List of people from the Louisville metropolitan area

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This is a list of people from the Louisville metropolitan area. Included are notable people who were either born or raised there, or have maintained residency for a significant period of time.

Name Description
Terry Adams Musician, founding member of NRBQ[1]
James S. Albus Engineer and Senior NIST Fellow; developer of digital solar aspect sensor, real-time control system, Robocrane
Muhammad Ali Multiple heavyweight boxing champion; iconic figure of 20th-century American sports
Martha-Bryan Allen Broadway actress; aunt of Elizabeth Montgomery
Derek L. Anderson Former Kentucky Wildcat basketball player; played on the 1996 NCAA Championship team; former 12-year NBA basketball player drafted by Cleveland in 1997; won an NBA Championship with Miami in 2006
Major Robert Anderson[2] Union Army officer in the Civil War, known for his command of Fort Sumter at the start of the war
John James Audubon Ornithologist, naturalist and painter; lived in Louisville for about two years
James Gilbert Baker Astronomer and designer of optics systems; president of the Optical Society of America; helped found the Louisville Astronomical Society; born and raised in Louisville; attended the Louisville duPont Manual High School and the University of Louisville
Mickey Baker Blues guitarist and singer; had million-seller hit in 1956 with "Love Is Strange" with wife Sylvia
Marty Bass Television news reporter, weatherman, and presidential candidate; born and raised in Louisville
Matt Battaglia Actor in and producer of more than 100 films; produced Brothers with Tobey Maguire, Jake Gyllenhaal and Natalie Portman; co-founder of Derby Eve cancer benefit The Mint Jubilee
Ralph Beard Born in Hardinsburg, Kentucky, attended Louisville Male High School; former Kentucky Wildcat basketball player; played on the 1948 and 1949 NCAA Championship teams; won gold medal with Team USA Basketball in the 1948 Summer Olympics
Ned Beatty Character actor of film, TV and stage; appeared in a wide variety of roles in movies such as The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean, Deliverance, Superman (1978), Network and 1941
Morris Burke Belknap businessman with Belknap Hardware and Manufacturing Company; Republican nominee for Governor of Kentucky
William Burke Belknap philanthropist, breeder of American saddlebred horses, owner of Land O' Goshen Farms
William Richardson Belknap President of W. B. Belknap Company
James Best Character actor, known for his role as Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane on The Dukes of Hazzard
Barry Bingham, Jr. Publisher of The Courier-Journal
Barry Bingham, Sr. Publisher of The Courier-Journal and The Louisville Times; led both papers to national prominence
Larry Birkhead Entertainment photojournalist
Rob Bironas Professional football player for Tennessee Titans of the NFL
Phil Bond Professional basketball player for the Houston Rockets
Anne Braden Civil rights activist
Carl Braden Civil rights activist
Louis Brandeis Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States; namesake of the University of Louisville School of Law
Ulysses "Junior" Bridgeman Louisville businessman; basketball star at the University of Louisville; had a long NBA career, mostly with the Milwaukee Bucks
Brian Brohm Buffalo Bills quarterback
Foster Brooks Actor and comedian; known for his "Lovable Lush" character; long-time Las Vegas headliner; appeared on numerous TV programs from the mid-1960s to mid-1990s; cameo roles in The Villain and Cannonball Run II; perhaps best known for his frequent appearances on the Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts, and on the Dean Martin Show
Odell Brown Jazz organist
Pete Browning[3] 19th century Major League Baseball player; first to use custom bats; uncle of Tod Browning
Tod Browning Film actor and director; directed several films starring silent screen legend Lon Chaney Sr., among them The Unholy 3 (1925) and West of Zanzibar (1928); known for directing the horror classic Dracula (1931) starring Bela Lugosi, and the cult classic Freaks (1932)
John W. Bubbles Half of the black comedic song and tap dance team "Buck & Bubbles" with his partner Ford Lee "Buck" Washington; appeared in films A Star Is Born (1937) and Cabin in the Sky (1943); originated the role of the character "Sportin' Life" in George Gershwin's musical Porgy and Bess; first black entertainer to appear on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson
Lance Burton Stage magician
LaVerne Butler Pastor of 9th & O Baptist Church in Louisville, 1969-1988; president of Mid-Continent University, 1988-1997[4]
Paul Byrd Professional baseball player for the Boston Red Sox
Jennifer Carpenter Actress best known as Debra Morgan on Showtime's Dexter
Harry Carter Silent film actor; appeared in numerous films including the 1921 serial The Hope Diamond Mystery
Charley Chase Pornographic actress
George Rogers Clark Preeminent military leader on the northwestern frontier during the American Revolutionary War
Joseph Clayton Former Kentucky Derby celebrity turned recycling industry leader and innovator. Best known for calling out woodpeckers in sawdust piles.
