Blockchain Insider: Karima Williams

Karima a community builder and the founder of the DC Crypto Club. She created the DC Crypto Club to deliver substantial education and meaningful experiences to those who are new and already active in the blockchain community. Karima is currently a digital advertising associate at Revolution Messaging and started her career introducing new policy and technology to DC residents under the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. She lead the digital strategy and oversaw over 40 enrollment events over 3 enrollment periods. Karima is a community organizer at heart and after witnessing the social media collaboration of the Arab spring, she started an online community on Facebook for her neighbors called “Connect Prince George’s” in 2013. The Connect Prince George’s facebook group continues to thrive with 10,000 members, daily interactions and posts about Prince George’s politics, crime, job opportunities and local events.

Karima Williams, Founder of DC Crypto Club

1. Why is blockchain a technology that the general public should pay attention to?

For the past few months, I’ve been giving presentations to friends and family about bitcoin and blockchain technology. I recently decided to extend these lessons to local community centers. I chose to do this because blockchain technology is going change a lot about how we live and the way we do things, especially financially. As I create the content for my community presentations, my main focus is on conveying the “why” and not the “how”. The general public may not fully understand the technology but it’s important for them to have an introduction and to give them an opportunity to be apart of the conversation as this space grows.

2. What is your role in the blockchain space?

I’m a community builder and social architect. I host educational events through the DC Crypto Club and I give private presentations to friends and family. I also attend many events so that I can collect information and connect people that are looking for someone who can advise or people who are looking for collaborators on a specific project. Although I love meeting people and building communities I know that being a student and constantly learning is most important for me. I become a better contributor and community member the more educated I am on blockchain. My current learning focus two tiered. First I am learning about blockchain in general it’s applications and use cases. Second, I am learning the anatomy of crypto communities, how they formed and how they are sustained. My goal is consult cryptocurrencies on how to build a community around their projects and how to consider that community before building the coin/token.

3. Which blockchain developer, entrepreneur, or public leader do you admire the most?

People in this space amaze me everyday, it’s hard to narrow down to a few so I’ll mention the people who first ignited my fiery passion for blockchain. Andreas Antonopolous speaks so eloquently about bitcoin and watching him on youtube helps me to affirm my understanding of bitcoin and the macro implications. Carter Thomas is someone else who admire because we both come from marketing backgrounds. He knows how to present information impartially and provide value with every video he posts. It’s so many youtubers out there shilling coins and being flashy, it gets annoying. I really appreciate Carter’s perspective on the market and the market psychology analysis that Carter provides. After I watch his videos, I think and contemplate on my investments and how to become a better investor. Lastly, you Portia are one of my favorites. It’s an incredible feeling to see another black woman pave her way in this space. You’re incredibly talented and considerate. You’ve helped me to learn about this space from a developer’s perspective which is very helpful as a community builder. I look forward to see the impact you will make in the blockchain space.

4. What problems do you see blockchain solving?

Coming from a political background, the first thing that comes to mind for me is blockchain technology solving the issues with voting such as waiting in long lines, access to polling places, voter suppression and government manipulation. I believe we will find a way to make voting secure and accessible using blockchain technology. No need for “recounts” because the blockchain is immutable. Once we are able to verify identity on the blockchain there will be no need for Voter ID laws that intentionally target people of color and low income voters. Voting on the blockchain can be use as a tool to push the government to be transparent when it comes to elections.

5. How did you become interested in blockchain?

I have a friend who is a cyber security professional and really into hardware. I called him to talk about a technique I was developing to drive traffic to a website to increase ad revenue. As I was running down my whole plot He told me “you need to get bitcoin now”. I had heard of it before on twitter see year back but never paid attention to it. I decided to look into it. Everyday I talk to him he would ask me what did. you learn today and I felt obliged to report back with what I learned. The rest is really history, since that day, I’ve spent my nights and weekends learning and much as I can and trying to figure out where I fit in this space. It’s crazy to me, when I step. back and look at what I’m doing that bitcoin has changed my life for the rest of my life. I’ve made a lifetime commitment to this without even realizing it at first and that is beautiful to me.

Portia Burton is founder of The Blockchain Explainer. If you want to learn more about this emerging technology be sure to sign up for The Blockchain Explainer newsletter.