Photo of Melissa Taunton

Melissa joined NEA as a Partner in 2015. She focuses on talent acquisition at the executive level across the NEA portfolio. Melissa brings broad operating experience from the technology and healthcare sectors, along with a passion for cultivating relationships, to seek out best in class people who will build life-changing companies that have global reach.

Melissa began her career in technology at Qualcomm (supply chain management), Hewlett Packard (global contract manufacturing strategy) and Netopia (strategic technology alliances). She then transitioned to healthcare, as President of Drip Drop, Inc. (an oral rehydration product for hospital and home use) and realized her passion for creatively improving human health and lives through access to technology solutions. She subsequently joined Khosla Ventures as an Operating Partner focused on finding the best people to advance cutting edge companies at the intersection of technology and life sciences.

Melissa was born in Durban, South Africa and came to the United States as a young adult. She was captivated by the fascinating opportunities and technology developments that she saw in US companies and consequently made the Bay Area her home base. Melissa attended the University North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated from the University of San Diego with an MBA (Summa Cum Laude) in finance and marketing, specializing in international negotiations.