The Puerto Rico Blockchain Trade Association is pleased to announce the inaugural HODL Here Conference to be held on December 6, 2021 in San Juan, Puerto Rico during Puerto Rico Blockchain Week.
HODL Here was created to illustrate why this island has become the place to move to, what tax incentives are available, impact of crypto regulations in DC and PR.
Keiko Yoshino, Executive Director of The Puerto Rico Blockchain Trade Association notes, “The HODL Here conference is the best way to get the complete picture on why Puerto Rico is the new epicenter of blockchain innovation and at the forefront of positive change, and how you can be a part of that future.”
One full day of events includes presentations by government officials, sessions covering complex tax and legal issues in Puerto Rico and Washington, DC, and conversations with recognized names in the blockchain industry.
Attendees will receive actionable answers from local tax professionals, economic development officials, and entrepreneurs already doing business in Puerto Rico. Community leaders will showcase daily life in Puerto Rico and discuss how tax incentive policies have changed the island.
The HODL Here Conference will be held in San Juan, Puerto Rico on December 6, 2021. Check back for the full schedule of events. Register for the event here.
Schedule of Events
Monday, December 6th
8:30-8:35am: Welcome Remarks: Keiko Yoshino, Executive Director PR Blockchain Trade Association
8:35-8:45am: Speaker: The Honorable Rafael Hernández Montañez, Speaker of the House
8:47-9:20am: Why Puerto Rico?
Purpose: Introduction to PR and opportunities and spotlighting why people came back and have moved here
- Moderator: Alana Mediavilla, Filmkik
- Panelist: Erika Medina-Vecchini Endeavor PR
- Panelist: Ella Woger Nieves, Invest PR
- Panelist: David Johnston, DLTx
9:22-9:35am Speaker: Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC), “Puerto Rico’s Path Towards Competitiveness”
- Humberto Mercader, Assistant Secretary for Strategy and Policy
- Carlos Fontan, Director of the Office of Incentives
9:40-10:10am: Let’s Talk Tax Act 60
- Moderator: Giovanni Mendez, GEO Tax
- Panelist: Juan Carlos Stolberg, Stolberg Law
- Panelist: Martin Pirillo, Pirillo Law
- Panelist: Jeanelle Alemar, Jae Law
10:15-10:30: COFFEE BREAK
10:35-10:45am: ARCO & the Puerto Rico Manufacturers Association, The Future of Blockchain on the Island
10:50-11:20: Creating Community Through Blockchain
Purpose: How companies are creating community on the island
- Moderator: Scott Walker, Co-Chair PR Blockchain Trade Association
- Panelist: Medha Parlikar, CasperLabs
- Panelist: Tim Lewis, DEVxDAO
- Panelist Max Howell, Tea, inc.
11:25-11:50 Becoming CryptoCurious
Purpose: Crypto’s impact on the everyday lives of Puerto Ricans
- Moderator: Juan Carlos Pedreira, SBH Digital
- Panelist: Luis Pomales, Vanderbilt Hotel
- Panelist: Shirley McPhaul-Castro, PR Science, Technology and Research Trust
- Panelist: Giomar Alvera, Uber
11:55pm-12:05pm Ben DiScipio, BLOOM
12:05-12:55pm: BLOOM Sponsored Lunch
1:00-1:20pm Andrew Keys, DARMA “The Future of the Internet & Global Economy”
1:25-1:55 Social Media & Blockchain with Frances Haugen
- Hosted by Michael Terpin, Transform Group
2:00:-2:10pm: Cleve Mesidor, Blockchain Association “Fostering Inclusion in Blockchain”
2:35-3:30 Keynote Fireside with Hester Pierce
- Hosted by James Haft, DLTx
3:30-5:30 Networking & Open Bar/Pig roast hosted by DEVxDAO
Keynotes & Speakers
SEC Commissioner Hester M. Pierce
Hester M. Peirce was appointed by President Donald J. Trump to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and was sworn in on January 11, 2018.
