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The former “The Mighty Ducks” actor turned crypto-enthusiast has given the New York City Police Foundation cash, advised Eric Adams on “all things crypto,” and given Adams a free private jet ride (which Adams claims he paid for).
- Child movie actor
- Failed presidential candidate
- Cryptocurrency investor
Brock Pierce, a former child actor of “The Mighty Ducks” fame turned crypto billionaire turned short-lived 2020 presidential candidate, seems down to meet with anyone to spread the gospel of cryptocurrency—from Steve Bannon and Yair Netanyahu, to Jeffrey Epstein and, you guessed it, Eric Adams. Pierce donated $2,000 to Adams’s 2021 mayoral campaign and $2,100 to his re-election campaign this year. (A second $2,000 donation he gave to Adams in 2021 was eventually returned by the campaign). But those are just pennies compared to the $100,000 he dropped into the coffers of a pro-Adams PAC that formed during his mayoral campaign.
Pierce says he met Adams in 2020 and soon became his informal adviser on “all things crypto,” in the words of Politico. Of the many candidates running for mayor, Pierce said, “Eric Adams was by far the best person to lead this city.” Pierce added, “He cares about surrounding himself with the best people in their areas of expertise…and he’s willing to embrace the future.”
It’s perhaps no surprise that Adams, who once promoted a rat-killing bucket while Brooklyn borough president, would embrace crypto—and the “best people” in that industry full of smart and talented people with good ideas naturally includes Pierce. Adams and Pierce were, at times, pictured together during the latter’s short-lived presidential run in 2020, and they were accompanied by their mutual friend William Benson, who ran a champagne company called Billionaires Row.
Here’s a video of Pierce having a titillating conversation with Adams and Benson, with Adams looking completely riveted:
After Adams met Pierce, Adams announced that as mayor, he would make New York a cryptocurrency hub. Pierce was chummy enough with Adams to be present at his victory party at Zero Bond (see our entry on Zero Bond’s owner Scott Sartiano), and a few days later, both Pierce and Adams found themselves on their way to SOMOS, the annual post-election gathering of New York’s politicians in San Juan, Puerto Rico. (Pierce has attended SOMOS multiple times, trying to press New York’s politicians to embrace cryptocurrency instead of trying to regulate it.)
Adams was initially coy about who paid for the trip he took down to Puerto Rico immediately after his general election victory in November 2021. “My dollar, my dime, and my time,” he told nosy reporters. But we don’t know if this is true—Pierce had flown Adams and his partner Tracey Collins there on his private jet. Adams maintained he paid for their seats on the jet, but never provided any receipts to that effect.
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While Pierce is most closely associated with Puerto Rico, which he’s dubbed “Puertopia” as part of an effort to boost the crypto industry there post-Hurricane Maria, he has also showered some of his wealth on New York City. In 2021, Pierce gave the New York City Police Foundation (the nonprofit that helps fund things for the NYPD that the City Council won’t) enough money to buy multiple video game trucks to help keep kids off the streets.
In a Bloomberg interview after Adams’s win, Pierce outlined a future where New Yorkers would receive government benefits in the form of crypto as a sort of “financial inclusion.”
“I think the sky’s the limit, the Empire State Building is the limit,” Pierce said. “Mayor-elect Adams isn’t even in office yet, this is an opportunity to just think about what is possible.”
So what was possible?
Once in office, Adams launched the Mayor’s Office of Innovation and Emerging Markets, a new City office with a nebulous and somewhat undefined mission to integrate technology into City government co-executive directed by another friend of the mayor, Denise Felipe-Adams.
“Blockchain itself is the way of the future for us, and the mayor is looking forward to tapping in,” Felipe-Adams told the MissTeenCrypto podcast in June 2022.
Adams himself appeared at a number of cryptocurrency-related events during his first year as mayor, including a “Security Token Summit” in New York City and a conference in Miami, attended by fellow Bitcoin booster Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, where Adams declared “it’s bringing life to what we could do.” .
Adams even pledged to take his first three paychecks as mayor in crypto. According to Hell Gate’s own calculations, which tracked the fluctuations of the crypto market, if Adams truly did convert his paychecks, which totaled around $30,000, and split them evenly between the two cryptocurrencies he said he’d invest in, he’d be down around $4,000 as of early December. Not the greatest return on investment! Lately, Adams has mostly fallen silent on the issue of cryptocurrencies.
Pierce did not return a request for comment from Hell Gate.
As for Pierce’s own returns on New York politics, the outcomes have been equally grim. A two-year proof-of-work bitcoin mining moratorium he rallied to defeat went into effect after Gov. Hochul signed in Nov 2022. Meanwhile, state Attorney General Tish James and federal prosecutors have spent much of the year hauling crypto investors to court as the crypto market has imploded. Pierce has now set his sights elsewhere—he’s currently trying to buy what’s left of Sports Illustrated.
- X (FKA Twitter)
- Adams traveled to SOMOS on crypto billionaire’s private jet | Politico New York
- Brock Pierce wants to educate New York lawmakers about crypto | City & State
- Eric Adams Flies Air Crypto | New York Magazine
- Party time with the NYPD: Brooklyn kids enjoy video game fun with the Finest | amNewYork
- The Man Helping Guide NYC Mayor-elect Adams’ Crypto Vision | Bloomberg
Last updated: 12/18/2023
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