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Famous Tuskegee University Alumni

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Updated July 22, 2019 27.5k views 75 items

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

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

These graduates, like Lionel Richie and Keenen Ivory Wayans include images when available.

This list answers the questions “Which famous people went to Tuskegee University?” and “Which celebrities are Tuskegee University alumni?”
1
George Washington Carver... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Chemist, Inventor, Scientist

Birthplace: Diamond, Missouri

George Washington Carver (1860s – January 5, 1943), was an American agricultural scientist and inventor. He actively promoted alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil ...more

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2
Lionel Richie is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Record producer, Musician, Singer-songwriter

Age: 69

Birthplace: Tuskegee, Alabama, United States of America

Lionel Brockman Richie Jr. (born June 20, 1949) is an American singer, songwriter, actor, and record producer. Richie's style of ballads with the Commodores and in his solo career launched him ...more

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3
Claude McKay is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Poet, Writer

Age: Dec. at 59 (1889-1948)

Birthplace: Clarendon Parish, Jamaica

Festus Claudius "Claude" McKay (September 15, 1889 – May 22, 1948) was a Jamaican writer and poet, who was a seminal figure in the Harlem Renaissance. He wrote four novels: Home to ...more
4
Lonnie Johnson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Inventor

Age: 69

Birthplace: Mobile, Alabama

Lonnie George Johnson (born October 6, 1949) is an American inventor and engineer who holds more than 120 patents. He is the inventor of the Super Soaker water gun, which has been among the ...more
5
Keenen Ivory Wayans is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Keenen Ivory Wayans Television director, Comedian, Television producer

Age: 60

Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America

Keenen Ivory Wayans Sr. (born June 8, 1958) is an American actor, comedian, filmmaker, and a member of the Wayans family of entertainers. He first came to prominence as the host and the creator ...more

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6
Rickey Smiley is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Comedian, Radio personality, Actor

Birthplace: Birmingham, USA, Alabama

Broderick "Rickey" Smiley (born August 10, 1968) is an American stand-up comedian, television host, actor, and radio personality, known for his prank phone calls. The calls feature ...more

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7
Tom Joyner is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Television producer, Radio personality, Actor

Age: 69

Birthplace: Tuskegee, Alabama, United States of America

Thomas Joyner (born November 23, 1949) is an American radio host, host of the nationally syndicated The Tom Joyner Morning Show, and also founder of Reach Media Inc., the Tom Joyner Foundation, ...more

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8
Teddy Wilson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Jazz Pianist, Pianist, Musician

Age: Dec. at 74 (1912-1986)

Birthplace: Austin, Texas

Theodore Shaw Wilson (November 24, 1912 – July 31, 1986) was an American jazz pianist. Described by critic Scott Yanow as "the definitive swing pianist", Wilson's sophisticated and ...more
9
Frank Walker is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
American football player

Age: 34

Birthplace: Tuskegee, Alabama

Frank Bernard Walker (born August 6, 1981) is a former American football cornerback. He was drafted by the New York Giants in the sixth round of the 2003 NFL Draft after playing college football ...more
10
Al Green is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Politician, Lawyer

Age: 71

Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

Alexander N. Green (born September 1, 1947) is an American lawyer and politician. Green has served in Congress as the Representative for Texas's 9th congressional district since 2005. The 9th ...more
11
Betty Shabazz is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Nurse, Teacher

Age: Dec. at 63 (1934-1997)

Birthplace: Pinehurst, Georgia, United States of America

Betty Shabazz (born Betty Dean Sanders; May 28, 1934 – June 23, 1997), also known as Betty X, was an American educator and civil rights advocate. She was the wife of Malcolm X. Shabazz grew up ...more
12
Ralph Ellison is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Novelist, Author, Essayist

Age: Dec. at 81 (1913-1994)

Birthplace: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Ralph Waldo Ellison (March 1, 1914 – April 16, 1994) was an American novelist, literary critic, and scholar best known for his novel Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award in 1953. He ...more

