After spending a decade in the field implementing International Development and Humanitarian Aid projects, Shannon entered the blockchain/cryptocurrency space seeking ways the technology can be employed to create resources in developing countries.
Having worked with organizations such as USAID and Doctors Without Borders, she now travels the globe helping the biggest projects in blockchain to build cohesion and catalyze the decentralist movement. This effort is powered by Presearch, a decentralized, community-fueled search engine empowering users to own their data and adopt a more evaluative approach to search.
She is dedicated to leveraging peer-to-peer, decentralized systems to awaken capital and help pull our global neighbors out of poverty.
1) List five adjectives that describe you
2) Which living person do you most admire?
Jacqueline Novogratz, founder of the Acumen Fund. Jacqueline’s strategy to development is a slow, intentional approach that has the long-game in mind rather than quick, flashy results. I am a huge proponent of finding alternatives outside the nonprofit/for-profit duality, and Acumen was one of the first to find success in that space. She’s smart, she’s committed, and she’s making a huge impact. She’s one of my heroes.
3) What do you most value in your friends?
Mutual support. A former life coach, I am often called upon to help work through problems, shift perspective, tease out learning or hidden patterns. It’s important to me that my friends be able to provide the same honest reflection and to be able to further each other’s evolution.
4) Where would you most like to live?
My goal is to have a place in the mountains (I love the Colorado Rockies, but I’m open), a place on the beach (Costa Rica, Indo — also open!), and an apartment in the Saint Germain neighborhood of Paris. Woods, water, wonderful food.
5) What is your current state of mind?
To be open to how the journey progresses. One thing we know for certain in the decentralist movement is that nothing is certain — markets fluctuate, companies (and leaders) rise and fall — the space continues to shift from moment to moment. Staying open to navigate the rapids as they are is all we can do optimize opportunities as they come.
6) What is your motto?
My friends may disagree with this — perhaps there is an adage I often repeat — but I don’t think I have a motto.
7) Why are you passionate about your project?
Because data ownership and agency is important. Because offering Main St. an easy way into the cryptosphere is important. Because open source and collaboration (rather than opaque, proprietary algorithms) are important. Because the next digital revolution will be about transparency and putting power back in the hands of the users, and the decentralize movement is leading the way.
8) Tell us the best story about your community
Our community grew from 40,000 people in our private beta to over 850,000 in our public beta in less than a year. Our community is amazing! We have grown all through referrals — no advertising outside of industry conference sponsorships. We just keep conveying the message and our community keeps helping to spread it. We have one of the best groups of supporters on the planet.
9) What are three things you find the most challenging about your job?
➡️ Not being able to be in numerous places at once.
➡️ Selecting which events to attend and which (unfortunately) to miss.
➡️ Not being able to hold a single event that would bring our entire community together.
10) What are things about your job makes you feel the most fulfilled?
Hands-down the best part is being able to translate and clarify complex technological concepts to people who don’t think of themselves as “technologically inclined.” My first mission was to be a human face for this digital space and help convey the core ideas to people who were/are still skeptical.
I love being able to help people see the vision of the decentralist movement and how this technology is going to help us all. The social impact side of DLTs is HUGELY important to me, so I do all I can to further for-good projects.
And being able to move the needle for my company. It’s hugely rewarding to have team members attend events and have people say “I love you guys!” I receive feedback on us all the time, but it’s a treat to have my colleagues experience the positive place we’ve developed for ourselves in the community by being so focused on being of service.
11) What is your biggest accomplishment as a community manager?
Hmmm…that might be a better question for my network. My goal is to simply keep going out and helping as much as I possibly can. Showing up each day with the solitary goal to be of service means we’ve made hundreds of introductions, connected dozens of companies with talent, and effort to put wind at the backs of teams that working to make a difference. Being able to help the entire crypto community is all the accomplishment we need.
Connect with Shannon
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