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The University of Tennessee College of Engineering presented its most prestigious award, the Nathan W. Dougherty Award, to Dr. Mark Dean at its honors banquet on Tuesday, April 12.

Dr. Mark Dean

The event, sponsored by Eastman Chemical Company, is held annually to recognize outstanding faculty, staff, students and alumni.

A COE alumnus, Dean is vice president at IBM and lab director of IBM’s Almaden Research Center in San Jose, Calif., received the Dougherty Award.

His invention of the Industry Standard Architecture “bus” permitted add-on devices such as keyboards, disk drives and printers to connect with a motherboard. The invention earned him election into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 1997. Dean was only the third African-American to receive that honor.

Dean was named “Black Engineer of the Year- in 1997 and 2000. In 1995, he was appointed as an IBM Fellow, IBM-s highest technical honor. He has received 13 Invention Achievement Awards and six Corporate Awards. He also was honored with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Ronald H. Brown American Innovator Award.

Overall, Dean holds more than 40 patents. In 2000, U.S. News & World Report named him one of the “Innovators of the 21st Century.”

Dean received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the UT College of Engineering in 1979.

The Dougherty Award is given to an individual whose professional engineering practice has advanced the field and brought honor and distinction to the college. The award is named in honor of UT graduate Nathan Dougherty who served as COE dean from 1916 to 1946. During his tenure, the college launched its doctoral program and began many of the cooperative research relationships that still exist today between UT and other entities.