Keiko Yoshino describes her arrival to Puerto Rico as a whirlwind. Shortly after her arrival in June, she quit her job, signed a lease and began the Puerto Rico Blockchain Trade Association. And this week, only six months after launching the association at Bitcoin Miami, PRBTA is hosting its own events for Puerto Rico’s Bitcoin Week.
Just as Yoshino quickly found her place in Puerto Rico, she hopes to foster an inclusive blockchain community where “no one gets left behind.” She discussed her association’s goals with Roundtable, emphasizing the ways in which the association seeks to benefit Puerto Rico.
Unlike a traditional trade organization, Yoshino sees PRBTA as a space not to lobby for narrow industry interests, but to leverage crypto for the well-being of the community. The organization’s slogan, “Together We Rise,” captures that approach: it aims to promote blockchain in Puerto Rico in a way that also harnesses it as a democratizing force.
Yoshino hopes to leverage Puerto Rico’s critical mass of crypto innovators and ideas in order to create opportunity for the whole community. That involves attracting crypto innovators whose presence brings wealth to the island, incentivizes school growth and, ultimately, provides employment opportunities for Puerto Ricans.
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Since founding the organization with lawyer Giovanni Mendez, Yoshino has continued to develop PRBTA’s non-traditional vision. The organization continues to evolve, and the team plans to roll out PRBTA 2.0 in January. “It’s about bringing everyone to the table,” Yoshino says. “It’s not a specific interest of a small group of people. It’s about sharing the knowledge. It’s a space where we want to come together.”