Steve Vassallo, General Partner
In his wallet, Steve Vassallo carries around the business card from his childhood snow-blowing business, a constant reminder that entrepreneurship is about grasping opportunity where you find it, even if your hands get cold and numb in the process. Of more recent vintage is the business card that identifies Steve as a venture capitalist at Foundation Capital, where he works with companies in the areas of cleantech, consumer, and software & services.
Steve serves on the board of directors of Aquion Energy, AutoGrid, Control4, Pocket, Refactored Materials, Sentient Energy, and SunRun. Steve also serves on the board of the Nueva School.
Before joining Foundation Capital in 2007, Steve helped launch Ning, a consumer Internet service where anyone can create their own social network. Prior to Ning, Steve was Director of Engineering at Immersion [IMMR], which pioneered the field of tactile feedback and human touch technology. Prior to Immersion, Steve was a project leader and design engineer at IDEO, where he developed more than a dozen successful products for market leading companies including Cisco, Nike, BMW, Steelcase, McDonalds, and Caterpillar.
An entrepreneur who lives at the intersection of business, technology, and design, Steve’s innovations have won him over 40 patents and several design awards, including the Business Week Design of the Decade Award, red dot 2009, IDEA99 Gold and Bronze Awards, NeoCon Gold and Most Innovative New Product Awards.
Steve earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University, and an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar.
When Steve is able to break away from brainstorming the next big idea, he enjoys building Lego robots with his three children and bicycling through the Silicon Valley foothills with his wife and best friend, Trae.
Steve Vassallo in the News:
Building Two Marshmallow Companies
Clean Tech Investing Shifts, With Lower-Cost Ventures Gaining Favor
Parents: Buy Kids' Legos, But Throw Away the Instructions