William Conrad Actor and narrator in radio, film and television from the 1930s through the 1990s; provided the voice for Marshal Matt Dillon in the radio version of Gunsmoke; later starred as TV detective Frank Cannon
Jim Cornette Professional wrestling manager and promoter
Joe Creason Journalist for The Courier-Journal, known for his columns on the everyday lives of Kentuckians
Bernie Crimmins University of Notre Dame football player; head football college football coach at Indiana University; assistant football coach at Notre Dame and Purdue University
Iman Crosson Actor, Internet celebrity and Obama impersonator who became an example of professional promotion using the Internet
Tom Cruise Actor (born in Syracuse, New York, lived in Louisville until his mid-teens); star of the films Risky Business, Top Gun, A Few Good Men, and Mission: Impossible
Denny Crum University of Louisville men's basketball head coach; member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a coach
Vadim Dale Australian reality television personality (Outback Jack); officer with the Louisville Metro Police Department
Roger Davis Actor in Dark Shadows and Alias Smith and Jones; custom home designer and builder in Los Angeles
Frederick Detweiler Sociologist, born in Louisville in 1881
George Devol Inventor of the first industrial robot.
David Dick WHAS (AM) radio and WHAS-TV newscaster in Louisville prior to joining CBS News as reporter and correspondent
Irene Dunne Actress, starred in 1931 Academy Award Best Picture Cimarron
Reuben T. Durrett Lawyer, jurist, writer, and historian; a founder of the Louisville Free Public Library
Thomas Alva Edison Inventor and businessman; before fame, lived in Butchertown during 1866–1867 around age 19; a house near where he lived is now a museum in his honor
Bob Edwards Broadcaster for National Public Radio
Jimmy Ellis Heavyweight boxing champion
Pervis Ellison Basketball player; born in Savannah, Georgia; "Never Nervous Pervis" was the starting center for the University of Louisville for four years, including the 1986 national championship year; second freshman to be named the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Final Four; first overall pick in the 1989 NBA Draft by the Sacramento Kings
Norris Embry Expressionist painter
Abraham Flexner Educator
Simon Flexner Pioneer of scientific medicine
Pat Forde Sportswriter; reporter and columnist for The Courier-Journal, ESPN.com, and Yahoo! Sports[5]
Dian Fossey Nurse at Kosair Children's Hospital; ethologist interested in gorillas
Fontaine Fox Nationally syndicated cartoonist; creator of The Toonerville Trolley (aka Toonerville Folks), one of the most popular strips of the World War I era
Richard Frymire Kentucky State Representative (1962–1964), State Senator (1966–1968), Adjutant General (1971–1977)
Gertrude Ganote All-American Girls Professional Baseball League player, 1944-1945
Billy Gilbert Film actor during the 1930s and 1940s; appeared in supporting roles in Laurel & Hardy shorts The Music Box and County Hospital; model and voice for Sneezy in Disney's Snow White
Sam Gilliam Abstract expressionist painter
William Girdler Director and producer of 1970s B-grade films such as Abby, Asylum of Satan and Grizzly
C. W. Grafton Author
Sue Grafton Author
Petey Greene Television and radio talk show host; two-time Emmy Award-winner
D. W. Griffith Film director and innovator; credited with originating many camera techniques still commonly used in films today; directed The Birth of a Nation, Intolerance and Way Down East; lived several years in the Brown Hotel, until his death in 1948
Darrell Griffith Basketball player; won 1980 NCAA basketball championship and John R. Wooden Award, 1980 NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player, 1981 NBA Rookie of the Year Award; played 11 seasons with the Utah Jazz; nicknamed "Dr. Dunkenstein" for aerial exploits
David Grissom Guitarist for Storyville, Joe Ely, The Allman Brothers Band, John Mellencamp
Lionel Hampton Bandleader and jazz musician
