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Famous North Carolina State University Alumni

Updated June 14, 2019 43.2k views51 items

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

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

List features Philip Rivers, Russell Wilson and more famous NCSU people. Go Wolfpack!

This list answers the questions “Which famous people went to North Carolina State University?” and “Which celebrities are North Carolina State University alumni?”

Take a look at this list of famous NC State alumni!
  • 1

    Zach Galifianakis

    Comedian, Pianist


    BirthplaceWilkesboro, North Carolina, USA


    Zachary Knight Galifianakis (; born October 1, 1969) is an American actor, comedian, and writer who came to prominence with his Comedy Central Presents special in 2001 and presented his own show...  more

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    #156 of 264 The Best (Male) Actors Working Today#492 of 1,017 The Best Actors In Film History

  • 2

    John Edwards

    Politician, Writer


    BirthplaceSeneca, South Carolina, USA


    Johnny Reid "John" Edwards (born June 10, 1953) is an American lawyer and former politician who served as a U.S. Senator from North Carolina. He was the Democratic nominee for Vice President in 2004,...  more

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    #2507 of 2,753 The Most Influential People of All Time#41 of 57 Celebrities Who Were Caught Cheating

  • 3

    John Tesh

    Film Score Composer, Journalist


    BirthplaceGarden City, New York, United States of America


    John Frank Tesh (born July 9, 1952) is an American pianist and composer of pop music, as well as a radio host and television presenter. His Intelligence for Your Life radio show airs on nearly 300...  more

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    #72 of 110 The Greatest Keytarists of All Time#1 of 19 Famous People You Didn't Know Were On 'Star Trek: The Next Generation'

  • 4

    Dean Kamen

    Businessperson, Entrepreneur


    BirthplaceRockville Centre, New York, United States of America


    Dean Lawrence Kamen (born April 5, 1951) is an American engineer, inventor, and businessman. He is known for his invention of the Segway, as well as founding the non-profit organization FIRST with...  more
  • 5

    Russell Wilson

    Athlete, American football player


    BirthplaceCincinnati, Ohio


    Russell Carrington Wilson (born November 29, 1988) is an American football quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the University of...  more

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    #284 of 299 The Hottest Men Of 2021, Ranked#1207 of 1,316 The Best Athletes Of All Time

  • 6

    Anthony James Barr

    Software Engineer, Entrepreneur


    BirthplaceNew York


    Anthony James Barr (born September 24, 1940), aka Tony Barr or Jim Barr, is an American programming language designer, software engineer and inventor. Among his notable contributions are the...  more
  • 7

    Tim Kirkman

    Screenwriter, Film Director


    BirthplaceMonroe, North Carolina, United States of America


    Writer and director Tim Kirkman was born in Monroe, North Carolina, the third child of a public school educator and a music teacher, and spent his childhood in nearby Wingate, North Carolina. He...  more
  • 8

    Jill Wagner

    Model, Actor


    BirthplaceWinston-Salem, North Carolina, USA


    Jill Suzanne Wagner (born January 13, 1979) is an American film and television actress, model, and game show personality. She was a co-host for the ABC comic competition show Wipeout from 2008 to...  more

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    #1 of 163 The Best Hallmark Channel Actresses#11 of 310 Hallmark Channel Actors and Actresses

  • 9

    Philip Rivers

    American football player


    BirthplaceDecatur, Alabama


    Philip Michael Rivers (born December 8, 1981) is a American football quarterback for the Los Angeles Chargers of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at North Carolina...  more

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    #25 of 120 The Best Quarterbacks Of All Time#52 of 119 The Greatest College Football Quarterbacks of All Time

  • 10

    James Goodnight

    Businessperson, Software Engineer


    BirthplaceSalisbury, North Carolina


    James Howard Goodnight (born January 6, 1943) is an American billionaire businessman and software developer. He has been the CEO of SAS Institute since 1976, which he co-founded that year with other...  more
  • 11


