Derek is a Community Manager for Bloom Protocol — an end-to-end protocol for identity attestation, risk assessment, and credit scoring. He is a Linux System Administrator by trade, has held different positions in almost every industry, founded and sold two web hosting companies, and has long been an advocate for equality, privacy, and freedom of movement. Besides being involved in the cryptocurrency space, Derek is also a Municipal Councillor in Middlesex Centre, Ontario, Canada.
1) List five adjectives that describe you
2) Which living person do you most admire?
This is a tough one. So many previously admirable people have had allegations of some kind brought forth over the past few years, and I have always done my best never to hold one particular up on a pedestal. If I had to choose one, I would choose Satya Nadella. To take the reigns of a behemoth like Microsoft and turn it around fairly quickly, recently rivalling Apple’s market cap as the most valuable public company in the world, is no small feat. He also put an end to many of the petty fights with Linux distributions, and now Microsoft regularly contributes code to Linux.
3) What do you most value in your friends?
Compassion for others.
4) Where would you most like to live?
Besides a version of Canada that doesn’t have winter? I would have to choose Portugal. I have a lot of family there and it’s simply gorgeous; a completely different way of life but with all the modern amenities we enjoy now.
5) What is your current state of mind?
Very optimistic about some parts of life, while apprehensive about others. I think we’re seeing a type of disruption that will help level out opportunities for individuals around the world, but at the same time we have lots of big companies and countries not willing to do their part to help combat climate change and I am seeing its effects year after year.
6) What is your motto?
Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
7) Why are you passionate about your project?
Since my teens, I have been looking for ways to help raise the prospects for citizens of developing countries, and more generally those that find themselves in less fortunate circumstances than myself. I was very fortunate to come from a middle class family and a strong community. When you dig into the structural and systemic problems elsewhere, you find that much of it has to do with a lack of verifiable identity and, therefore, a lack of access to credit. Bloom solves those problems for many individuals.
8) Tell us the best story about your community
I think the best story would have to surround the level of friendliness, helpfulness, and genuine care for others that the whole community had late last fall and into early this year. People had lots of questions about what Bloom is, how it’s going to work, how voting happens, what staking means, and so on. The community really came together at that time to help each other out, even when the co-founders weren’t available. It was quite the sight to see and be a part of in late 2017 and early 2018, and we’re hoping to continue to foster that kind of comraderie into 2019 as well as we revamp the Community Alliance Program and introduce some new initiatives.
9) What are three things you find the most challenging about your job?
➡️ Making myself available 16 hours a day because we have community members in every timezone
➡️ Explaining the technical intricacies of the protocol and how everything works
➡️ Seeing all these new data hacks knowing that there is a solution available today that could help
10) What are three things about your job makes you feel the most fulfilled?
Meeting new people, hashing out ideas and concepts, and finding out how I can help others.
11) What is your biggest accomplishment as a community manager?
I think my biggest accomplishment is having people say, publicly, that I am the best community manager they know. Given how many other teams are out there building, managing, and growing communities, to hear that I’m among the best is truly heartwarming and makes me want to work even harder!
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