Scott Harrington Racing driver; Indianapolis 500 veteran and Indy Car Rookie of the Year
Heather French Henry Miss America 2000
John Hensley TV and film actor, regular cast member on the cable TV program Nip/Tuck
Mildred and Patty Hill Composers of the song "Happy Birthday to You"
Charles T. Hinde Railroad executive, founder of the Hotel del Coronado and businessman
Doan Hoang Movie director, movie producer, documentary Oh Saigon (2007) and short film Hard Times (2012); graduate of Seneca High School (1990) in Louisville
Audrey Hollander Pornographic actress
Telma Hopkins Singer and actress, member of the 1970s pop music trio Tony Orlando and Dawn
James Horan Television and film actor
Paul Hornung Football player with the National Football League's Green Bay Packers and Notre Dame Fighting Irish; member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame
Allan Houston NBA player, New York Knicks; son of Wade Houston
Wade Houston Louisville businessman; player and assistant coach at the University of Louisville; head men's basketball coach at the University of Tennessee; father of Allan Houston
Edwin Hubble Astronomer, astrophysicist; basketball coach at New Albany High School; namesake of the Hubble Space Telescope; lived in the Highlands
Henry Hull Stage and film actor, star of the 1935 film Werewolf of London
Lewis Craig Humphrey Editor of Louisville newspapers The Evening Post and The Herald-Post
Thomas MacGillivray Humphrey Economist, historian of economic thought, author, Federal Reserve Bank editor
Anna Mae Hutchison All-American Girls Professional Baseball League player, 1944-1949
Joe Jacoby Football player for the Washington Redskins
Jim James Born Jim Olliges; musician, lead singer of My Morning Jacket
Ken Jenkins Stage and film actor; co-founder of Actors Theatre of Louisville; Scrubs, Gone in 60 Seconds, I Am Sam
Tom Kennedy Game show host
Wesley Korir Kenyan marathoner; winner of the 2012 Boston Marathon; member of the National Assembly of Kenya; ran track at, and graduated from, the University of Louisville; before his election to the National Assembly, he kept a home in Louisville
James Kottak Drummer for metal band Scorpions; Yamaha drums endorser and clinician; drummer for Kingdom Come, Warrant and Wild Horses
Tim Krekel Musician, recording artist, hit songwriter, member of Jimmy Buffett's band
Paul Laird Musicologist, professor at University of Kansas
Increase A. Lapham Surveyor, naturalist, helped found the U.S Weather Bureau
Jennifer Lawrence Film actress, known for her Oscar-winning performance in Silver Linings Playbook and Oscar-nominated performance in Winter's Bone, and as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games
Maggie Lawson TV actress known for her role as Juliet on the detective drama/comedy Psych
Stefan LeFors Quarterback for University of Louisville, and in the NFL and CFL; head football coach for the high school team of the Christian Academy of Louisville
Tom London Bit player and stunt performer in numerous films, primarily westerns; began film career in early silent era; transitioned to TV roles in the early 1950s; listed in Guinness World Records as Hollywood's most prolific actor, with over 600 film appearances
William Mapother Film and television actor, Lost and In the Bedroom
Herbert Marcus Co-founder and CEO of Neiman Marcus
Joe E. Martin Olympic boxing coach who trained World Heavyweight Champions Muhammad Ali and Jimmy Ellis, and several National Golden Gloves champions
Oksana Masters Paralympic medalist in rowing and cross-country skiing; graduate of Atherton High School[6]
A'dia Mathies WNBA player for Los Angeles Sparks
Victor Mature Actor; My Darling Clementine, Kiss of Death, Samson and Delilah, The Robe
Jane Mayhall Poet[7]
William E. McAnulty, Jr. First African American to serve on the Kentucky Supreme Court
U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell U.S. Senate Minority Leader
Brian McMahan Rock musician known for work in Squirrel Bait, Slint, Palace Brothers, The For Carnation, and King Kong
