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Famous Columbia University Alumni

Updated November 10, 2020 69.4k views81 items

List RulesPeople on this list must have gone to Columbia University and be of some renown.

List of famous alumni from Columbia University, with photos when available. Prominent graduates from Columbia University include celebrities, politicians, business people, athletes and more. This list of distinguished Columbia University alumni is loosely ordered by relevance, so the most recognizable celebrities who attended Columbia University 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 Columbia University.

This list includes Barack Obama, Alicia Keys and more notable Columbia alumni and famous Columbia Lions.

This list answers the questions “Which famous people went to Columbia University?” and “Which celebrities are Columbia University alumni?”
  • Barack Obama1

    Barack Obama

    Politician, Author


    BirthplaceArea code 808, Honolulu County, Hawaiian Islands, United States of America, United States

    Barack Hussein Obama born August 4, 1961is an American attorney and politician who served as...  more

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  • J. D. Salinger2

    J. D. Salinger

    Soldier, Novelist

    AgeDec. at 91 (1919-2010)

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York

    Jerome David Salinger (; January 1, 1919 – January 27, 2010) was an American writer known for...  more

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  • Katie Holmes3

    Katie Holmes

    Model, Actor


    BirthplaceToledo, Ohio, United States of America

    Kate Noelle Holmes (born December 18, 1978) is an American actress, producer, and director....  more

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  • Jake Gyllenhaal4

    Jake Gyllenhaal

    Film Producer, Actor


    BirthplaceLos Angeles, California, United States of America

    Jacob Benjamin Gyllenhaal (born December 19, 1980) is an American actor. Born into the...  more

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  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt5

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt

    Theatrical producer, Entrepreneur


    BirthplaceLos Angeles, California, United States of America

    Joseph Leonard Gordon-Levitt (born February 17, 1981) is an American actor, filmmaker, singer,...  more

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  • Anna Paquin6

    Anna Paquin

    Film Producer, Actor


    BirthplaceWinnipeg, Canada

    Anna Hélène Paquin ( PAK-win; born 24 July 1982) is a New Zealand-Canadian actress. She was...  more

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  • Stanley Kubrick7

    Stanley Kubrick

    Film Producer, Screenwriter

    AgeDec. at 71 (1928-1999)

    BirthplaceNew York City, Area code 917, Contiguous United States, New York, United States of America

    Stanley Kubrick (; July 26, 1928 – March 7, 1999) was an American film director, screenwriter,...  more

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  • Anthony Perkins8

    Anthony Perkins

    Musician, Actor

    AgeDied at 60 (1932-1992)

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, USA

    Anthony Perkins (April 4, 1932 – September 12, 1992) was an American actor and singer. He was...  more

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  • Amanda Peet9

    Amanda Peet

    Actor, Voice acting


    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, USA

    Amanda Peet (born January 11, 1972) is an American actress. After studying at Columbia...  more

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  • Alicia Keys10

    Alicia Keys

    Record producer, Pianist


    BirthplaceHell's Kitchen, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Alicia Augello Cook (born January 25, 1981), known professionally as Alicia Keys, is an ...  more

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  • Alan Greenspan11

    Alan Greenspan

    Businessperson, Politician


    BirthplaceManhattan, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Alan Greenspan (; born March 6, 1926) is an American economist who served as Chair of the...  more

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  • Maggie Gyllenhaal12


    BirthplaceLower East Side, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Margalit Ruth "Maggie" Gyllenhaal (; born November 16, 1977) is an American actress and...  more

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  • Allen Ginsberg13

    Allen Ginsberg

    Film Score Composer, Poet

    AgeDec. at 71 (1926-1997)

    BirthplaceNewark, New Jersey, United States of America

    Irwin Allen Ginsberg (; June 3, 1926 – April 5, 1997) was an American poet, philosopher and...  more

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  • Joe Horowitz14

    Joe Horowitz

    A veteran venture capitalist, Joe joined JAFCO Ventures as the Managing General Partner in...
  • Rajnesh Domalpalli15

    Rajnesh Domalpalli

    Screenwriter, Film Editor

    BirthplaceChennai, India

    Rajnesh Domalpalli is an Indian film director, from Andhra Pradesh. His first directorial...  more
  • Julia Stiles16

    Julia Stiles

    Television director, Screenwriter


    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Julia O'Hara Stiles (born March 28, 1981) is an American actress. Born and raised in New York...  more

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  • Robert J. Darnall17
    Robert J. Darnall formerly served as Chief Executive Officer and President of Inland Steel...  more
  • Jenna Morasca18

    Jenna Morasca

    Wrestler, Model


    BirthplacePittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States of America

    Jenna Morasca (born February 15, 1981) is an American actress, former swimsuit model and...  more

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  • Raymond Burr19

    Raymond Burr

    Television director, Actor

    AgeDec. at 76 (1917-1993)

    BirthplaceNew Westminster, Canada

    Raymond William Stacy Burr (May 21, 1917 – September 12, 1993) was a Canadian American actor,...  more

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  • Hunter S. Thompson20

    Hunter S. Thompson

    Journalist, Novelist

    AgeDec. at 68 (1937-2005)

    BirthplaceLouisville, Kentucky, United States of America

    Hunter Stockton Thompson (July 18, 1937 – February 20, 2005) was an American journalist and...  more

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  • James F. Albaugh21
    James F. Albaugh is the former Executive Vice President of The Boeing Company and Chief...  more
  • Rachel Williams22

    Rachel Williams

    Model, Actor


    BirthplaceNew York City, USA, New York

    Rachel Williams (born April 29, 1967) is an American model, TV presenter, and landscape...  more
  • Emmy Rossum23

    Emmy Rossum

    Songwriter, Actor


    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Emmanuelle Grey Rossum (born September 12, 1986) is an American actress, television director,...  more

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  • Famke Janssen24

    Famke Janssen

    Film Producer, Model


    BirthplaceAmstelveen, Netherlands

    Famke Beumer Janssen (Dutch: [ˈfɑmkə ˈjɑnsə(n)]; born c. 1964) is a Dutch actress, director,...  more

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  • David Rockefeller25

    David Rockefeller

    Statesman, Businessperson

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    David Rockefeller (June 12, 1915 – March 20, 2017) was an American banker who served as...  more

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