Dr. Ali Emdad is the Associate Dean of the Earl G. Graves School of Business and Management at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland. He oversees all daily operations in the Graves School and assists the Dean in setting the vision and strategic priorities for the School. He is the Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Blockchain and Financial Technology (The FinTech Center) where he manages a multi-year, multi-million dollar grant received from Ripple in February 2019. Previously, he served as the Founding Chair of the Department of Information Science and Systems in the Graves School where he holds rank of Full Professor with tenure. Dr. Emdad provided leadership for the department’s growth and addition of new programs including the B.S. in Supply Chain Management; the M.S. in Project Management; the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Project Management (both online and on campus); and the Information Systems Track in the Ph.D. Program in Business Administration.
Professor Sanjay Bapna is Professor and Chair of the Department of Information Science and Systems. Prof. Bapna received a BTech. in Chemical Engineering in 1981 from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, an MBA. in 1987, and a Ph.D. in Management Information Systems in 1992 from The University of Iowa. He has received many honors including the prestigious 2011 Best Paper award, the 2009 Best paper award from the internationally recognized National Decision Sciences Institute, the 1994 best paper award from the International Association of Computer Information Systems. Prof. Bapna has also secured several grants from the Department of Transportation and is an authority on analytics and modeling, as well as Commercial Vehicle operations.
Nathaniel Rose is a Senior Software Engineer at Ripple on the Data Platform Team, co-lead of the Black at Ripple Employee Resource Group, and active web3 developer. He is a former ex-Microsoft engineer and Neurotechnology Researcher who focused on gaze selection and brain-machine interfaces. Nathaniel advocates for education equity – having aided students with STEM skills, giving underrepresented students the edge to pursue future life endeavors in tech.
Commissioner Johnson was sworn in as a CFTC Commissioner on March 30, 2022, after being nominated by President Joseph Biden in September 2021, and unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate. Commissioner Johnson is a nationally recognized expert on financial markets risk management law and policy with specialization in the regulation of complex financial products including the origination, distribution, and secondary market trading, clearing, and settlement of securities and derivatives. She is an internationally recognized expert on financial markets regulation and corporate governance, compliance, and risk management. Her recent work examines the implications of emerging innovative technologies including distributed digital ledger technologies that enable the creation of digital assets and intermediaries and artificial intelligence technologies that target commercial and consumer financial transactions, transfers, and assessments.
Tyneissa Brown is the Program Coordinator of the National Center for the Study of Blockchain and Financial Technology. She is a Certified Agile Scrum Master (CSM) with a proven history of executing projects. Her background is in the field of agile project management. She specializes in project facilitation, graphic design, social media development, and telemarketing.
Katayoon Beshkardana, holds a doctoral law degree from American University Washington College of Law (S.J.D.). She is an expert in technology law and policy, law of the World Trade Organization, foreign investment law and investor-state dispute settlements (ISDS). Her research is focused on new technologies and data protection and privacy, transparency, China and distorting trade practices.
Prior to joining Morgan State University Dr. Beshkardana worked as consultant with the World Bank Legal Vice Presidency. She has also worked as in-house legal counsel for the private sector carrying international investment and business transactions and contract negotiations for several years.
Christian has over 15 years experience delivering meaningful impact for organizations and leading as a lawyer, marketer, software developer, and intelligence professional. Christian is currently a policy advisor at Google where he develops policy on areas like crypto, gaming, firearms, adult content, hacking, and inappropriate language for YouTube and Google Ads. Prior to Google Christian was a strategy consultant at Accenture, practiced international litigation at Steptoe & Johnson and was a signals intelligence analyst in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division where he was awarded the Bronze Star during combat operations in Afghanistan.
Christian is also a professor of business at Stillman College, an HBCU in Tuscaloosa Alabama, where he teaches courses on Business Law and the Commercialization of Crypto Technologies. At Stillman, Christian also serves as the executive director of the Stillman DAO, a student managed decentralized autonomous organization investing in high-yield crypto assets. Christian recently founded Easter Egg Labs, an Atlanta based experimental game studio focused on developing sustainable Web3 gaming economies.
Jack Crumbly (Ph.D. Jackson State University) is an Associate Professor in the Andrew F. Brimmer College of Business and Information Science at Tuskegee University. Jack received his BS in Marketing from Grambling State University and his MBA specializing in Management Information Systems from Wright
State University. His interests include measuring supply chain value through reverse logistics, information technology, pricing, and new service offerings. Prior to pursing his Ph.D., Crumbly was an information technology consultant for the United States Air Force Research Laboratory specializing in the database administration and IT application design.
