top of page

Presented by

Big Watt Digital logo
Black and Gold topography pattern

Thursday, November 2
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sioux Falls Convention Center​​​
Sioux Falls, SD

The SDBI is committed to educating the residents, business leaders, and government officials of South Dakota on the opportunities and developments happening in Web3, blockchain technology, digital assets, and artificial intelligence across many industries.


The SDBI Fall Symposium will feature speakers from many disciplines covering topics that will help attendees understand and learn how these technologies and innovations can and will impact the economic landscape of South Dakota.

Tickets: $125

  • 8:15 AM | Registration
    Get checked in and ready to begin the day.
  • 9:00 AM | Welcome & Keynote Speakers
    Exhibit Hall Welcome Barry Sackett | Managing Partner, Goosmann Law Firm and Chair of SDBI Keynote Speakers Prof. Carla L. Reyes | Assistant Professor of Law, SMU Dedman School of Law Prof. Charles W. Mooney Jr. | Professor of Law, Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania Topic: Overview of 2022 Amendments to the Uniform Commercial Code We will provide an overview of the 2022 UCC Amendments and give particular emphasis to the new Article 12 on controllable electronic records and a comparison with the treatment of those digital assets under the pre-2022 UCC.
  • 10:30 AM | Session 1
    Exhibit Hall Brigitte Piniewski, MD | Founder & CEO, BlockHealth LLC Taylor Otten, JD, MBA | Director of Strategic Optimization, Avera Health Topic: Data Capital: The Evolution of Generational Affluence in the Digital Age Throughout history, the precious resources of every era gave rise to the titans of their time - be it gold, oil or land. Today, the richest enterprises rely on foundations built not on materials but on data! However, buried beneath this narrative lies the untold story of grossly untapped potential, held back by the shackles inherent in our web2 framework. In this session, we will discuss how we can unleash the full potential of this digital age; empower each individual to contribute and shape intelligence that speaks directly to their unique needs. Transition with us from a world of slow-moving, error-riddled interpretations to one overflowing with swarms of timely, precise and personalized insights all natively monetized through web3. This isn’t just another tech evolution. It’s a revolution, ushering in the next pinnacle of societal wealth and prosperity. Rooms 1-2 Ben Wiener | CEO/Chairman, Benaiah Co. Topic: Demystifying Digital Currencies Digital assets and blockchain technology are emerging industries within the buildout of Web3. The adoption and development of these decentralized technologies are occurring at a faster pace than previous internet innovations. This presentation will walk through a brief history of digital assets and examine the current state of the market. Ben will share investment strategies, explore the different asset classes and touch on global and US regulation and legislative initiatives. The presentation will provide an overview on risk mitigation strategies for protecting digital assets and the role qualified custodians will play. Ben’s presentation is designed to be educational and help to provide an understanding on how to engage, navigate, and prosper within the digital asset and blockchain technology space today and into the future. Rooms 6-7 Dana Syracuse | Attorney, Fintech & Global Payments Practice of Paul Hastings Josh Boem | Partner, Paul Hastings LLP Kendra Haar | Of Counsel, Paul Hastings LLP Topic: Tokenization, Custody and Related Regulatory Issues Dana, Josh, & Kendra will discuss the regulatory landscape around tokenization and the manner in which states have come forth with solutions regarding tokenization and custody. They will also dive into the emerging federal legislation. Room 8 Nick Carmi | VP, Institutional Markets, Circle Internet Financial LLC Kyle Pickner | Public Trust Compliance Officer, Topic: Institutional Adoption in Digital Assets Digital assets have been gaining increasing attention and adoption in recent years, with more and more individuals and institutions exploring the potential benefits of investing in this alternative asset class. In this chat, we will explore some of the factors that have helped institutional adoption of crypto and discuss some of the steps that could be taken to increase the adoption of cryptocurrencies among institutional investors. We will also look at some of the potential pitfalls of institutional adoption of crypto and what has held back traditional finance from fully embracing this new asset class, along with the role that regulators and other stakeholders may play in the future.
