Melissa Blades

Melissa is a Software Engineering Manager. Most recently at KnowBe4, she was responsible for leading her team to success, innovating cybersecurity solutions, and maintaining the ethos of continuous improvement. Her career in the tech industry spans seven transformative years, which saw her deftly navigate from an entry-level position to manager. Her ability to adapt, learn, and grow is evident in both her professional journey and in her personal endeavors. Passionate about lifelong learning, Melissa is currently deepening her understanding of her field by studying Computer Science through the MCIT program at the University of Pennsylvania. Melissa’s journey spans from the deck of the USS John F Kennedy as an electronics repair technician to a Manhattan law firm, and now, to the forefront of cybersecurity technology. This unorthodox path instilled in her a unique perspective that she leverages to inspire her team and innovate on the job.



Sailing New Seas: My Mid-Career Jump from Law to Tech

Her journey began aboard the USS John F Kennedy, where she served as an electronics repair technician. After law school and a Manhattan law firm for seven years, life interrupted, and following a personal hiatus, she found herself at a crossroads and wondering if it was possible to leave behind the field she spent so much time and money to enter, and start anew? Spoiler alert: It was. By leveraging her technical roots, Melissa Blades began anew in tier 1 tech support at a startup. Within seven years, she climbed the ranks to a engineering manager position in software engineering. Her story offers a roadmap for those who feel stuck in their current positions, illuminating the possibilities and practicalities of drastic career shifts.