dYdX Operations subDAO V2

Hi everyone,

Thank you to all those who reached out to Joanna and myself expressing interest in joining the dYdX Operations Trust as either a Trustee or Enforcer. It was fantastic to hear from all of you about your visions for the Trust, and it has been an extremely difficult decision given the highly talented and motivated community members who applied. Based on the interviews we conducted, we have now selected individuals who we believe strongly contribute to achieving 3 main goals:

1. Safeguarding DOT’s assets through established public reputation and past multisig experience

Given the large funding request of DOT 2.0, it’s imperative that both the Trustees and the dYdX community feel that the funds are in safe hands. Therefore, we considered the following factors in our decisionmaking.

  • Multisig experience: Individuals who have had experience working with multisigs specifically (Safe) to reduce the likelihood of error when sending/receiving funds.
  • Reputation: Individuals with an established reputation primarily throughout DeFi/crypto and secondarily throughout the dYdX ecosystem. This helps ensure that the cost of reputational damage from colluding and acting with malicious intent is more than the gain from stealing funds.

2. Fulfillment of DOT’s mandate through past DAO experience and contributions to dYdX

Trustees are responsible for making sure the mandate of DOT is fulfilled. As described in the proposal, this encompasses both technical and operational fields that are critical to ensuring the decentralization of V4. Therefore, Trustees who exhibit experience in either field in other DAOs and/or have demonstrated a good understanding of dYdX are in a great position to support the Operations Lead if needed, and are also able to evaluate the performance of the subDAO in executing its goals due to their knowledge and experience. To this end, we prioritized:

  • Crypto operations and/or DAO experience: Prior experience working in a crypto company and/or DAO setting and contributing to operational or technical domains.
  • dYdX Involvement: Having demonstrated a good understanding of dYdX and/or actively participated in discussions or proposals via dYdX community channels.

3. Geographical diversity for improved time zone coverage

Trustees are required to coordinate with the three contributors to the subDAO, who will be based in Europe, Asia or the Middle East and initiate and approve transactions in a timely manner. As a result, we have attempted to ensure the five trustees are based in timezones that align with, or share sufficient overlap with these three regions, while also avoiding concentrating trustees in one timezone. (This is also particularly important given that Joanna and Callen are both located in Australia, which is not the most convenient timezone to work with!)

While there is no perfect method of selecting individuals, ensuring individuals contributed to achieving the 3 goals mentioned above provided us with a guiding principle in this challenging decision. As always, we warmly welcome feedback on our choices below and encourage anyone with concerns to please raise them here so that we can better address them.

We are proposing to add the following individuals to the dYdX Operations Trust:


  1. Chaos Labs, LTD

Multisig experience: Chaos Labs has extensive experience with multi-sigs from their work across major DAOs.

Reputation: Chaos Labs is a well known economics security and risk management service provider that engages publicly with some of the largest DAOs in the space. Their reputation is directly tied to the services they provide.

Crypto operations and/or DAO experience: Chaos Labs’ customer base is primarily DAOs, providing services to major DAOs like Uniswap, Aave, Osmosis, BenQi, and GMX to name a few.

dYdX involvement: Chaos Labs has an extensive history contributing to dYdX through both the grants program, forum discussions, and proposals. Their most recent dYdX product was a parameter recommendation portal which focuses on optimizing dYdX risk parameters.

Timezone: IDT / UTC+3

  1. Francis Gowen (Fig) - Flipside Governance

Multisig Experience: Fig has extensive multi-sig experience from his work across major DAOs and internal operations.

Reputation: In addition to his own personal reputation in DeFi, Fig’s public reputation is linked to the public reputation of his employer of Flipside, a leading blockchain analytics, governance, and research firm.

Crypto operations and/or DAO experience: In addition to DeFi operational experience gained as part of the Flipside Team, Fig brings rich DAO experience and knowledge of best practices as a governance contributor to major protocols such as Aave, Optimism, Arbitrum, Osmosis, and Hop.

dYdX involvement: Fig recently launched his endorsed delegate profile and is an active contributor to discussion in the forums and endorsed delegate huddles.

Timezone: EST / UTC+4

  1. Christoph Sonn

Multisig experience: Chris has a deep understanding of multisig best practices as he leads Product at Safe, the same multisig wallet that DOT uses!

Reputation: In addition to his own personal reputation in DeFi, Chris’s public reputation is linked to the public reputation of his employer Safe, one of the most well-known crypto products.

Crypto operations and/or DAO experience: In his work at Safe, Chris has gained valuable and transferable operations experience in a DeFi context, including having previously established a legal entity similar to the structure used by DOT.

dYdX involvement: Chris is a long-time dYdX holder and a consistent and active voter in dYdX governance.

Timezone: CEST / UTC+2


  1. Joseph Axisa (ImmutableLawyer)

Unlike Trustees, the Enforcer is not on the multisig. As they must remain impartial, they will not collaborate closely with the contributors and Trustees as they carry out their duties. Instead, they are required to bring a high standard for oversight and accountability to the Trust from both an operations and legal perspective. For this reason, we prioritized previous professional experience and expertise in these areas.

Experience in Trusts: Joseph has previous experience advising clients in relation to Trusts and Trust management and has conducted continuous research in relation to using Trusts as the legal back-end structure for DeFi Protocols. This has naturally led to him attaining a clear understanding of the responsibilities that this role brings.

Crypto legal experience: Joseph is currently a Senior Legal Analyst at BCAS; a crypto-focused regulatory consultancy firm currently providing a myriad of services targeting centralized exchanges and decentralized protocols within the industry. Joseph has an outstanding level of expertise that will allow him to make informed and accurate assessments of the extent to which Trustees are acting in accordance with their mandate and upholding transparency with regard to their activities and any potential conflicts of interest.

dYdX involvement: Joseph is a well-known, active and dedicated contributor to dYdX who we believe is well-placed to represent the voice and interests of the community within DOT.

Timezone: CEST / UTC+2

Therefore, the full dYdX Operations Trust structure that we propose is:


  1. Joanna Pope
  2. Callen Van Den Elst
  3. Chaos Labs, LTD
  4. Francis Gowen
  5. Christoph Sonn


  1. Joseph Axisa

We would once again like to sincerely thank all community members who expressed interest in the Trustee and Enforcer roles and took the time to speak with us. It is clear that the dYdX community has a rich group of highly dedicated contributors who are all well-suited to acting as Trustees and Enforcers for any future subDAOs who opt for a similar structure to DOT.

We look forward to feedback from any and all community members on the chosen Trustees and Enforcers! Thank you in advance for your input.

Callen and Joanna