I am Mohammad Mahdi Moeini Gharagozloo, a Ph.D. in Strategic Management and International Business at Earl G. Graves School of Business at Morgan State University. When it comes to research, I consider my focus to be in the areas of Digitalization of Economy, International Business and Cryptocurrencies, exploring topics related to propensity and performance in international business. In my papers, I usually examine external environment factors and the effect they might have on Corporate Strategies including M&As, JVs and adoption of cryptocurrencies. I often apply a longitudinal fixed effect analysis to analyze the effect of external environment characteristics on corporate strategies. More specifically, I explore the stock market reactions to market announcements and the effect that business environment might have on these market reactions. I’m a big fan of utilizing “resource-based view” and “institutional theory”, as I explain market reactions and for measurement purposes, I often use event analysis and calculate cumulative abnormal returns in financial markets.
Mohammad Abdus Salam received his bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronics engineering from Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology, Bangladesh in 1991. His masters and Ph.D. degrees are from the University of Fukui, Japan in 1998, 2001, respectively. He is currently a professor of Computer
Science at Southern University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He has over 18 years of teaching and research experience. His research interest includes wireless sensor
networks, wireless communication, data science, cybersecurity, information and coding theory, data visualization. He has taught a variety of courses in the field of computer science and engineering. He has authored and co-authored many international journals, conference proceedings, and a book chapter. He served as a guest editor for many journals. He also served on the editorial boards and panelist for NSF, NASA, and many conferences.
He is a senior member of IEEE and president-elect of the of Louisiana Academy of Sciences. He was awarded numerous awards throughout his career including the faculty outstanding achievement award from the President of the Southern University System, NASA faculty fellowship award, ONR Faculty fellowship
award, NSF/QEM faculty fellowship award to conduct research at The University of California Berkeley, Gold medal award from the Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology, and Chancellor award from the President of Bangladesh.
Dr. Miesha Williams, Associate Professor, is a new faculty in Spelman College Economics Department. She recently completed her position as Visiting Scholar with USC Price Public Policy School and was previously employed by Morehouse College. She researches macroeconomic policies in Africa and the U.S as well as disparate outcomes impacting race. She’s obtained grants and scholarships from Title III, NSF, USDA, Carnegie Foundation, Koch Foundation and NIH. She’s published in AEA Papers and Proceedings, Southern Economic Journal, Journal of Economics Race and Policy, Review of Black Political Economy, and co-edited a special issue on Social Justice with the Agricultural and Resource Economics Review. She is a National Economic Association board member, secretary to the African Political Economic Association, and Research Associate with University of New Orleans Entrepreneurship Center. Williams’ Economics’ B.S. (2007) is from Florida A&M University, while her M.A. (2010) and Ph.D. (2014) is from University of Alabama.
Richard Maiti is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Kentucky State University, College of Agriculture, Communities, & Sciences, School of Science (ACS), Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (SoSTEM). Dr. Maiti has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Kentucky, a Master’s in Applied Computer Science from Eastern Kentucky University, a Master's in Business Administration from Morehead State University, and a Ph.D. in Information Systems from Nova Southeastern University – Florida. Dr. Maiti is a member of the computer science admissions committee. Dr. Maiti has years of academic and industrial experience working with Fortune 500 companies. . Over 10 years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies: IBM, Lexmark, and Dell. Technically, proficient in numerous programming languages and software applications with experience in leading teams of developers, designing applications, and managing small-scale projects. Dr. Maiti has worked in healthcare analytics. In academics, Dr. Maiti has worked primarily with first-generation college students. Research in Non-Functional Requirements (NFRs) during the early stages of agile software engineering. Current research also includes diversity in cybersecurity. Recipient of Server Resource Management (SRM) Development Excellency award, IBM BRAVO Award – SRM/A Agent development, IBM 10-year service recognition award, Rockwell Collins recognition for development on Bombardier Global Express jet, and nominated for University of Kentucky Dean’s award for an outstanding employee.
Lene Martin, Senior Manager, Crypto University at Coinbase
Dr. Lene Martin leads Crypto University at Coinbase, focusing on company-wide and world-wide understanding of web3. She also founded and served as director of Blockchain at Pepperdine University. Through publications, advisory roles, board memberships, dissertation committees, and faculty positions, she amplifies web3 paradigms bridging academia and industry to transform education.
Jonathan King, Principal, Coinbase Ventures at Coinbase
Jonathan King (“JK”) is a Principal at Coinbase Ventures and leads investments into early-stage startups building web3 developer platforms and tools. JK has been in the crypto space since late 2016 and previously worked at Microsoft. He has 11+ years of functional experience that spans product, engineering, and corporate strategy.
Raina Foster manages a global Learning & Development team at Coinbase, and is a crypto enthusiast pursuing her Masters degree in Blockchain and Digital Currency from the University of Nicosia. She is a life-long educator having led instructional strategies in the university, fintech, and crypto spaces in the U.S. and abroad.
Jeremy Jones, Teaching Engineer, Crypto University at Coinbase
Jeremy Jones is a Teaching Engineer at Coinbase focused on technical and non-technical crypto education. With a background in anthropology, linguistics, computer science, and music, he has had a diverse career ranging from working as a software engineer in the startup world to teaching for over a decade at various universities.
