Alexander Miles
  Elijah McCoy
  Lewis Latimer
  Jan Ernst Matzeliger
  Granville T. Woods
  George Washington Carver
  Madam C. J. Walker
  Garrett Morgan
  Dr. Charles Richard Drew
  Otis Boykin
  James E. West
  Dr. Patricia Bath
  Lonnie G. Johnson
Mark Dean

Famous African American Inventors

© IBM/AP Images

Mark Dean

(1957– )

Dean co-invented the personal computer, dramatically changing the way people work.

Background: Dean was born in Jefferson City, Tenn. As a child, he loved building things and did well at school. He graduated at the top of his class from the University of Tennessee.

Invention: After college, Dean worked for IBM as a computer scientist. He was one of the original inventors of the IBM personal computer and the color PC monitor. He is also responsible for creating the technology that allows devices, such as keyboards, mice, and printers, to be plugged into a computer and communicate with each other. Dean also managed the team that created the one-gigahertz processor chip. Dean continued to further his own education, pursuing a master's degree and eventually a doctorate from Stanford University.

Did You Know? Dean famously said in a 2011 blog post that he's switched to using a tablet.