Olivier Janssens and Jim Harper have been chosen as new board members after the elections recently held by the Bitcoin Foundation. They will officially join the board for a two-year term on March 15.
— Bitcoin Foundation (@BTCFoundation) March 1, 2015
To win the elections, at least half of all voters have to approve the candidates. The run-off election included the leading 4 candidates, as none of the 13 candidates could get enough votes.
Harper and Janssens received 264 and 277 votes, respectively, beating their main rivals Michael Perklin and Bruce Fenton.
“Thank you everyone for engaging in this democratic process. From members to bystanders, we appreciate all the feedback and suggestions for improvement along the way,” said Elections Committee Chairman, Brian Goss.
Patrick Murck, Executive Director of the Bitcoin Foundation, stated in the organization’s blog: “I look forward to working with our newly elected board members and congratulations to every candidate for your active participation.”
However, the elections didn’t go smoothly, as the Bitcoin Foundation was criticized for poor organization of the voting process. The first round of elections was delayed due to the launch of new blockchain-based voting system, which appeared to be rather complicated and difficult. Because of these reasons, the elections were extended for one more day and stipulated voting through the old Helios system.
Janssens is an active proponent of digital currency and even compares it with the Internet, as one of the main developments over the last years. Besides, he participated in a number of investment rounds for various bitcoin startups. Janssens is an ardent supporter of the idea of decentralizing the digital currency and his views on easing the regulation of cryptocurrency were likely met with support from voters. During the previous elections Janssens also became the leading candidate after securing a 46.7% voter approval and this time, he maintained its top position by obtaining a 63% approval.
Harper, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, is known to be working on developing and adapting new laws and policies for the virtual currency. In 2014, he served as Global Policy Counsel for the Bitcoin Foundation. He also wrote the book, called “Identity Crisis: How Identification Is Overused and Misunderstood.” At his new position, Harper is expected to bring his new ideas and contribute to the future work of the foundation.
Founded in 2012 in Washington, the Bitcoin Foundation is highly committed to improve the digital currency and its technology. Thus, the organization has recently partnered with an ad agency TheAudience to start an educational campaign on bitcoin, which is projected to further promote the cryptocurrency and improve its public image.