Shonda Bernadin received her PhD in Electrical Engineering from Florida State University (2003), her MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Florida (1999) and her BS in Electrical Engineering from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (1997). She is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. Her research interests include speech and image processing, data analysis, natural language processing, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). She is very active in engineering education and outreach programs that seek to increase diversity in the STEM.
Maryam Taeb received her B.S. degree in Computer science from the University of Central Florida, USA 2019, and her M.S. degree in Computer science from Florida A&M University, USA 2021. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at FAMU-FSU College of Engineering, USA. Her research interests include data science, machine learning, and its applications on human-computer interaction (Deepfake detection, fairness in language and facial recognition models), cybersecurity, and blockchain.
Kevin Massiah serves as the Director of Exams over the Cybersecurity, Operational Resiliency, and Emerging Technology team for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (FRBA). He is part of the Federal Reserve’s System Fintech Supervision Program’s (SFSP) Emerging Technologies workgroup and involved in fintech outreach efforts. Kevin works out of the Miami Branch and has been with the FRBA for 7 years. He previously served as Assistant Central Point of Contact for a regional bank, worked on Atlanta’s fintech high priority initiative, and been involved in various initiatives across portfolios. Prior to joining FRBA, Kevin spent 7 years at the FDIC in a variety of roles working through the great recession supervising community, regional, and large banks.
Pamela Cooper serves as the Manager for Technology Adoption and Customer Experience for the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (FRBA).
She works with the Business Technology and Security division of the FRBA, the division responsible for IT Training, Technology Consulting, User Experience Research, Application Development, Data Management, and Cyber Security. Pamela is involved in a variety of system work groups and Employee Resource Networks including IDEA Network, Learning Innovation Communities,Blacks United in Leadership Development (BUILD), and the Disability Awareness Community. She has worked for the FRBA for eight years. Prior to coming to the Federal Reserve Bank , she worked in IT Consulting and Training in the Telecom, Media, and Entertainment sector and for Virgin Media in the United Kingdom. Pamela is a proud HBCU graduate and received her BA from Spelman College and her MBA from Mercer University in Atlanta, Georgia. Passionate about student engagement, she currently serves as the Atlanta HBCU Alliance Chapter representative and the Southeast Regional Coordinator for the National Alumnae Association of Spelman College (NAASC).
Kevin Harris currently serves as Senior Director of Government Affairs and Community Engagement North America at Crypto.com. At Crypto.com, Kevin leads the company’s engagement with federal, state, and local government officials as well as external partners committed to equity and financial inclusion.
Prior to joining Crypto.com, Kevin spent over a decade advising political leaders, nonprofits and corporations, including more than 100 campaigns for federal, state and local office and successful passage of various ballot initiatives focused on criminal justice reform, economic empowerment, education funding, Medicaid expansion and civil rights.
Kevin also has extensive experience in government. During the Obama Administration he served in the White House Office of Legislative Affairs, Office of the United States Trade Representative, Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Peace Corps where he directed outreach to state and local governments and helped build support for various high-profile priorities including the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act, trade agreements with Columbia, Panama and Korea, and First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let Girls Learn initiative.
Previously, Kevin has also served as Executive Director of the Congressional Black Caucus, Communications Director to Rep. Karen Bass and Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, and Chief of Public Affairs for former Baltimore City Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake.
Kevin received his B.A. from Howard University and a M.A in Government from Johns Hopkins University.
Dr. Xiaoming Li is a professor in the Department of Business Administration at Tennessee State University. He joined Tennessee State University after receiving his Ph.D. in Management from Clemson University in 2003. Dr. Li’s current research interests include blockchain, COVID, stochastic inventory management, reverse logistics, public procurement, and evolutionary game theory. He has extensive experience in applying various research methods: mathematical programming, survey, field study, and simulation. Recently, his articles have appeared in various refereed journals, such as Computers and Industrial Engineering, International Journal of Production Economics, and Omega.
Brian Dawson oversees partner relations for the RippleX a division of Ripple Labs. He has more than 29 in software development and delivery in multiple domains, including strategy, product and engineering. His early career was spent in R&D and 3rd Party Relations at Sony Computer Entertainment America, where he built the Worldwide Tools and Technology program. He is now focused on supporting the companies bringing the next generation of blockchain use cases to market.
Dr. Shael Wolfson is an economics professor at Xavier University of Louisiana and a life long resident of New Orleans, Louisiana. In 2018 Dr. Wolfson began teaching the course Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and Society as an elective in the university core curriculum. The goal of the course is survey underlying blockchain technology, explore digital currencies in the context of traditional economic theory and investigate the potential applications and societal impacts of this emerging technology. Published research in the cryptocurrency area includes (2015) Bitcoin: The Early Market Journal of Business & Economics Research (JBER), 13(4), 201–214.