Meet the Citizens of Consensus

A look at some of the people who attended the conference this year.

AccessTimeIconMay 31, 2024 at 10:55 p.m. UTC
Updated Jun 10, 2024 at 2:34 p.m. UTC
Starfox was introduced to Gunnar Lovelace by his girlfriend. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Starfox was introduced to Gunnar Lovelace by his girlfriend. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

You may have seen Starfox walking around the conference grounds parading a Jamie Dimon look-a-like with a whip. She’s part of the art/protest project, UNFK, created by serial entrepreneur Gunnar Lovelace. Outside of work, Starfox says she’s friends with Lovelace and his girlfriend and also plays in a glam rock David Bowie-esque band called Starfox and the Fleet.

“This is how I dress in my everyday life,” Starfox said. I don’t think she was joking.

Dustin Lee owns two homes in Boise, Idaho. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Dustin Lee owns two homes in Boise, Idaho. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

Dustin Lee drove down from Idaho to attend Consensus this year, in part to gain visibility for his Web3 marketplace DeStore. The shop, which Dustin described as crypto meets Shopify, uses the NFT-focused RMRK protocol that “bridges the physical and digital worlds.” If you run into Lee in the afterhours, he might just throw you a kandi bracelet.

Both Easy Eats and Clemente Varas worked as content producers before BoDoggos. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Both Easy Eats and Clemente Varas worked as content producers before BoDoggos. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

If you have ever heard the phrase “choose rich,” it might just be because of something Clemente Varas and Easy Eats put out into the world. The cowboy duo both work as content producers for Bodoggos Entertainment – a unit of viral sensation Nick O’Neill's company. “The whole thing is about making crypto fun,” Eats said. A peak behind the screen: The average BoDoggos video often takes only five minutes to come up with, and things are filmed, edited and posted in a matter of minutes, though an educational or paid advertisement could take three days to make.

“Nick is even funnier in person,” Varas said.

David Quinn has created embroidered goods for a number of companies across Austin. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
David Quinn has created embroidered goods for a number of companies across Austin. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Daniel Calderon said Generative Goods is hosting an event in Marfa, Texas this year. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Daniel Calderon said Generative Goods is hosting an event in Marfa, Texas this year. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

David Quinn, the founder of Austin Embroidery in North Austin, first connected with Generative Goods at SXSW. This would be his first Web3 conference. He has run his company for three years and has been in the clothing industry for about a decade. Daniel Calderon writes code for Generative Goods, which creates unique one-of-a-kind physical items like hats and clothes (with a digital counterpart that can be traded). The company, headquartered in art hub Marfa, Texas, is more of a proof-of-concept today but is hoping to one day get its algorithmically produced merchandise in stores.

“We want to prove we can produce unique, tangible assets at scale,” Calderon said.

Amanda Wick was a Department of Justice prosecutor before entering the crypto industry. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Amanda Wick was a Department of Justice prosecutor before entering the crypto industry. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

Last year, the Association for Women in Crypto ran an inclusion survey of 500 people across 200 crypto firms that found around 80% of women in the industry felt either sexually, mentally or physically unsafe at work. Nearly 50% of men responded the same way. “Crypto scored lower than tech, generally,” AWC founder and CEO Amanda Wick said, although she is seeing signs of progress. She said that this year Consensus, for instance, felt more diverse. And that there’s evidence that firms can improve – especially if they’re competing for talent.

“If you don’t want toxic workplaces, you have to start with better companies,” she said.

Steven Bischoff starting using TRON in 2018, before he joined the protocol as a contractor. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Steven Bischoff starting using TRON in 2018, before he joined the protocol as a contractor. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Hunter Rogers said investments are picking up during the bull market, with the average landing somewhere between $100,000 and $1 million. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Hunter Rogers said investments are picking up during the bull market, with the average landing somewhere between $100,000 and $1 million. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

Steven Bischoff is the community lead of TronDAO, the decentralized organization that technically comprises anyone who holds TRX tokens. Yesterday he said he met a woman from Africa who said oftentimes European banks are unwilling to accept wires from local institutions, and that TRON has become a lifeline for her. “It feels good actually doing good,” Bischoff said. “I’m an advocate for what I believe in.”

TronDAO's senior ecosystem dev and investment team lead Hunter Rogers, agreed. “The job takes a lot of coffee, but I love it,” Rogers said. Both are paid in USDT on Tron.

The USA meme coin is funding mechanism for charity. Left: G. Right: Thibault Palomares. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
The USA meme coin is funding mechanism for charity. Left: G. Right: Thibault Palomares. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

Thibault Palomares and "G." fully acknowledge that their meme coin has an inimitable ticker: $USA. Before leading a “community takeover” of the project four weeks ago, the two were artists and professional meme coin traders. They still are, but now they also carry the responsibility of running a charity that uses the profits from Based USA to donate to institutions that support military vets. So far, it’s donated over 38 million tokens, or about 4% of the USA supply, to a donation treasury multi-sig wallet.

Jen Wheatley is a marketing professional. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
Jen Wheatley is a marketing professional. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

Jen Wheatley fell in love with Polkadot the first time she interacted with it when introduced to it by Moonbeam co-founder Katie Butler, having come from the “Ethereum world” beforehand. A public relations professional with about 15 years of experience, Wheatley is now the director of marketing communications at Distractive.

From left to right: Mr. Pink, Rasul Elder and Attabotty. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)
From left to right: Mr. Pink, Rasul Elder and Attabotty. (Daniel Kuhn/CoinDesk)

The Pink Alliance is trying to do the metaverse differently. While most metaverse projects tend to focus on gaming, they’re trying to incorporate comic book culture, co-founder Rasul Elder said. The system is looking to connect Ethereum to Solana to Polygon to Ordinals. “We haven’t figured out exactly how to do Ordinals yet,” Elder admitted, noting that Bitcoin doesn’t have native smart contract support.

“There’s a story to the lore – the whole project is based around the metaverse itself,” he said. Elder, and his colleagues, CEO Mr. Pink and artist Attabotty, want to give users toolkits so they can design their own characters and stories and inhabit the web.

CORRECTION: Jen Wheatley works at Distractive. And it is Steven Bischoff, not David.

Edited by Nikhilesh De.

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Daniel Kuhn

Daniel Kuhn is a deputy managing editor for Consensus Magazine. He owns minor amounts of BTC and ETH.