Prior to joining the SEC, Commissioner Peirce conducted research on the regulation of financial markets at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. She was a Senior Counsel on the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, where she advised Ranking Member Richard Shelby and other members of the Committee on securities issues. Commissioner Peirce served as counsel to SEC Commissioner Paul S. Atkins. She also worked as a Staff Attorney in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. Commissioner Peirce was an associate at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale) and clerked for Judge Roger Andewelt on the Court of Federal Claims.
Commissioner Peirce earned her bachelor’s degree in Economics from Case Western Reserve University and her JD from Yale Law School.
James Haft is Chairman of DLTx, a public company listed on the Oslo Børs Stock Exchange of Norway that is the enterprise vendor for DAOs & blockchain protocols. He has over 30 years of experience in founding and financing businesses in emerging markets and technologies. Haft co-founded PALcapital LLC, in 1996, a merchant bank focused on businesses leveraging the digitization of information, as well as the largest decentralized blockchain-based meetup worldwide, CryptoMondays.
Filmmaker/CEO/Creative Director Alana Mediavilla has spent the last decade at the intersection of emerging technology and storytelling. As one of the few female CEOs in the creative and media industry, Alana has built and grown an award-winning production company producing both original and corporate content for clients such as Google, Apple, Paypal, Volkswagen, and Volvo.
Alana’s latest project, consulting with Roundtable Media, hopes to create a remote production workflow that will enable the company to create content at scale, in a decentralized platform.
In front of the camera, Alana has created an online course to teach people how to create their own video content and enjoys participating in podcasts and Youtube shows encouraging people to follow their entrepreneurial spirit.
In addition to her creative work, Alana is a mother of three and enjoys contributing her pictures to Unsplash where her work has been downloaded over 10 million times.
Ella Woger Nieves, INVEST PR
A Puerto Rico native, Ella brings 20 years of experience in strategic marketing and management consulting to strengthen Invest Puerto Rico’s endeavors. She played an instrumental role in the organization’s creation, helping establish InvestPR’s mission, objectives, and roadmap to accomplishing them.
A true believer in the island’s potential as a world-class investment destination, Ella ensures that all stakeholders – internal and external – are aligned to InvestPR’s vision of being a transformational and results- oriented accelerator of economic development in Puerto Rico.
Her 20-year career spans successful runs working with Fortune 500 companies in strategic sectors like financial services and life sciences, as well as counseling an array of leading public and private sector clients. Ella is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics.
David Johnston is a serial tech entrepreneur and early contributor to the blockchain ecosystem since 2012. In May of 2013 he co-founded the first angel investment group in crypto, BitAngels, and in August of that year served as a Foundation board member to the first ever token sale – Mastercoin. In December of 2013 he authored “The General Theory of Decentralized Applications,” which defined the "DApp" term for the industry. The following year, David co-founded the first crypto venture fund, the DApps Fund. In 2017, David was the first investor in Multicoin Capital, which today is a multi-billion dollar fund.
Today he serves as the COO of DLTx, a publicly traded company listed on the Oslo Børs exchange and is focused on building web3 by deploying infrastructure for blockchain at scale. David also serves as Board Member of Polymath and Silicon Valley Blockchain Society.
Erika Medina-Vecchini is the Founding Managing Director of Endeavor Puerto Rico. Her mission is to serve as a catalyst to sustainable economic growth by identifying, connecting and mentoring the best entrepreneurs in the island with global scale-up capacity.
After five years in New York City, Erika returned to Puerto Rico in 2017 to join public service, determined to help boost the local economy. As Chief Business Development Officer for Puerto Rico’s Department of Economic Development & Commerce and Industrial Development Company, she focused on strengthening the island’s economic value proposition, attracting new investment and diversifying Puerto Rico’s economic activity. She also became the main liaison to the fast-growing entrepreneurial ecosystem and investors, promoting cross-sectorial collaboration and supporting programs, tax incentives and startups enhancing innovation in the island.
With a Bachelor Degree in Public Communication from American University in Washington DC, Graduate Studies in Education & Public Policy from Columbia University in New York City, and 20 years of global experience in strategy, marketing, and business development, Erika is fully committed to leveraging her global network to position Puerto Rico as a competitive destination to do and grow innovative businesses