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Faces of HPC: Mark E. Dean

Mark Dean is an American inventor and Computer Engineer and is the first African American to become an IBM fellow; he has invented three out of nine IBM's patents when creating the first Personal Computer, the first colour PC monitor being one of them.


Mark Dean was CTO for IBM Middle East and Africa as well as an IBM Vice President. Dean holds more than 20 patents, 3 of which are associated with the first IBM PC, which led him to the honour of being an IBM Fellow. Despite his success, following his time at IBM Dean decided to continue his education, obtaining a PhD from Stanford University in 1992.


Mark Dean was born in March of 1957, in Jefferson City, Tennessee. An excellent student in school, Dean was keen on athletics. As a child, he built a tractor from scratch with his father. Dean completed his bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering at The University of Tennessee, graduating in 1979.

In 1980, he joined IBM and invented three of the nine patents associated with the first Personal Computer. One of them was the first colour PC monitor. However, Dean decided to continue his education and obtained his PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford University in 1992.

Mark Dean also developed, with the help of Dennis Moeller, the new Industry Standard Architecture system bus. This bus allows peripheral devices such as printers, monitors and disk drives to be connected directly to a computer. He also invented the first gigahertz chip that can make billions of calculations per second in 1999. His name is associated with at least 20 patents in total.

Dean was named Black Enginner of the Year in 1997 and 2000. He is also the first and only African American person to be an IBM Fellow, the highest technical honour of the company, and he is vice president for hardware and systems architecture in IBMS's Systems and Technology Group.



Last updated: 27 Jun 2016 at 13:56