SCons would not exist without a lot of help from a lot of people, many of whom may not even be aware that they helped or served as inspiration. So in no particular order, and at the risk of leaving out someone:
First and foremost, SCons owes a tremendous debt to Bob Sidebotham, the original author of the classic Perl-based Cons tool which Bob first released to the world back around 1996. Bob's work on Cons classic provided the underlying architecture and model of specifying a build configuration using a real scripting language. My real-world experience working on Cons informed many of the design decisions in SCons, including the improved parallel build support, making Builder objects easily definable by users, and separating the build engine from the wrapping interface.
Greg Wilson was instrumental in getting SCons started as a real project when he initiated the Software Carpentry design competition in February 2000. Without that nudge, marrying the advantages of the Cons classic architecture with the readability of Python might have just stayed no more than a nice idea.
The entire SCons team have been absolutely wonderful to work with, and SCons would be nowhere near as useful a tool without the energy, enthusiasm and time people have contributed over the past few years. The "core team" of Chad Austin, Anthony Roach, Bill Deegan, Charles Crain, Steve Leblanc, Greg Noel, Gary Oberbrunner, Greg Spencer and Christoph Wiedemann have been great about reviewing my (and other) changes and catching problems before they get in the code base. Of particular technical note: Anthony's outstanding and innovative work on the tasking engine has given SCons a vastly superior parallel build model; Charles has been the master of the crucial Node infrastructure; Christoph's work on the Configure infrastructure has added crucial Autoconf-like functionality; and Greg has provided excellent support for Microsoft Visual Studio.
Special thanks to David Snopek for contributing his underlying "Autoscons" code that formed the basis of Christoph's work with the Configure functionality. David was extremely generous in making this code available to SCons, given that he initially released it under the GPL and SCons is released under a less-restrictive MIT-style license.
Thanks to Peter Miller for his splendid change management system, Aegis, which has provided the SCons project with a robust development methodology from day one, and which showed me how you could integrate incremental regression tests into a practical development cycle (years before eXtreme Programming arrived on the scene).
And last, thanks to Guido van Rossum for his elegant scripting language, which is the basis not only for the SCons implementation, but for the interface itself.