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Famous Canisius College Alumni

Updated October 13, 2018 5.5k views47 items

List RulesPeople on this list must have gone to Canisius College and be of some renown.

List of famous alumni from Canisius College, with photos when available. Prominent graduates from Canisius College include celebrities, politicians, business people, athletes and more. This list of distinguished Canisius College alumni is loosely ordered by relevance, so the most recognizable celebrities who attended Canisius College are at the top of the list. This directory is not just composed of graduates of this school, as some of the famous people on this list didn't necessarily earn a degree from Canisius College.

This is a list that features graduates like Beth Phoenix and John Axford.

This list answers the questions “Which famous people went to Canisius College?” and “Which celebrities are Canisius College alumni?”
  • 1

    Beth Phoenix



    BirthplaceUSA, New York, Elmira

    Elizabeth Copeland (née Kociański) (born November 24, 1980) is an American professional wrestler and color commentator, better known by her ring name Beth Phoenix. She is currently signed to WWE and...  more
  • 2

    Alex R. Dzierba

    Physicist, Professor


    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York

  • 3

    Bill Paxon



    BirthplaceAkron, New York, United States of America

    Leon William Paxon (born April 29, 1954) is a lobbyist and former member of the United States House of Representatives from New York....  more
  • 4
    Dennis F. Strigl (born April 13, 1946) is the retired President and Chief Operating Officer of Verizon Communications, responsible for operations at Verizon Telecom, Verizon Wireless and Verizon...  more
  • 5

    Dick Poillon

    American football player

    AgeDec. at 74 (1920-1994)

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York

    Richard Charles Poillon (August 13, 1920 – November 14, 1994) was an American football halfback in the National Football League (NFL) for the Washington Redskins. He scored a career 247 points and...  more
  • 6

    John J. LaFalce



    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York, United States of America

    John Joseph LaFalce (born October 6, 1939) is a former congressman from the state of New York; he served from 1975 to 2003. LaFalce was first elected to the 94th United States Congress in 1974 and...  more
  • 7

    Mary Wittenberg



    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York

    Mary Wittenberg (née Robertson) is an American sports executive. She is currently President of the EF Education First cycling team. She was previously the President and Chief Executive Officer of...  more
  • 8

    Elaine Sciolino

    Journalist, Writer

    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York

    Elaine Sciolino is an author and contributing writer of The New York Times, writing from France since 2002....  more
  • 9


    BirthplaceCazenovia, New York, USA

    Anne W. Burrell (born September 21, 1969) is an American chef, television personality, and former instructor at the Institute of Culinary Education. She is the host of the Food Network show Secrets...  more

    More Anne Burrell 

    #17 of 38 Celebrity Chefs You Most Wish Would Cook for You#110 of 125 The Worst People in the History of Reality TV

  • 10


    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York, United States of America

    Anthony M. Masiello (born April 28, 1947) was Mayor of Buffalo, New York from 1994 to 2005. Prior to being mayor, he served as a New York State Senator....  more
  • 11

    Paul G. Bulger

    Dr. Paul Grutzner Bulger (July 25, 1913 - February 8, 2000) was the third president of Buffalo State College (State University of New York, College at Buffalo), serving from July 1, 1959 until...  more
  • 12

    Michael Scheuer

    Historian, Professor


    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York

    Michael F. Scheuer (born 1952) is a former intelligence officer for the Central Intelligence Agency, American blogger, author, foreign policy critic, and political analyst. He was an adjunct...  more
  • 13

    Denise O'Donnell

    Denise O'Donnell is an attorney and Democratic politician from Buffalo, New York. She has served as director of the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), as New York State Commissioner of Criminal...  more
  • 14

    Tommy Colella

    American football player

    AgeDec. at 73 (1918-1992)

    BirthplaceAlbion, New York

    Thomas Anthony Colella (July 3, 1918 – May 15, 1992) was an American football halfback and punter in the National Football League (NFL) and All-America Football Conference (AAFC) for the Detroit...  more
  • 15

    Henry J. Nowak

    Politician, Lawyer


    BirthplaceBuffalo–Niagara Falls metropolitan area, Contiguous United States, New York, United States of America, United States

    Henry James Nowak (born February 21, 1935) is an American politician and a former Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives from New York between 1975 and 1993....  more
  • 16
    Michael Meeks (born February 23, 1972) is a Canadian former professional basketball player. Meeks currently work as assistant coach in S.Oliver Baskets. He is a former member of the Canadian national...  more
  • 17
    John Joseph McCarthy (born April 25, 1934) is an American former basketball player and coach. A 6'1" guard, he played college basketball and was an All-American at Canisius College. He was selected...  more
  • 18

    Andrew Anderson

    Andrew Emil Anderson (born July 6, 1945) is a retired American basketball player. He played collegiately for Canisius College. He was selected by the Boston Celtics in the 8th round (88th pick...  more
  • 19

    Michael Liebel, Jr.

    Michael Liebel Jr. (December 12, 1870 – August 8, 1927) was the Mayor of Erie, Pennsylvania, from 1906-1911, and a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives from Pennsylvania,...  more
  • 20
    Michael Frank Smrek (born 31 August 1962) is a Canadian retired professional basketball player. He was the top pick in the 2nd round of the Portland Trail Blazers in the 1985 NBA draft, and played...  more
  • 21

    Peter Hans Kolvenbach

    Peter Hans Kolvenbach (30 November 1928 – 26 November 2016), was the twenty-ninth Superior General of the Society of Jesus, the largest male Catholic religious order....  more
  • 22

    Calvin Darden


    BirthplaceBuffalo, New York

    Calvin (Cal) Darden served as Senior Vice President of U.S. Operations of United Parcel Service Inc. from 1998 to March 31, 2005. Mr. Darden joined United Parcel Service Inc. in 1971 as a part-time...
  • 23

    Bhaktisvarupa Damodar Swami


    AgeDec. at 68 (1937-2006)

    BirthplaceManipur, India

    Srila Bhaktisvarupa Damodara Swami Maharaja (9 December 1937 – 2 October 2006), also known as Dr. Thoudam Damodara Singh, was a Gaudiya Vaishnava spiritual leader, scientist, writer and poet. In 1971...  more
  • 24

    Dan Carey

    Daniel Carey may refer to: Daniel Carey (physician) (born 1960), cardiologist and health secretary to Virginia governor Ralph Northam Dan Carey (lacrosse) (born 1982), lacrosse player for the...  more
  • 25

    Richard Jacob

    Richard L. Jacob Ph.D. (born September 24, 1958, in Niagara Falls, New York), is a sports coach and educator. He was head coach of Buffalo's Professional Basketball Team Buffalo Rapids from 2005...  more
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List Rules: People on this list must have gone to Canisius College and be of some renown.