  • 11:45 AM | Lunch
    A short break in the program to eat, network and get geared up for the afternoon.
  • 1:00 PM | Session 2
    Exhibit Hall Dr. José-Marie Griffiths | President, Dakota State University Jeremy Nichele | Founder, Big Watt Digital Topic: Pioneering Tomorrow’s Financial Infrastructure with Renewable Digital Asset Mining Co-Founder of Big Watt Digital, Jeremy Nichele, will join Dakota State University President José-Marie Griffiths for a fireside chat covering innovations in the blockchain and AI technology sectors and South Dakota’s role in becoming a future hub for these blossoming industries. Big Watt Digital is a sustainability focused, technology pioneer working to establish new economic engines for rural communities through the mining of Bitcoin. At our core we believe that Bitcoin companies can secure positive economic impact while promoting sustainable energy. Big Watt Digital’s flagship mining facility in Sully Buttes, South Dakota can introduce the state to its next, 100% sustainable industry. Rooms 1-2 Eric McDonald | CEO, CoinLion Topic: How Web3 Companies Power Crypto Trading In the blockchain era where digital assets are reshaping the global financial fabric, it's vital to peel back the layers of a leading crypto trading platform operating at the forefront of this revolution. This presentation offers a holistic overview of the intricate operations underpinning our Web3 company. We'll explore our stringent Know Your Customer (KYC) and Know Your Transaction (KYT) procedures, emphasizing the paramount importance of user verification in the blockchain domain. Our dedication to user security is further accentuated with the use of facial biometrics for authentication, providing a blend of cutting-edge technology and iron-clad security. Beyond mere user interactions, we delve into the nitty-gritty of how we safeguard crypto assets on the blockchain, fortifying them against potential adversities. Concluding, we shed light on our innovative strategies for integrating fiat currencies, illustrating the convergence of traditional finance with the blockchain realm. Journey with us through the complexities and groundbreaking innovations of a top-tier crypto trading platform in the blockchain ecosystem. Rooms 6-7 Kyle Pickner | Public Trust Compliance Officer, David Chachanko | Director of Administration, BitGo Topic: The Legal and Compliance of Crypto The regulatory focus on digital assets in the United States has increased dramatically over the last few years. The growth in retail and institutional adoption resulted in a rapid rise to new products and services, along with market capitalization and extreme volatility. Recently, we have witnessed a loss of trust, following a number of high-profile failures, frauds, scams, and mismanagement of customer funds. In this chat, we will discuss what is next for regulation in the U.S. and how we here in America catch up to the rest of the world in terms of regulating this new asset class.
  • 2:15 PM | Session 3
    Rooms 1-2 John T. Meyer | Founder, Leadmore Dan Klosterman | Founder, Staticflow Topic: A Fireside Chat on NFTs: The Hype, The Technology, and The Future For a 12 month window in 2021 to 2022 NFTs were the rage. Local entrepreneurs, John T. Meyer and Dan Klosterman, each had their own wins, losses, and incredible stories from their time working in the NFT space. But now what? Are NFTs dead? What happens next? John and Dan will sit down to answer these questions along with questions from the crowd about where we go forward from here in regards to NFTs. Rooms 6-7 Joe Santos, Ph.D. | Director and Professor of Economics in the Ness School of Management and Economics at South Dakota State University Brittany Kjerstad McKnight, J.D. | Assistant Professor of Business Law with the Ness School of Management and Economics at South Dakota State University Topic: Digital Social Contracts: Outside Money, Smart Contracts, and the Role of the Sovereign In this session, Ness School professors Brittany Kjerstad McKnight and Joe Santos probe the practical viability of central bank digital currency—a conceptual form of money—and smart contracts—agreements on digital applications that append