Dean Kamen

President and CEO, DEKA Research & Development and Founder, FIRST



"Students who study STEM are the next generation of innovators and leaders."

Dean Kamen is an inventor, an entrepreneur, and a tireless advocate for science and technology. His roles as inventor and advocate are intertwined as his own passion for technology and its practical uses has driven his personal determination to spread the word about technology's virtues so to change the culture of the United States. As an inventor, he holds more than 440 U.S. and foreign patents, many of them for innovative medical devices that have expanded the frontiers of health care worldwide. Some noted inventions include: the UVARTM XTSTM System, an extracorporeal photophereisis device marketed by Therakos/ Johnson & Johnson, for treatment of T-Cell lymphoma; an prosthetic arm in development for DARPA to advance the quality of life for returning injured soldiers; the HydroflexTM surgical irrigation pump for C.R. Bard; the CrownTM stent, an improvement to the original stent, for Johnson & Johnson; the iBOTTM mobility device; and the Segway® Human Transporter.

Kamen was awarded the National Medal of Technology in 2000 for inventions that have advanced medical care worldwide, and for innovative and imaginative leadership in awakening America to the excitement of science and technology through the founding of FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), an organization dedicated to motivating the next generation to understand, use, and enjoy science and technology. Kamen was also awarded the Lemelson-MIT Prize in 2002, and was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in May 2005.

Favorite Inventors:

One of my favorites is Galileo. He was the perfect combination of a scientist and an inventor, and he gave us the road map to understand the world around us.

Favorite Inventions:

Igor Sikorsky's great innovation, the helicopter, is definitely a favorite. Helicopters not only mix neat physics with neat engineering, but they have also been used to save a lot of lives.

Why Do You Think Math & Science are so AWESOME

A kid who is excited about math and science today will be the innovator who cures cancer, or discovers new energy solutions, or invents the room-temperature superconductor. The students who dedicate themselves to the wonders and excitement of technology and innovation will not only have successful careers in the future, but will also change our world.

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