Famous People From Louisville

List of famous people from Louisville, including photos when available. The people below are listed by their popularity, so the most recognizable names are at the top of the list. Some of the people below are celebrities born in Louisville, while others are simply notable locals. If you're from Louisville you might already know that these prominent figures are also from your hometown, but some of the names below may really surprise you. This list includes people who were born and raised in Louisville, as well as those who were born there but moved away at a young age.

List includes Percy Parsons, Henry C. McDowell, Jr. and more.

If you want to answer the questions, "Which famous people are from Louisville?" or "Which celebrities were born in Louisville?" then this list is a great resource for you.
Ranked by
    • Birthplace: Louisville, Kentucky, USA
    Jennifer Shrader Lawrence (born August 15, 1990) is an American actress. Her films have grossed over $6 billion worldwide, and she was the highest-paid actress in the world in 2015 and 2016. Lawrence appeared in Time's 100 most influential people in the world list in 2013 and in the Forbes Celebrity 100 list in 2014 and 2016. During her childhood, Lawrence performed in church plays and school musicals. At age 14, she was spotted by a talent scout while vacationing in New York City with her family. Lawrence then moved to Los Angeles and began her acting career by playing guest roles in television shows. Her first major role came as a main cast member on the sitcom The Bill Engvall Show (2007–2009). Lawrence made her film debut in a supporting role in the drama Garden Party (2008), and had her breakthrough playing a poverty-stricken teenager in the independent drama Winter's Bone (2010). She achieved wider recognition for her starring role as the mutant Mystique / Raven Darkhölme in the X-Men film series (2011–2019). Lawrence's career progressed with her starring role as Katniss Everdeen in the Hunger Games film series (2012–2015), which established her as the highest-grossing action heroine of all time. She went on to earn accolades for her collaborations with director David O. Russell. Her performance as a depressed young widow in the romance film Silver Linings Playbook (2012) earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress, making her the second-youngest winner of the award. Lawrence subsequently won a BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for playing a troubled wife in the black comedy American Hustle (2013). She also received Golden Globe Awards for her roles in both of these films, and for her lead performance as Joy Mangano in the biopic Joy (2015). She has since starred in the science fiction romance Passengers (2016), the psychological horror film Mother! (2017), and the spy thriller Red Sparrow (2018). Lawrence is an outspoken feminist and has advocated for Planned Parenthood. In 2015, she founded the Jennifer Lawrence Foundation, which has advocated for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and the Special Olympics. She formed the production company Excellent Cadaver in 2018.
  • Muhammad Ali
    Dec. at 74 (1942-2016)
    • Birthplace: Louisville, Kentucky, USA
    Muhammad Ali (born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr.; January 17, 1942 – June 3, 2016) was an American professional boxer, activist, and philanthropist. Nicknamed "The Greatest," he is widely regarded as one of the most significant and celebrated sports figures of the 20th century and as one of the greatest boxers of all time. Ali was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, and began training as an amateur boxer at age 12. At 18, he won a gold medal in the light heavyweight division at the 1960 Summer Olympics, and turned professional later that year. He converted to Islam and became a Muslim after 1961, and eventually took the name Muhammad Ali. He won the world heavyweight championship from Sonny Liston in a major upset at age 22 in 1964. In 1966, Ali refused to be drafted into the military, citing his religious beliefs and opposition to the Vietnam War. He was arrested, found guilty of draft evasion, and stripped of his boxing titles. He appealed the decision to the Supreme Court, which overturned his conviction in 1971, but he had not fought for nearly four years and lost a period of peak performance as an athlete. His actions as a conscientious objector to the war made him an icon for the larger counterculture generation, and he was a high-profile figure of racial pride for African Americans during the civil rights movement. As a Muslim, Ali was initially affiliated with Elijah Muhammad's Nation of Islam (NOI). He later disavowed the NOI, adhering to Sunni Islam, and supporting racial integration like his former mentor Malcolm X. Ali was a leading heavyweight boxer of the 20th century, and he remains the only three-time lineal champion of that division. His joint records of beating 21 boxers for the world heavyweight title and winning 14 unified title bouts stood for 35 years. Ali is the only boxer to be named The Ring magazine Fighter