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Famous Purdue University Alumni

Updated June 14, 2019 70.7k views71 items

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

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

List features graduates like Drew Brees, Neil Armstrong and other famous Boilermakers.

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

Take a look at these notable Purdue University alumni. These very famous Purdue alumn!
  • 1
    Businessperson, Politician


    BirthplaceMemphis, Tennessee, USA

    Herman Cain (December 13, 1945 – July 30, 2020) was an American business executive, syndicated columnist, and Tea Party activist. Cain grew up in Georgia and graduated from Morehouse College with a...  more

    #61 of 107 Famous Politicians You'd Want to Have a Beer With#111 of 302 The Most Influential Politicians in American History#6 of 39 The Most Influential Republicans Who Were Once Democrats

  • 2
    Athlete, American football player


    BirthplaceAustin, Texas, United States of America

    Drew Christopher Brees (; born January 15, 1979) is an American football quarterback for the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League (NFL). After a successful college football career at...  more

    #2 of 120 The Best Quarterbacks Of All Time#9 of 1,323 The Best Football Players Ever#55 of 80 The Best NFL Player Nicknames

  • 3
    Comedian, Television producer


    BirthplaceChesterton, Indiana, USA

    James Christopher Gaffigan (born July 7, 1966) is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, and producer. He was raised in Chesterton, Indiana. His material is often about fatherhood,...  more

    #106 of 391 The 100+ Funniest People Of All Time#18 of 247 The Funniest Stand-Up Comedians Of All Time#119 of 213 Celebrities Who Should Run For President

  • 4
    Inventor, Engineer

    AgeDec. at 77 (1898-1976)

    BirthplaceNashville, Tennessee

    David N. Crosthwait Jr. (May 27, 1898 – February 25, 1976) was an African-American mechanical and electrical engineer, inventor, and writer. He was born in the city of Nashville, Tennessee. He grew...  more
  • 5
    Journalist, Author


    BirthplaceColumbus, Ohio, USA

    Edward Allen (born May 20, 1965) is an American author and television personality. He was the food and wine connoisseur on the Bravo network's television program Queer Eye, and has been the host of...  more
  • 6
    Businessperson, Entrepreneur

    AgeDec. at 88 (1907-1995)

    BirthplaceBrazil, Indiana

    Orville Clarence Redenbacher (July 16, 1907 – September 19, 1995) was an American businessman most often associated with the brand of popcorn that bears his name. The New York Times described him as...  more
  • 7
    Professor, Astronaut

    AgeDec. at 82 (1930-2012)

    BirthplaceOhio, United States of America

    Neil Alden Armstrong (August 5, 1930 – August 25, 2012) was an American astronaut and aeronautical engineer who was the first person to walk on the Moon. He was also a naval aviator, test pilot, and...  more

    #24 of 243 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities In The World#856 of 1,355 The Greatest Minds of All Time#46 of 753 People We Wish Were Still Alive

  • 8
    Film Producer, Actor

    AgeDec. at 65 (1928-1994)

    BirthplaceDetroit, Michigan, United States of America

    George Peppard Jr. (; October 1, 1928 – May 8, 1994) was an American film and television actor. Peppard secured a major role when he starred alongside Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961),...  more

    #462 of 1,017 The Best Actors In Film History#132 of 349 The Best TV Actors And Actresses Of All Time#922 of 1,883 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

  • 9
    Inventor, Electrical engineer


    BirthplaceEvanston, Illinois

    Edmund O. Schweitzer III (born 1947, Evanston, Illinois) is an electrical engineer, inventor, and founder of Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories (SEL). Schweitzer launched SEL in 1982 in Pullman,...  more
  • 10
    Pilot, Astronaut


    BirthplaceRock Island, Illinois

    Colonel Gary Eugene Payton, USAF, (born June 20, 1948) is an American astronaut, and worked as a payload specialist for NASA. Payton flew on the STS-51-C mission aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery in...  more
  • 11