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13
Ray Nagin is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Politician

Age: 62

Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

Clarence Ray Nagin Jr., also known as C. Ray Nagin (born June 11, 1956), is an American former politician and convicted felon who was the 60th Mayor of New Orleans, Louisiana, from 2002 to 2010. ...more
14
John A. Lankford is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Architect

Age: Dec. at 72 (1874-1946)

Birthplace: Potosi, Missouri

John A. Lankford was an American architect. He was the first professionally licensed African American architect in Virginia in 1922 and in the District of Columbia in 1924. He has been regarded ...more
15
Drayton Florence is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
American football player

Age: 35

Birthplace: Waycross, Georgia

Drayton Florence, Jr. (born December 19, 1980) is a former American football cornerback who played eleven seasons in the National Football League. He was drafted by the San Diego Chargers in the ...more
16
Daniel James, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni

Age: Dec. at 58 (1920-1978)

Birthplace: Pensacola, Florida

Daniel "Chappie" James Jr. (February 11, 1920 – February 25, 1978) was an American fighter pilot in the U.S. Air Force, who in 1975 became the first African American to reach the rank ...more
17
Percy Sutton is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Politician, Entrepreneur, Lawyer

Age: Dec. at 89 (1920-2009)

Birthplace: San Antonio, Texas, United States of America

Percy Ellis Sutton (November 24, 1920 – December 26, 2009) was a prominent black American political and business leader. An activist in the Civil Rights Movement and lawyer, he was also a ...more
18
Dimitri Patterson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
American football player

Age: 35

Birthplace: Orlando, Florida, United States of America

Dimitri Jonthiel Patterson (born June 18, 1983) is a former American football cornerback. He was signed by the Washington Redskins as an undrafted free agent in 2005. He played college football ...more
19
Gertrude Nelson is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Nurse

Age: Dec. at 103 (1898-2001)

Birthplace: Colfax, Louisiana

Gertrude DeWitt Nelson was an African-American military, civilian, and American Red Cross nurse from Louisiana whose career spanned much of the 20th century. She was born at the end of the 19th ...more
20
Robert L. Brown is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Businessperson, Architect

Age: 67

Birthplace: Dublin, Georgia

21
Arthur W. Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Politician, Farmer, Lawyer

Age: Dec. at 85 (1883-1968)

Birthplace: La Fayette, Alabama, United States of America

Arthur Wergs Mitchell (December 22, 1883 – May 9, 1968) was a U.S. Representative from Illinois. For his entire congressional career from 1935 to 1943, he was the only African American in ...more
22
Leon Wagner is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Baseball player

Age: Dec. at 70 (1934-2004)

Birthplace: Chattanooga, Tennessee, United States of America

Leon Lamar Wagner (May 13, 1934 – January 3, 2004) was an American professional baseball left fielder who played Major League Baseball (MLB) for the San Francisco Giants (1958–1959, 1969), St. ...more
23
Jake Simmons, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Jake Simmons, Jr.

Age: Dec. at 80 (1901-1981)

Birthplace: Haskell, Oklahoma

Joseph Jacob Simmons Jr. (January 17, 1901 – March 24, 1981) was a prominent African-American oilman. He "rose above humble beginnings to become the most successful and most recognizable ...more
24
Richard T. Jones is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Film Producer, Actor

Age: 47

Birthplace: Kobe, Keihanshin, Japan

Richard Timothy Jones (born January 16, 1972) is an American actor. Jones is best known for his portrayals of Laveinio in the dramatic film The Wood (1999) and Mike of the dramatic films Why Did ...more
25
Albert Murray is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Tuskegee University Alumni
Biographer, Novelist, Essayist

Age: Dec. at 97 (1916-2013)

Birthplace: Nokomis, Alabama

Albert L. Murray (May 12, 1916 – August 18, 2013) was an American literary and jazz critic, novelist, essayist and biographer.