Who We Are
The Texas Blockchain Council is a nonprofit industry association made up of companies and individuals that work with blockchain and distributed ledger technology. Our mission is to promote blockchain technology initiatives that drive growth and benefit the citizens of Texas. We exist to amalgamate the influence of our members to advocate for blockchain-centric public policy initiatives, to educate members of government about the benefits of blockchain technology, and to provide subject matter expertise on topics related to blockchain and distributed ledger technology.
Lee Bratcher is the Executive Director for the Institute of Global Engagement at Dallas Baptist University as well as a faculty member teaching international relations and blockchain courses.
Lee received a blockchain instructors certification from IBM and researches blockchain solutions in land administration. He is a Captain in the US Army reserves working as an instructor for ROTC cadets at DBU and UT Dallas. Lee was awarded a master’s in International Relations from St. Mary’s University and is in his fifth year as a Ph.D. candidate at UT Dallas writing a dissertation on blockchain for land administration. Prior to his transition to academia, Lee served in the military and as a police officer in the DFW area.
He conducts the business operations of the Texas Blockchain Council and maintains strong relationships with members of the Texas Legislature and their staff. As the organization’s president, Lee serves as an ex-officio member of all policy and legislative committees within the Texas Blockchain Council.
Advisor - Venture Capital
Christopher Calicott is the managing director of Trammell Venture Partners, an Austin-based venture capital firm focused on investing in seed- and early-stage startups in three core technology domains: Digital Asset Technologies, Applied Machine Intelligence, and Security and Privacy Technologies, for which the firm has subject matter expertise that informs its investment strategy.mCalicott marries his own technology background with expertise in disruptive data analytics, machine intelligence, and multi-sided platform strategies, business development, corporate governance, and early-stage company growth mechanics. Within the digital asset space he has allocated to and managed venture investments in a number of sectors from liquidity service provision, to custody, protocol and smart contract platform innovation, and novel bitcoin- native financial products and services.
VP for Public Policy and External Affairs
Reed is the former Chief Operating Officer for the State of Texas (under Governor Greg Abbott). He is now CEO of Crestline Solutions, which helps clients that operate in highly regulated industries (including early stage technology companies) navigate government. For Reed’s Full bio click here.
Advisor - Fintech/ Tokenization
Cesare is an associate professor of finance and the director of the blockchain initiative at the McCombs School of Business - University of Texas at Austin. His research, published in the top Finance journals, includes work on fintech, corporate governance, credit rating agencies, small business financing. Cesare holds a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from the Politecnico di Milano (Italy), and an MBA and PhD in Finance from UCLA Anderson. Before his MBA, he worked as strategic management consultant at Booz Allen and Roland Berger in Italy, and as summer intern at the United Nations in New York.
Advisor - DTL and Enterprise Blockchain
Mance is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of strategic leadership experience in multi-national corporations, government agencies, and high-tech startups, and is Co-Founder and CEO of Hedera. His prior experience includes serving as the Head of Architecture and Labs at Ping Identity, Founder and CEO of two tech startups, the senior executive for product security at a $1.7B revenue organization, Program Manager for a very-large scale software program for the Missile Defense Agency, the Course Director for Cybersecurity at the US Air Force Academy, and research scientist in Machine Learning at Wright Laboratory. Mance received a MS in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts and a BS in Computer Science from Mississippi State University.
Advisor - Blockchain and Quantum Standards
Harold is an accomplished Senior Executive, thought-leader, and entrepreneur with more than 30 years of success across technology and cybersecurity industries. Harold is Chief Strategist, Futurist & Founder of BlockQAI, and A Real Blockchain Solution. Harold has held senior positions at companies like IBM, Citi, Christus Health and Elbit Systems of America. He chairs standards setting committees with the IEEE and the QEDC. He also works with the International Standards Organization (ISO.org) to define world-wide standards that are adopted for the technical committee ISO/TC 171 Document Management applications, where he clarifies how unstructured data is moved and shared throughout an organization.
Advisor - Finance and Strategic Partnerships
Mark R. Hoy is a Managing Director at Commerce Street Capital, LLC. His practice is focused on providing advisory services for small business owners and entrepreneurs who are using technology and innovative business models to target strategic “gaps” in markets. Advisory services include: undertaking and implementing strategic capital reviews, funding business growth, business development and strategic partnerships, and buying / selling businesses.
Mark has experience in the following industry sectors: Energy - upstream, midstream, utility / power, efficiency, renewables and smart infrastructure; FinTech - application of technology as financial and management platforms in financial and non-financial businesses; Blended Finance - innovative platforms / processes for impact investment. Mark received his Masters of Business Administration with Honors from the McCombs School of Business at UT.
Karen is an open source software engineer specializing in blockchain, artificial intelligence, and e-commerce. In 2016 she founded Kilroy Blockchain, which helps customers solve age-old problems using cutting edge technologies. Karen was named IBM Champion in the Blockchain category for 2020, and is author of O’Reilly Media Report - Blockchain as a Service. Kilroy Blockchain won the IBM Watson Build Challenge for North America in 2017. In 2018 Kilroy Blockchain was awarded a research grant from the National Science Foundation.
Advisor - Enterprise Blockchain
Paige is an Offering Manager on the Hybrid Cloud Integration team at IBM, with a concentration on the IBM Blockchain Platform. She strives to connect innovators & business leaders, equipping them with the expertise needed to accelerate their digital transformation journey, including the understanding and implementation of blockchain technology. In her current role as an Offering Manager, she is responsible for the go-to-market strategy and virtual engagement efforts supporting the Hybrid Cloud Integration portfolio. Prior to her role as an Offering Manager, Paige was a Digital Engagement Program Manager on the IBM Blockchain Platform team and she worked on the IBM Blockchain Business Development team.
Advisor - Research and Education
Michael is the CEO of Tarski Technologies and serves clients as a blockchain software architect and strategist. He has more than eight years of blockchain experience working with companies including Thomson Reuters, Toyota, Verizon and numerous startups. Outside of consulting, Michael participates in blockchain research and education at the University of Texas at Dallas as a Lecturer.
Advisor - Digital Identity
Natalie Smolenski is an anthropologist who leads business development for Hyland Credentials, a platform for issuing verifiable digital credentials using the blockchain. As an author and public speaker, she focuses on the intersections of identity, technology, and government. By bringing a scientific perspective to distributed digital technologies and social transformation, she helps audiences from all backgrounds understand how individuals connect to form communities and build the infrastructures of the future.
Advisor - Digital Identity
Jon is the principal of Vercey Consulting and serves clients as a Fractional CTO or Blockchain/Crypto Consultant. He has 25+ years of software product development experience, first as a software engineer, then architect, then global technology and business executive. Most of his career has been focused on creating cloud-based SaaS products used globally by accountants and lawyers within professional firms and large corporates. He spent two years leading Blockchain R&D for Thomson Reuters.