I don't think anyone really ushered in the ME mentality. Heck, what would a FAionist be w/o the ego to think that he/she can climb this or that piece of rock/mt? To some point, there's always the "ME" that drives things, whether it be climbing or anything else. Hate to sound like Ayn Rand here, but a lot of innovation/change in our world boils down to the passion and dedication of a single person. Why would climbing be any different?
Now whether that leads to an ethically worthy ascent or not, well, that's another argument?
Personally, I like the TEAM approach to climbing b/c I'm too weak and burdened by work and family to climb hard anymore