Harry Weller, who has long led the East Coast venture practice of New Enterprise Associates from Washington, D.C., passed away unexpectedly last night.
Weller had joined the firm in 2002, not long after nabbing an undergraduate degree in physics from Duke University and an MBA from Harvard.
Neither his family nor NEA has released details of what happened; NEAjust issued the following statement, however:
We are deeply saddened to share that our partner and great friend Harry Weller passed away in his sleep on Saturday, Nov. 19.
A renowned technology investor, champion of innovation and true partner to entrepreneurs, many knew Harry to be bold, brilliant, and passionate. To those who knew him best, he was equally remarkable for his kind heart and generous spirit. Harry was a deeply devoted father, husband and friend.
We are deeply grateful to the many friends and colleagues who have reached out to express condolences and offer support. During a time of immeasurable grief, there is comfort in knowing how much he was loved, and that his tremendous impact will be felt for many, many years to come. His is a legacy to which we can all aspire.
Weller was recognized earlier this year by Forbes, which included Weller on its Midas List for the ninth year in row. (DCInno noted that Weller was the only VC in Washington to make the list, which also included well-known Silicon Valley VCs Marc Andreessen, Jim Goetz, and Bill Gurley.)
Known forhis quicksmile and relaxed demeanor, Wellers track record of success as a VC was long and included the marketing software company Eloqua, acquired Oracle in an $810 million deal in 2012;the event software company Cvent, which went public in 2013 was acquired earlier this year by the private equity firm Vista Equity; and the deals site Groupon, whose Series A round NEA led back in 2008; the company went public in 2011.
According to his profile page on NEA, Wellers greatest loves have long included his crazy kids, his cool wife, music, the Navy (where he served as a pilot before launching his business career), and surfing.
NEA also credits Weller for cofounding the firms 13-year-old China organization.