Writing

Twenty twenty
2020 turned out to have some great things in store for me


Published 26 days ago.

Rough start

I came into 2020 with lots of good intentions, only to have some of them smashed and get completely clobbered in other ways. March was by far the worst month for me this year. I was forced to cancel my conference, SuperConf, which was pretty lame. 

However, after I worked through one of the darkest times in my life, things started to move in a very positive direction.

QuikNode grew 1500%

I've mentioned QuikNode previously but never spoke at length about what we're building there. I joined QuikNode as a technical co-founder in 2019, founded by my long time friends Dima & Alex. I've been working on it in my free time since then. We managed to convince one of my best friends, Manuel to join as well this year! We've built out a service that is extremely valuable for anyone building on blockchain. 

Since we launched our API service in February, we've grown revenue 1500% and are now serving over 3b+ requests on our network. It's been insane to have what was essentially a hobby grow and have everyone from anonymous bedroom developers to multi-billion dollar corporations as customers.

I feel so honored and excited about this; it's a 2020 highlight for me.

First Round Capital

I was blessed with a huge opportunity earlier this year as well, the chance to work for one of the top 10 venture firms on planet earth: First Round Capital. I've been fortunate enough to account for a nice sized portion of the placements done by First Round for their community of companies in 2020. I feel proud to have helped revamp and re-orient the people managing software builders at First Round to be more effective using agile.

In the end, I thought I would spend years of my life working there, serving founders in various capacities, but the universe had different plans for me. 

QuikNode invested in by __

You may or may not guess this, but the growth in QuikNode experienced isn't exactly typical. We received quite a bit of interest from VCs, and we have agreed to be funded by __, one of the most successful VCs ever. We're so excited to be a part of this community and get access to brilliant partners.

That's all I can say here for now, but I'm feeling so lucky to work with my friends funded by really smart and helpful people.

Nathali granted permanent residence

My wife Nathali has been grappling with USCIS for close to half of a decade to retain stable status here in the U.S. and has finally been granted permanent residence. This is a massive weight off my shoulders because we no longer have to wonder or worry about immigration service making life unnecessarily difficult. The cherry on top is that she just passed her citizenship test and is due for naturalization in early 2021!

Bought my first property

I've been metaphorically long Miami for about a decade now, and this November, thanks to a tip from my good friend Jose, Nat and I were able to pick up a 1/1.5 condo a block from where I live on the (super) low. We're going to be remodeling it and moving in very soon.

This is a big step for me personally in adulting & I'm so hyped to have done it with Nathali!

Cryptocurrency resurgence

It's no secret that blockchain is here to stay. I think the future is built on blockchain and have lots of vested interest in the space via QuikNode and other personal holdings. While I'm excited by the recent price action, I'm REALLY excited by all of the cool things being built on or with blockchain.

#MiamiTech is a national thing now

I've been telling tech people to move to Miami since the beginning of the 2010s. I have not stopped beating that drum as I run a tech conference, help talented locals get hired by silicon valley companies, and help people relocate to Miami regularly. This year has had some serious action here. So much so I wrote about it on Refresh Miami.

I always feel honored when I'm able to be a part of my community and help people do extraordinary things, and growth in #MiamiTech is no different!

2021

When I first wrote this post, I looked back at my 2020 resolutions. I hit a few of them, made good progress on a few, and completely missed a few. It was a reminder that things seldom go as planned for me, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't have aspirations!

Writing this post has reminded me how luck and hard work can collide for big life blessings. To say I'm grateful is an understatement.

With that said, 2021 has me excited as there are vaccines on the way, things are going very well for me, and I've got some great resolutions to work towards:

  1. Grow QuikNode by 1300% or more
  2. Drop body fat to 12.5% or below
  3. Run 150 miles 
  4. Sleep an average of 8 hours each day (Thanks Brett + Matteo!)
  5. No soda for 364 days
  6. Run a badass SuperConf 
  7. Complete a Vipassana
  8. Head to Ibiza for all of July
  9. Spend Christmas in Puerto Rico with family

If I know you personally, don't hesitate to reach out to me and share your resolutions privately. I'll do my best to hold you accountable. Happy New Year!