Ellen Pao is a 7-year investment partner with the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. She is suing the firm, citing sexual harassment and gender discrimination.
In the complaint filed May 10 in San Francisco Superior Court (which is embedded below in its entirety), Pao claims that she was the victim of sexual harassment by Ajit Nazre, a former Kleiner Perkins investment partner who departed the firm late last year. When contacted today, a Kleiner Perkins spokesperson declined to detail the specifics of why he departed.
The suit also alleges that she, along with other female employees at the firm, were regularly left out of meetings held by the firm’s male partners and that she was unfairly passed over for promotions because of her gender and her response to Nazre’s advances. High profile Kleiner Perkins partners John Doerr, Ray Lane, Bing Gordon, Ted Schlein, Chi-Hua Chien, are among those named in the suit.
Her full complain is linked here. And here is a screenshot in which she details one of the many incidents to which she was allegedly subjected.
Who is the “Senior Partner” implicated in the complaint? Kleiner Perkins only lists one such person:
Former Vice President Al Gore is co-founder and chairman of Generation Investment Management, a partnership that is focused on a new approach to sustainable investing. He is also co-founder and chairman of Current TV, an Emmy Award-winning, independent cable and satellite television news and information network based on viewer-created content and citizen journalism. In addition, Gore is a senior partner with the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a member of the board of directors of Apple and senior adviser to Google.
A year prior to the incident involving Ellen Pao, a masseuse accused former Vice President Gore of demanding that she “release his chakra.” And a few weeks prior to that, Gore and his wife of 40 years, Tipper, filed for divorce.
Pao’s suit could snare more than Gore. John Doerr, a partner with Kleiner named in the suit, is also a major Democratic donor.