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Famous Rice University Alumni

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List Rules People on this list must have gone to Rice University and be of some renown.

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

Examples of graduates on this list include Howard Hughes and Lance Berkman.

This list answers the questions “Which famous people went to Rice University?” and “Which celebrities are Rice University alumni?”
1
Peggy Whitson is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Biochemist, Astronaut, Biomedical sciences
Peggy Annette Whitson is an American biochemistry researcher, NASA astronaut, and former NASA Chief Astronaut. Her first space mission was in 2002, with an extended stay aboard the International ...more
2
James H. Newman is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Physicist, Astronaut
James Hansen Newman is an American physicist and a former NASA astronaut who flew on four Space Shuttle missions.
3
John Doerr is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Venture capitalist
John Doerr is a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers. He’s optimistic, enthusiastic and energetic. John joined KPCB in 1980, and with KPCB’s partners backed many of America’s best ...more
4
Joyce Carol Oates is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Editor, Poet, Literary critic
Joyce Carol Oates is an American author. Oates published her first book in 1963 and has since published over forty novels, as well as a number of plays and novellas, and many volumes of short ...more
5
Takao Doi is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Astronaut, Engineer
Takao Doi is a Japanese astronaut and a veteran of two NASA space shuttle missions. Doi holds a doctorate from the University of Tokyo in aerospace engineering, and has studied and published in ...more
6
Howard Hughes is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Pilot, Investor, Entrepreneur
Howard Robard Hughes, Jr. was an American business tycoon, investor, aviator, aerospace engineer, inventor, filmmaker and philanthropist. During his lifetime, he was one of the wealthiest people ...more
7
Shannon Walker is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Physicist, Flight engineer, Astronaut
Shannon Walker is an American scientist and a NASA astronaut, whose first space mission was Expedition 24 on the International Space Station with take-off on 15 June 2010. She is married to a ...more
8
Tamara E. Jernigan is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Astronaut, Scientist
Tamara Elizabeth "Tammy" Jernigan, Ph.D. is an American scientist and former NASA astronaut and a veteran of five shuttle missions.
9
Robert Woodrow Wilson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Physicist, Scientist, Astronomer
Robert Woodrow Wilson is an American astronomer, 1978 Nobel laureate in physics, who with Arno Allan Penzias discovered in 1964 the cosmic microwave background radiation. The award purse was ...more
10
George Chang is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Chemical engineer, Politician, Film Producer
George F.H. Chang is a film producer.
11
Fred C. Koch is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Chemical engineer, Businessperson, Industrialist
Fred Chase Koch was an American chemical engineer and entrepreneur who founded the oil refinery firm that later became Koch Industries, the second-largest privately held company in the United
12
James E. Gunn is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Astrophysicist
James Edward Gunn is the Eugene Higgins Professor of Astronomy at Princeton University. Gunn's early theoretical work in astronomy has helped establish the current understanding of how galaxies ...more
13
Steve Sailer is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Journalist
Steven Ernest Sailer is an American journalist and movie critic for The American Conservative, a blogger, a Taki's Magazine and VDARE.com columnist, and a former correspondent for UPI. He writes ...more
14
Candace Bushnell is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Television producer, Film Producer, Screenwriter
Candace Bushnell is an American novelist and television producer. She wrote a column for The New York Observer that was adapted into the bestselling Sex and the City anthology. The book was the ...more
15
Kevin Harvey is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Venture capitalist
Kevin Harvey is a founding member of and general partner at Benchmark, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm. He was ranked No. 27 on the 2011 Forbes Midas List and was No. 59 in 2012.
16
George Foreman III is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Business executive, Television producer, Professional Boxer
George Edward "Monk" Foreman III is an American boxer, business executive, and television personality. He is the son of former two-time heavyweight champion George Foreman.
17
Annise Parker is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Politician
Annise Danette Parker is an American politician, who has been elected Houston Mayor three times, serving since January 2, 2010. She also served as an at-large member of the Houston City Council ...more
18
Randa Duncan Williams is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Businessperson
Randa Duncan Williams was elected a Director of the general partner of Enterprise GP Holdings, L.P. in May 2007. Ms. Williams is a Director, President and CEO of EPCO, Inc., the majority owner ...more
19
Carlton M. Caves is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Physicist
Carlton "Carl" Morris Caves holds the position of Distinguished Professor in Physics and Astronomy at the University of New Mexico. He is notable for his work in the areas of physics ...more
20
David Aardsma is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Baseball player
David Allan Aardsma is an American professional baseball pitcher in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. He has played in Major League Baseball for the San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs, ...more
21
John D. Olivas is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Astronaut, Engineer
John Daniel "Danny" Olivas is an American engineer of Mexican descent and a former NASA astronaut. Olivas has flown on two space shuttle missions, STS-117 and STS-128. He performed ...more
22
Jeffrey A. Hoffman is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Astrophysicist, Professor, Astronaut
Jeffrey Alan Hoffman, Ph.D. is an American former NASA astronaut and currently a professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT. Hoffman made five flights as a space shuttle astronaut, ...more
23
Forest Baskett is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Venture capitalist
Forest joined NEA in 1999 as a Venture Partner and became a General Partner in 2004. Forest focuses on information technology investments. Present board memberships include Aeluros, Aprius, Arch ...more
24
George P. Bush is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Politician, Real estate entrepreneur, Military Officer
George Prescott Bush is an attorney, U.S. Navy Reserve officer, real estate investor, and politician who serves as the Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office. He is the eldest child of ...more
25
Bruce Dunlevie is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Rice University Alumni
Venture capitalist
Bruce is a seasoned veteran of venture capital with more than 15 years experience in high-tech investing. Prior to Benchmark, Bruce spent six years as a general partner with Merrill, Pickard, ...more