blockchains. Brittany and Joe argue central bank digital currency and smart contracts are types of digital social contracts to which the state—the sovereign—is either an explicit or implicit party. Moreover, they argue these social contracts are, either in principle or in practice, incompatible with a crypto-asset financial system, which operates by design outside the purview of the state. ​ Money is a social contract, a means of payment we generally accept in exchange for goods, services, and debts. Empirically speaking, to its holder money is a fiat asset that typically takes the form of currency issued by the sovereign—think, U.S. Treasury coins and U.S. Federal Reserve notes—or credit balances issued by private intermediaries—think, checking- and savings-account balances. Currency issued by the sovereign is an example of outside money, a liability of the sovereign that maintains a positive net asset value inside the economy. Central bank digital currency is digitized sovereign-issued outside money. As such, central bank digital currency necessarily operates within the purview of the state. ​ Like money, a smart contract is a social contract, a self-executing and immutable digitized, decentralized agreement built on a permissionless, distributed-ledger technology—think, a blockchain. Empirically speaking, to its holder a smart contract is an agreement that typically includes a conditional promise to transfer distributed-ledger balances—think, crypto assets, an outside, quasi-fiat money. To its proponents, a smart contract, like the blockchain, exists outside the purview of a sovereign as the essential agent of contract enforcement, a proposition Brittany and Joe reason is practically untenable. Rather, the sovereign is an implicit party to a smart contract and, thus, the transfer of crypto assets the contract specifies. ​ In summary, in practice central bank digital currency and smart contracts are social contracts that are legally incompatible with what proponents of decentralized, permissionless, distributed-ledger technologies intend: namely, a peer-to-peer accounting technology absent third-party clearing intermediaries and the legal framework within which they operate. Room 8 Rafael Mojdan | Director, Minnesota Blockchain Initiative Bailey Belisario | Research Engineer, Dakota State University Danny McCabe | Co-Founder & CEO, Flexa Topic: Revolutionizing the World: The Global Impact of Blockchain Technology and its Applications ​ This presentation provides a forward-looking exploration of blockchain technology and its potential global impact. We delve into the advantages and disadvantages, showcasing the possibilities for innovation and collaboration across different sectors. By discussing challenges and limitations, we aim to offer a comprehensive perspective on how blockchain, including examples such as Bitcoin, could reshape our world.
  • 3:15 PM | Break/Snack
    A short break in the program to refresh, grab a snack and network.
  • 3:30 PM | Keynote Panel Discussion
    Exhibit Hall Ben Wiener | CEO/Chairman, Benaiah Co. Dr. José-Marie Griffiths | President, Dakota State University Dusty Johnson | United States Representative (tentative) Topic: South Dakota Advantage
  • 4:30 PM | Social
    Gather in the Exhibit Hall for a social hour to wrap up the day.



SDBI bronze B stylized icon

Managing Partner, Goosmann Law Firm


Assistant Professor of Law, SMU Dedman School of Law


Professor of Law, Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania

Welcome & Keynote Speakers

Session Speakers

Brigitte Piniewski PH photo final copy.jpg

Founder & CEO, BlockHealth LLC


Partner, Paul Hastings LLP

Nick Carmi .jpg

Vice President for Institutional Markets, Circle

J Nichele Headshot.jpeg

Founder, Big Watt Digital


Founder, Leadmore


Assistant Professor of Business Law at SDSU


Coming Soon


Director of Strategic Optimization, Avera Health


Partner, Paul Hastings LLP


Public Trust Compliance Officer,

Eric McDonald.jpg

CEO, CoinLion


Founder, Staticflow

Rafael Mojden.jpg

Director, Minnesota Blockchain Initiative


CEO, Benaiah Co.


 Of Counsel, Paul Hastings LLP


President, Dakota State University


Director of Administration, BitGo

Joe 2.jpg

Director and Professor of Economics at SDSU


Research Engineer, Dakota State University

1201 N W Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57104


Title Sponsor
Benaiah Co. logo
Speaker Sponsor
ZeroHash logo
Gold Sponsor
Snack Sponsor
bottom of page