of the Year six times. He has been ranked the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time, and as the greatest athlete of the 20th century by Sports Illustrated, the Sports Personality of the Century by the BBC, and the third greatest athlete of the 20th century by ESPN SportsCentury. He was involved in several historic boxing matches and feuds, most notably his fights with Joe Frazier, such as the Thrilla in Manila, and his fight with George Foreman known as The Rumble in the Jungle which has been called "arguably the greatest sporting event of the 20th century" and was watched by a record estimated television audience of 1 billion viewers worldwide, becoming the world's most-watched live television broadcast at the time. Ali thrived in the spotlight at a time when many fighters let their managers do the talking, and he was often provocative and outlandish. He was known for trash-talking, and often free-styled with rhyme schemes and spoken word poetry, anticipating elements of hip hop.Outside the ring, Ali attained success as a musician, where he received two Grammy nominations. He also featured as an actor and writer, releasing two autobiographies. Ali retired from boxing in 1981 and focused on religion and charity. In 1984, he made public his diagnosis of Parkinson's syndrome, which some reports attribute to boxing-related injuries, though he and his specialist physicians disputed this. He remained an active public figure globally, but in his later years made increasingly limited public appearances as his condition worsened, and he was cared for by his family. Ali died on June 3, 2016.
    • Birthplace: Louisville, Kentucky, USA
    Jennifer Leann Carpenter (born December 7, 1979) is an American actress. She is known for playing Debra Morgan, the adoptive sister of the title character of the Showtime series Dexter, for which she earned a Saturn Award in 2009, and also for playing Rebecca Harris in the CBS television series Limitless. In 2019, she began playing Erica Shepherd, the lead role in the NBC drama The Enemy Within.
    • Birthplace: Louisville, Kentucky, USA
    Margaret Cassidy "Maggie" Lawson (born August 12, 1980) is an American actress who is best known for her role as Detective Juliet "Jules" O'Hara in the TV show Psych. From 2018 - 2019, she held the recurring role of Nathalie Flynn on Fox's Lethal Weapon's third and final season.
  • Sean Young
    Age: 63
    • Birthplace: Louisville, Kentucky, USA
    Mary Sean Young (born November 20, 1959) is an American actress. She is best known for her performances in the films Stripes (1981), Blade Runner (1982), Dune (1984), No Way Out (1987), Wall Street (1987), Cousins (1989) and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994).
    • Birthplace: USA, Kentucky, Louisville
    Gus Green Van Sant Jr. (born July 24, 1952) is an American film director, screenwriter, painter, photographer, musician, and author who has earned acclaim as both an independent and mainstream filmmaker. His films typically deal with themes of marginalized subcultures, in particular homosexuality; as such, Van Sant is considered one of the most prominent auteurs of the New Queer Cinema movement. Van Sant's early career was devoted to directing television commercials in the Pacific Northwest. He made his feature-length cinematic directorial debut with Mala Noche (1985). His second feature Drugstore Cowboy (1989) was highly acclaimed, and earned Van Sant screenwriting awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and New York Film Critics Circle and the award for Best Director from the National Society of Film Critics. His following film, My Own Private Idaho (1991), was similarly praised, as was the black comedy To Die For (1995), the drama Good Will Hunting (1997), and the biographical film Milk (2008); for the latter two, Van Sant was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director and both films received Best Picture nominations. In 2003, Van Sant's film about the Columbine High School massacre, Elephant, won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. Van Sant also received the festival's Best Director Award that same year, making him one of only two filmmakers—the other being Joel Coen—to win both accolades at the festival in the same year. Though most of Van Sant's other films received favourable reviews, such as Finding Forrester (2000) and Paranoid Park (2007), some of his efforts, such as the art house production Last Days (2005) and the environmental drama Promised Land (2012), have received more mixed reviews from critics, while his adaptation of Tom Robbins's Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1994), his 1998 remake of Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho, and The Sea of Trees (2015), were critical and commercial failures. In addition to directing, Van Sant has written the screenplays for several of his earlier works, and is the author of a novel entitled Pink. A book of his photography, called 108 Portraits, has also been published, and he has released two musical albums. He is openly gay and currently lives in Los Feliz, California.