With the recent announcement of a passing of the torch for the Executive Director role at the Gitcoin Foundation, I wanted to take a moment to create some clarity on what I’m seeing as an emerging structure at the DAO.

This post is intended to be a follow up to Kevin Owocki’s Consent of the Governed post that was released soon after the formation of the DAO. While much of what is the post still stands, there are a few key clarifications that I think are worth flagging for the purpose of building context for Citizens and Stewards.

Elements of this post will also be integrated into a follow-up post to our Gov3 post/a newly developed Gitcoin Working Constitution.


Gitcoin as a DAO was formed in mid-2021. In order to create the DAO, Gitcoin had to appoint an Executive Director for the Gitcoin Foundation. At that time, Kyle Weiss was given that role and has owned that responsibility until recently.

Soon after the launch of the DAO, Kevin Owocki created the aforementioned post that starts by defining the idea of the Consent of the Governed:

[quote="owocki, post:1, topic:9778"] the phrase consent of the governed refers to the idea that a government’s legitimacy and moral right to use state power is justified and lawful only when consented to by the people or society over which that political power is exercised. [/quote]

It then goes on to list differences between how an organization like Meta structures itself vs. how a DAO like Gitcoin structures itself to create legitimacy by empowering users and contributors to create bottoms-up buy-in.

At the core of the post is a principle that still stands true at Gitcoin:

[quote="owocki, post:1, topic:9778"] Legitimacy should flow in circles, not just one way [/quote]

In order to minimize confusion, I will not repost any diagrams from the initail post—readers can take a look at themselves to get a sense of what the initial vision for governing the DAO was at inception.

Shifting Structure

Though initial vision might have been a bit ambitious, the structure we’ve landed on is not too far off from the ideal set in Jan 2022.

Here is a shot at visualizing how (I am seeing) legitimacy currently flowing at Gitcoin: