The Blockchain Association, a leading trade association and lobbying group, has appointed Ron Hammond as its new Director of Government Relations.
The Blockchain Association has been one of the biggest advocates of the cryptocurrency industry in Washington, DC since its launch in 2018. CEO Christine Smith was recently featured in Cointelegraph’s Top 100 Companies list.
Meanwhile, Hammond has cut his teeth working on actor Warren Davidson’s crypto policy, most notably the Token Classification Act, which is also the root of the relationship with the Blockchain Association. Hammond told Cointelegraph that he was at the Davidson Crypto Industry Stakeholder Roundtable in September 2018, where the inaugural Public Blockchain Association appeared.
Subsequently, Hammond served as a lobbyist for Ripple prior to independence earlier this year.
Hammond is the fourth new full-time blockchain association hiring since the new year, “more than double the number of permanent and untrained employees on the team,” said Graham Newhall, the association’s communications consultant.
The Blockchain Association’s rapid growth has been tracked with great interest in pressure from the crypto industry, particularly in the wake of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s proposals to restrict trading with self-hosted wallets. About the troop surge, Newhall said, “We fill in the seams with things we’d like to do. It was a great get-together for the new members and the new team members.”
In addition to the responses to FinCEN, Hammond noted that the change in the presidential administration makes this a crucial time to engage with new decision makers. He said it aims to focus on “the big issues that were addressed from the previous administration,” namely, “securities and custody law, as well as taxes.”
Laws and regulations governing blockchain and cryptocurrencies have risen in public awareness, enabling those involved to get even more ambitious. According to Hammond, the new goal in financial regulation is “to ensure that the Blockchain Association not only has a seat at the table, but is, in fact, in some cases, leading the conversation.”
At the end of January, the Blockchain Association announced the addition of 5 new members, bringing the total support to 30 companies.