Elizabeth Stark

CEO and Co-founder

Elizabeth is a huge fan of open source, decentralized protocols. She taught at Stanford and Yale where her students studied peer-to-peer technology, privacy, open source software, and memes. She has been an active contributor to the bitcoin community, an advisor to startups in areas ranging from cryptocurrency to decentralized technology to AI, and is a fellow at Coin Center. She has a law degree from Harvard and is an avid listener of electronic music.

Olaoluwa Osuntokun

CTO and Co-founder

Olaoluwa received his B.S and M.S in CS from UCSB. During his graduate studies he focused on the field of applied cryptography, specifically encrypted search. Before he became an active contributor to the Bitcoin open source ecosystem, he spent three consecutive summers as a Software Engineering Intern at Google. These days, his primary focus lies in designing and building private, scalable off-chain blockchain protocols, such as Lightning.

Bryan Vu

VP of Product

Bryan got involved in the Bitcoin community after hearing about it on Google's economics mailing list in 2011. During nine years in management at Google, Bryan built high-performing teams in the AdSense, Google Apps and AdExchange businesses. Bryan was responsible for growing and managing over $500M in annual revenue. Prior to Google, Bryan was a Product Evangelist, Sales Engineer (ATG) and Enterprise Consultant (Trilogy).

Conner Fromknecht

Head of Cryptographic Engineering

Conner holds a B.S. and M.Eng. in CS from MIT, where he pursued a deep interest in applied cryptography, network security, and distributed systems. Prior to joining, he held a research position at MIT CSAIL for three years, designing decentralized PKIs and building practical lattice primitives for verifiable computing, and developed industry experience optimizing low-latency MPC protocols. Conner continues to explore research at the intersection of cryptography, MPC, and off-chain payment networks.

Alex Akselrod

Senior Bitcoin Engineer

Alex has been interested in digital currencies since he learned, too late, of David Chaum's DigiCash in 2000. He wrote one of the first HTLC prototypes in 2013. Alex's pet project is ESCHATON, cited in the LN paper, which describes peer-to-peer networks that allocate resources using off-chain micropayments.

Johan T. Halseth

Lightning Protocol Engineer

Johan has a M.Sc. in Computer Science from University of Bergen, specializing in Algorithms and Complexity Theory. Before focusing full time on Bitcoin, he was doing mobile development at Google, and has experience in embedded systems and machine learning. His main focus is making Lightning robust and efficient, enabling its use on mobile and embedded devices.

Tankred Hase

Lead Application Engineer

Tankred is a software engineer from Munich, Germany who loves working in open source. He co-founded, where he worked on making email encryption easier to use. Since then he’s been active in maintaining OpenPGP.js, the encryption library behind many webmail encryption products, built a PGP key server for automatic public key discovery, and generally loves tackling challenges around the usability of cryptography. When he’s not programming he likes to travel by backpack and explore foreign places and cuisines.

Bram Cohen


Bram is the creator of BitTorrent and founder of BitTorrent, Inc. He has has been a contributor to the bitcoin developer community and is working on a cryptocurrency protocol using proof of space over time. He likes to invent puzzles and is a published mechanical puzzle author.

Want to join the team?

Lightning Labs is hiring!