Our Pledge To You

The Basics of Bitcoin

The Basics of Blockchain & Bitcoin

March 1, 2018 | 6:30 – 8:30pm
1871 | 222 W Merchandise Mart Plaza, Suite #1212 (map)

Blockchain? Bitcoin? ICOs? You’ve heard the terms but you’re not exactly sure what it all means. Join us at 1871 for an in-depth discussion about these technologies and how they are changing the world around us.

Discussion Topics:

  • An overview of blockchain and cryptocurrencies, including the history and development of the technology
  • Learn why blockchain goes hand-in-hand with Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies
  • Potential uses of blockchain technology for business and government, applications with the ‘internet of things’ and supply chains and data storage/digital trust
  • Unexpected societal effects of these technologies


Chuck Mackie has 30+ years of experience in financial and technology markets. He currently serves as Contributing Editor at John Lothian News, Consultant at Maven Wave Partners, and Principal at Fathom Communication, where he specializes in adding depth and understanding in marketing strategy and communications for financial services and technology companies.  Linkedin



Rumi Morales is a pioneer in identifying and cultivating the emerging technologies that will define the future of finance. As Head of CME Ventures, she founded and led one of the most successful corporate venture capital units in financial technology, investing in the “tech that will become fintech.” An early specialist in digital currency, blockchain and distributed ledger technologies, Rumi is also a leading early investor in artificial intelligence, deep learning, predictive analytics, and quantum computing as they will affect the financial industry. A proven entrepreneur herself, Rumi established the Global Markets Institute during her tenure at Goldman Sachs, and also launched a leading economic research firm in Singapore. Currently based in Chicago, Illinois, Rumi is actively involved in that city’s burgeoning technology and entrepreneurial community, building upon Chicago’s long and important legacy of financial innovation. Rumi has presented onstage at major conferences globally, including Innovate Finance, CB Insights Future of Fintech, and Consensus, and has been featured on Bloomberg Television and Institutional Investor magazine. Institutional Investor also noted her as one the “most powerful dealmakers in financial technology” two years in a row, and Crain’s recognized her in their esteemed “40 Under 40” list.  Linkedin  

Jennifer O’Rourke serves as the State of Illinois Blockchain Business Liaison, where she focuses on supporting distributed ledger technology development throughout the state of Illinois and also serves as the Deputy Director of the Office of Entrepreneurship, Innovation & Technology at the Illinois Department of Commerce where she leads projects focusing on economic development throughout the State. O’Rourke is also the Director of Public Engagement at the Chicago Blockchain Center. Prior to this, O’Rourke held a number of strategic and market development positions in the financial services industry. Most recently, O’Rourke was with CME Group, serving as a Manager of Global Business Development where she was responsible for expanding CME Group’s presence in the developing and frontier markets. Previous to this, O’Rourke worked for Royal Bank of Scotland and Deutsche Bank based in London. O’Rourke serves as a member of the board of directors in the FinTech Incubator: Currency and volunteers as a mentor to the Chicago Innovation Awards Women’s Co-op Group. Linkedin

Colleen Sullivan is the Chief Executive Officer of CMT Digital Holdings LLC and has been a partner with the broader CMT Group for four years.  Ms. Sullivan is also a Co-Founder and Managing Member of Sullivan Wolf Kailus LLC, a boutique law firm based in Chicago, that specializes in hedge fund, private equity, venture capital, digital assets, and other alternative investment products.  Ms. Sullivan previously practiced in the Investment Funds and Derivatives group at Sidley Austin LLP and, at age 25, co-founded a company called iOptions Group LLC, which advised individuals with employee stock options how to hedge them with listed options.  Ms. Sullivan is co-author of a USPTO issued patent with respect to the iOptions hedging and monetization strategies.  Ms. Sullivan currently serves as co-chair of the FinTEx Chicago Legal and Regulatory Committee, is on the Advisory Board of Bloq Inc., and participates in various working groups with the Chamber of Digital Commerce. Linkedin

Jimmy Odom is the Co-Founder and CEO of Bit Capital Group, a blockchain security mining management company creating digital assets for enterprise clients. In addition to being a block miner and decentralist, Jimmy supports Chicagoland’s entrepreneurship community by managing the Blackstone Charitable Foundation’s Inclusive Entrepreneurship Challenge program. The BX Challenge provides grant capital to nonprofits building programs in the technology sector to support inclusive entrepreneurship throughout Chicago. Prior to founding Bit Capital Group, Jimmy served as Assistant Director to the State of Illinois Department of Central Management Services focusing on the state’s procuring policies along with serving as the Sr. Policy Adviser to the Illinois Department of Commerce of Economic Opportunity. Jimmy works with minority communities throughout the state to help create, develop, and grow entrepreneurs. Linkedin

Howard Tullman CEO, 1871 will begin the discussion with special opening remarks on Chicago’s role in Blockchain technology.




If you have questions about the event, click here.