    AgeDec. at 67 (1896-1964)

    Games Slayter (9 December 1896 – 15 October 1964) was a prolific U.S. engineer and inventor. He is best known for developing Fiberglass, starting with a new method of producing glass wool in 1933....  more
  • 12
    Inventor, Scientist

    AgeDec. at 84 (1921-2006)

    Robert C. Baker (December 29, 1921 – March 13, 2006) was an inventor and Cornell University professor. He invented the chicken nugget as well as many other poultry-related inventions. Due to his...  more
  • 13


    BirthplaceJefferson, Iowa

    Loren James Shriver (born September 23, 1944) is a former NASA astronaut, aviator, and a retired US Air Force Colonel....  more
  • 14
    Astronaut, Military aviator

    AgeDec. at 40 (1926-1967)

    BirthplaceMitchell, Indiana, United States of America

    Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom (April 3, 1926 – January 27, 1967) was one of the seven original National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Project Mercury astronauts, and the first of the Mercury...  more
  • 15


    BirthplaceAltavista, Virginia

    Guy Spence Gardner (born January 6, 1948) is a United States Air Force officer and a former astronaut. He holds the rank of colonel. He flew as pilot on two Space Shuttle missions, STS-27 and STS-35....  more
  • 16
    Geophysicist, Astronaut


    BirthplaceLancaster, Pennsylvania

    Andrew Jay "Drew" Feustel (; born August 25, 1965) is an American/Canadian NASA astronaut and Geophysicist. Following several years working as a geophysicist, Feustel was selected as an astronaut...  more
  • 17
    Flight engineer, Astronaut


    BirthplaceCrown Point, Indiana

    Jerry Lynn Ross (born January 20, 1948, Crown Point, Indiana) is a retired United States Air Force officer and a former NASA astronaut. He is a veteran of seven Space Shuttle missions, making him the...  more
  • 18


    BirthplaceGreenville, South Carolina

    John Howard Casper (born July 9, 1943) is an American astronaut and United States Air Force pilot....  more
  • 19
    Astronaut, Physician


    BirthplaceIndianapolis, Indiana

    David Alexander Wolf (born August 23, 1956) is an American astronaut, medical doctor and electrical engineer. Wolf has been to space four times. Three of his spaceflights were short-duration Space...  more
  • 20
    Astronaut, Engineer


    BirthplaceBedford, Shawswick Township, Indiana

    Charles David "Charlie" Walker (born August 29, 1948) is an American engineer who flew on three Space Shuttle missions in 1984 and 1985 as a Payload Specialist for the McDonnell Douglas Corporation....  more
  • 21
    Raymond "Ray" Clarence Ewry (October 14, 1873 – September 29, 1937) was an American track and field athlete who won eight gold medals at the Olympic Games and two gold medals at the Intercalated...  more
  • 22
    Mixed Martial Artist


    BirthplaceLoveland, Ohio, United States of America

    Matthew Stanley Hamill (born October 5, 1976) is an American mixed martial artist and wrestler who has competed in the Light Heavyweight division of the UFC. He is a three-time NCAA Division III...  more
  • 23
    Wrestler, Actor

    AgeDec. at 62 (1929-1991)

    BirthplaceUSA, Indiana, Delphi

    William Fritz Afflis (June 27, 1929 – November 10, 1991) was an American professional wrestler and football player, better known by his ring name, Dick the Bruiser....  more
  • 24
    Journalist, Television producer


    BirthplaceLafayette, Fairfield Township, Indiana, United States of America

    Brian Patrick Lamb (; born October 9, 1941) is an American journalist and the founder, executive chairman, and now retired CEO of C-SPAN; an American cable network which provides coverage of the U.S....  more
  • 25


    BirthplaceWest Lafayette, Wabash Township, Indiana

    Tobias Jacob "Toby" Moskowitz (born February 3, 1971) is an American financial economist and a professor at the Yale School of Management. He was the winner of the 2007 American Finance Association...  more