Women in History -31 July

Stephanie Louise Kwolek (July 31, 1923 – June 18, 2014) was an American chemist, whose career at the DuPont company spanned over forty years.

She is best known for inventing the first of a family of synthetic fibers of exceptional strength and stiffness: poly-paraphenylene terephthalamide—better known as Kevlar.

For her discovery, Kwolek was awarded the DuPont company’s Lavoisier Medal for outstanding technical achievement. As of February 2015, she was the only female employee to have received that honor.

In 1995 she became the fourth woman to be added to the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

Kwolek won numerous awards for her work in polymer chemistry, including the National Medal of Technology, the IRI Achievement Award and the Perkin Medal.