Otis Frank Boykin
Boykin was born in Dallas, Texas. He graduated as valedictorian of his high school and attended Fisk University after which he worked as lab assistant for Majestic Radio and TV Corporation where he rose in rank. He later worked for P.J. Nilsen Research Laboratories. After two years at Illinois Institute of Technology, he dropped out of the graduate programme due to difficulties with the tuition but was not hindered to pursue his interest in resistors.
In 1959, Boykin invented and patented a wire precision resistor that would become widely used in radios and televisions. He also later developed a cost-effective variable resistor that could withstand high temperature and pressure. This was useful for computers and guided missiles. The cost-effectiveness it provided made production cheaper and hence made devices more accessible for the US military and for commercial uses. In the early 1960s, Boykin filed a suit against his employer at Chicago Telephone Supply Corporation for patenting and taking credit for one of Boykin’s inventions. The suit was dismissed.
Boykin is most notably known for inventing the control unit of the pacemaker to be based on electrical impulses. At 61 years old and 26 patents later, Boykin passed away from heart failure.