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Welcome to the first installment of The Digital Currency Council’s Thought Leader Series, presented here at Virtual Currency Today. The Manhattan-based association of lawyers, accountants and financial professionals in the virtual-currency economy, the Digital Currency Council provides training, certification and a client-referral platform to its membership, and helps those members get connected to new opportunities in the virtual-currency marketplace.

To see how small businesses are integrating bitcoin and other virtual currencies into their payments mix (and elsewhere within their companies), DCC CEO David Berger held the following question-and-answer discussion with Chris Werner, founder of Werner Business Law in Chicago. Werner’s boutique law firm is specifically focused on small-business clients, and Werner himself has been drawn to technology – a combination that has served him well in the Windy City, particularly when it comes to digital currencies.

“I began my career at a large national law firm where I was part of the commercial litigation group,” says Werner (pictured at left). “I represented Fortune 500 companies in large, complex commercial litigation matters. During the early part of my career, I also began to develop an interest in all kinds of new technology. I realized that most attorneys were intimidated by new technology — and therefore avoided it both in terms of advising clients and implementing it for their practices.

“I have taken my early experience and now apply it in a boutique setting that allows me to provide sophisticated business legal advice in a way that’s accessible to a wider audience. I also have the freedom to explore an

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