Patsy O. Sherman
Birthplace: Minneapolis, Minn.
Stain blocker for fabric (Scotchgard™)—Chemist Patsy Sherman discovered an oil- and water-resistant fabric treatment quite by accident while working for 3M on a new kind of rubber. One day in the lab, an assistant spilled some of a test material on her (the assistant's) canvas shoes and wasn't able to wash it off. Intrigued, Sherman teamed up with colleague Sam Smith to develop what came to be known as Scotchgard™. (2001)