37-year-old Jesse Sullivan is a Republican businessman that’s entering the race for the governorship of Illinois. Right now, the governor’s position is held by J.B. Pritzker, a billionaire and heir to the Hilton hotel fortune.
Sullivan Is Making a Run for Governor
What makes Sullivan so unique? He established a nonprofit organization that survived primarily thanks to cryptocurrency donations. Sullivan has worked primarily as a venture capitalist prior to entering politics. His company – known as Alter Global – ultimately made limited financial investments in different projects, but most of the company’s funding came by way of cryptocurrency.
The structure of this business changed in January of 2020. Sullivan made the company a for-profit LLC, and to this day, the firm has made more than two dozen investments. Records show that many of these investments have been in developing or third-world countries, though none have been made in Illinois.
In an interview, Sullivan described himself and his business as follows:
I’ve been a venture capitalist. The other one I would not list as venture capital. I’d list it as an entrepreneurial support organization or nonprofit.
Sullivan’s political campaign has managed to raise close to $11 million. Most of this money has come from out-of-state donors, and one of them hits a serious chord with crypto fans. Roughly $5 million in campaign funds were sent from Chris Larsen in California. Larsen is the chairman of Ripple Labs, the company behind the famed XRP cryptocurrency. Larsen allegedly boasts a personal net worth of approximately $6 billion.
Larsen issued a statement about Sullivan. He claimed to know him personally and that he was a fantastic “leader” and family man. He said:
He is an amazing leader and father — always ready to serve, always eager to listen and learn, and confident in his business and social convictions. He’s focused on technologies that can both solve the climate crisis and grow the economy and put Chicago in the rightful position as a top-five global financial center by embracing fintech and crypto. He’s a bridgebuilder to a more unified future.
Interestingly, only about $13,000 in campaign donations have come from Illinois residents. Also, Sullivan does not have a lengthy political background and has not made any political contributions himself minus one that occurred in June of this year, when Sullivan is believed to have given roughly $10,000 to the Illinois GOP fund.
Wanting to “Turn Things Around”
Sullivan says that it is his faith and family that truly keeps him going. He commented that he engages in a “lot of prayer” with his wife. He also said:
I decided I feel like my life experiences and background have led me to a place that I actually could help turn things around in the state of Illinois.
A native of Petersburg, Illinois, Sullivan holds a BA from St. Louis University and an MBA from Stanford.