    BirthplaceRaleigh, North Carolina, United States of America


    Scott Cooke McCreery (born October 9, 1993) is an American country music singer. He won the tenth season of American Idol on May 25, 2011. His debut studio album, Clear as Day, was released in...  more

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    #144 of 200 The Best Male Country Singers of All Time#8 of 135 The Best American Idol Contestants Ever

  • 12

    Torry Holt

    American football player


    BirthplaceGibsonville, North Carolina


    Torry Jabar Holt (born June 5, 1976) is a former professional American football player who was a wide receiver in the National Football League (NFL) for eleven seasons. He was named to the Pro Bowl...  more
  • 13
    Raymond Thomas "Ray" Odierno (; born 8 September 1954) is a retired four-star general of the United States Army who served as the 38th Chief of Staff of the Army. Prior to his service as Chief of...  more
  • 14

    Spud Webb

    Basketball player


    BirthplaceDallas, Texas


    Anthony Jerome "Spud" Webb (born July 13, 1963) is an American retired professional basketball point guard. Webb, who played in the National Basketball Association (NBA), is known for winning a Slam...  more

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    #156 of 289 The Top NBA Players Of All Time#37 of 161 The Best NBA Players With No Championship Rings

  • 15

    Jim Hunt

    Politician, Farmer


    BirthplaceWilson, North Carolina, United States of America


    James Baxter Hunt Jr. (born May 16, 1937) is a retired American politician who was the 69th and 71st Governor of North Carolina (1977–1985, and 1993–2001). He is the longest-serving governor in the...  more
  • 16

    Jerricho Cotchery

    American football player


    BirthplaceBirmingham, Alabama


    Jerricho Cotchery (born June 16, 1982) is a former American football wide receiver who played in the National Football League (NFL) with the Carolina Panthers, New York Jets, and Pittsburgh Steelers...  more
  • 17

    Nate McMillan

    Basketball player, Coach


    BirthplaceRaleigh, North Carolina


    Nathaniel McMillan (born August 3, 1964) is an American basketball coach and former player who is the head coach for the Indiana Pacers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He coached the...  more
  • 18

    Adrian Wilson

    American football player


    BirthplaceHigh Point, North Carolina


    Adrian Lemar Wilson (born on October 12, 1979) is a former American football safety. He played college football at NC State, and was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the third round of the 2001...  more
  • 19

    Mario Williams

    American football player


    BirthplaceRichlands, North Carolina


    Mario Jerrel Williams (born January 31, 1985) is a former American football defensive end. He played college football for North Carolina State University, and was selected first overall by the...  more
  • 20

    Rajendra K. Pachauri

    Professor, Scientist


    BirthplaceNainital, India


    Rajendra Kumar Pachauri (born 20 August 1940) was the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and was replaced by Hoesung Lee. He held the post from 2002 until his...  more
  • 21

    Chris Dieterich

    American football player


    BirthplaceFreeport, New York


    Christian Jeffrey Dieterich (born July 27, 1958) is a retired American football player who played his entire career with the Detroit Lions from 1980 to 1986....  more
  • 22

    John David Hayworth, Jr.

    Politician, Journalist


    BirthplaceHigh Point, North Carolina, United States of America


    John David Hayworth Jr. (born July 12, 1958) is an American television host and former politician. He served as a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from 1995 to 2007...  more
  • 23

    Patrick McHenry



    BirthplaceGastonia, North Carolina, United States of America


    Patrick Timothy McHenry (born October 22, 1975) is the U.S. Representative for North Carolina's 10th congressional district. He is a member of the Republican Party. He was a member of the North...  more
  • 24

    Robert Gibbs

    Spokesperson, Strategist


    BirthplaceAuburn, Alabama, United States of America


    Robert Lane Gibbs (born March 29, 1971) is an American communication expert who is the executive vice president and global chief communications officer of McDonald's. He served as the twenty-fifth...  more
  • 25

    James Owens



    BirthplaceElizabeth City, North Carolina


    James W. Owens is an American economist and manufacturing executive. He is the former chairman and chief executive officer of Caterpillar Inc., the world's largest manufacturer of construction and...  more