”

Current board members

Once elected, the new appointee will join the seven-member board of directors at the organization. The board is comprised of one founder’s seat, three individual seats and three industry seats.

Current members include chief scientist Gavin Andresen; executive director Jon Matonis; Bitcoin Magazine manager of communications Elizabeth Ploshay; founder of Ribbit Capital Micky Malka; CEO of Coinlab Peter Vessenes; and Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles.

Ongoing controversy

Of course, Charlie Shrem is not the only member of the Bitcoin Foundation to have fallen under scrutiny. In recent weeks, a growing number of bitcoin users have begun to call for the resignation of Karpeles after he made what some deemed misleading statements about Bitcoin protocol to the mainstream press that were later debunked by other industry figureheads.

To date, a petition to have Karpeles removed from the board has received 563 votes. It has since been passed along to the organization, the petition organizer said, though a formal response has not yet been issued.

The Bitcoin Foundation has not responded to emails from CoinDesk asking for clarity on Karpeles’ standing at the organization.

Who do you believe should fill the empty spot? Leave your thoughts below.

Image credit: Empty board room via Shutterstock