Fellows Directory

Trae Vassallo

Defy Partners

Trae co-founded Defy Partners in 2016. The firm's first fund closed in 2017 at $151M.

Trae was previously a Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. She joined the firm in 2002 and put her technical and entrepreneurial background to work with companies in two main areas of focus: consumer internet and greentech, specializing in smart grid and efficiency opportunities. Trae worked closely with the management teams of OPOWER, a customer engagement platform for utilities that drives cost-effective energy efficiency savings; Stealth Efficiency Co., a new consumer efficiency company coming to residences soon; RecycleBank, a green rewards and loyalty network; Altarock Energy, a geothermal development company; Fisker Automotive, an extended electric luxury automotive company; and Aggregate Knowledge, a data-management and ad-optimization platform. Trae helped sell Ausra, a utility-scale solar thermal development company, to Areva in 2010.

Prior to KPCB, Trae was a co-founder of Good Technology, a KPCB portfolio company (acquired by Motorola) that provides an end-to-end wireless corporate email solution. While at Good, Trae helped orchestrate the development of the G100 handheld device. Earlier, Trae worked as a design engineer at IDEO Product Development where she developed a range of products including the PalmV, the Dell Latitude Docking station and many others. Trae holds 13 patents.

Education, Personal, and Fellowship

Trae earned a Bachelor's and Master's in mechanical engineering, with Honors, from Stanford University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Trae is passionate about new technology, good design and spending time with her husband, Steve, and two children.

Trae served her fellowship at KPCB as a member of Class 10 under the mentorship of John Doerr.