We asked builders in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space what they thought about the industry…and added some random zingers to keep them on their toes!
This week, we asked 6 questions to Alex Wilson, co-founder of The Giving Block — a crypto donation solution that provides an ecosystem for nonprofits and charities to raise bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Alex is the co-founder of The Giving Block, a Shift4 company. Giving Block is a leading crypto philanthropy platform that makes it easy for nonprofits to accept and fundraise cryptocurrencies, and empowers donors to use cryptocurrencies for their favorite causes. Alex oversees The Giving Block’s development in multiple areas, including technological innovation, crypto and financial partnerships, and institutional giving.
With a background in management consulting, Alex has worked with Fortune 500 companies to develop strategies for emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, IoT, blockchain and cryptocurrencies. As he went down the cryptocurrency rabbit hole, he and co-founder Pat Duffy discovered that nonprofits needed to capitalize on the growing population of cryptocurrency donors.
Alex is a graduate of Wake Forest University’s School of Business with a BA in Business and Business Administration with a concentration in International Business.
1 — What is the toughest challenge you have faced in our industry so far?
The biggest challenge is getting the people we talk to understand the benefits of the industry. I believe cryptocurrencies are one of the greatest forces of good on the planet, but many of the people we talked to have misconceptions about cryptocurrencies — from its environmental impact to the quasi-anonymity behind it.
2 — When you tell people that you are in the blockchain industry, how do they react?
I’ve found that most people are very receptive to what we’re doing at The Giving Block. A lot of times, people hear that you work in the cryptocurrency space and they have a preconceived idea of what it will look like. Then I went on to tell them what we did, we’ve raised over $100 million in cryptocurrency for nonprofits, and their response was moderate. I think our use case is more specific to people than many others, which makes it easier to understand and relate to than most.
3 — Have you ever bought a non-fungible token? What is it – if not, what do you think your first one was?
Yes, but only for charities. The first one I bought was from Nifty Gateway as part of a COVID relief campaign called COVID Heroes.
4 — Which two superpowers would you most like to have and how would you combine them, good or evil?
If I had to choose two superpowers, it would be teleportation and flight — so I could spend more time face-to-face with the nonprofits we work with instead of waiting in line at TSA.
5 – Tell us about a hidden talent – and give us a link to prove it!
I am bilingual – I have spoken English and German since I was a child.
6 – What talents do you lack and what do you wish you had? If you had it, how would you use it?
I always wish I could speak a third language. I think speaking fluent Spanish would be a very useful talent.