Mary T. Meagher Olympic gold medalist and multiple world record holder in swimming; sister of Anne Northup
Terry Meiners Radio and television personality
Milton Metz Radio and television personality
Alexandria Mills Miss World 2010
Beverle Graves Myers Author
Jack Narz Game show host
First Sergeant James J. Nash Medal of Honor recipient for his service during the Spanish–American War
Carrie Marcus Neiman Co-founder and Chair of Neiman Marcus
Carl Nett Kentucky State Representative (1970–1990)
Frank Neuhauser Winner of the first National Spelling Bee, held in 1925[8]
Bobby Nichols Professional golfer, known for winning the 1964 PGA Championship, one of the Majors in men's golf
Marsha Norman Playwright who won the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
Anne Northup U.S. Representative from Louisville, 1997–2007; member of the Consumer Products Safety Commission; sister of Mary T. Meagher
Grady Nutt Humorist and television personality (Hee Haw); lived in Louisville from 1960 until his death in 1982; graduate of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Will Oldham Songwriter and musician
Joan Osborne Singer-songwriter
Jimmy Osting Major League Baseball player
ZZ Packer Writer; born in Chicago; lived in Louisville in her teens and graduated from Seneca High School in 1990
Scott Padgett Former Kentucky Wildcat basketball player, played on the 1996 and 1998 NCAA Championship teams; former 7-year NBA basketball player drafted by Utah in 1998; now head men's basketball coach at Samford University
Greg Page Heavyweight boxing champion
David Pajo Indie musician known for work in Slint, Tortoise, and Zwan
Bubba Paris Graduate of Louisville's DeSales High School; offensive tackle for the 1982 Super Bowl-winning San Francisco 49ers
Clarence M. Pendleton, Jr.[9] Chairman of the United States Commission on Civil Rights (1981 until his death in 1988), born in Louisville in 1930
Fred Pfeffer[3] Major League Baseball player
Rick Pitino Men's basketball coach at University of Louisville; former head coach at Providence College, the University of Kentucky and the Boston Celtics
Bill Plaschke Los Angeles sports columnist, panelist on ESPN's Around the Horn
Marty Pollio (aka Marty Polio) Stand-up comic and mime; has appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson; has performed his semi-autobiographical one-man show "Prisoners Of Cheese" at The Montreal Fringe Festival
George Dennison Prentice Newspaper editor and journalist for the Louisville Journal
Artimus Pyle Drummer for the Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd
Steve Raible NFL player for the Seattle Seahawks; co-anchor of local KIRO News in Seattle
Wes Ramsey TV and film actor, daytime serial Guiding Light and independent film Latter Days
Jimmy Raney Jazz guitarist
Jon Rauch Professional baseball player for the Arizona Diamondbacks
Pee Wee Reese Hall of Fame shortstop for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers; noted for his acceptance of Jackie Robinson when the latter broke baseball's color line
Marco Reguzzoni Italian politician and entrepreneur, owner of Biocell Center, honorary citizen
Rob Riggle Actor on The Daily Show, The Office, and Saturday Night Live
Martha Rofheart née Jones Model, actress and author; born in Louisville 1917, moved to New York City in late 1930s; actress Lynn Fontanne's protege; appeared on Broadway; published six historical novels in 1970s and 80s
Rajon Rondo Former Kentucky Wildcat basketball player; current NBA player for the Sacramento Kings; won an NBA Championship with the Boston Celtics in 2008; participated in several NBA All-Star games
Don Rosa Illustrator of Scrooge McDuck, Donald Duck and other Disney characters
Rudy Rucker Computer scientist and science fiction author
Colonel Harland Sanders Founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken; born, raised, and lived in Henryville, Indiana until adulthood
Diane Sawyer Television journalist, anchor of ABC World News; former co-anchor of ABC's Good Morning America
Nicole Scherzinger Actress, singer and dancer; known for her work as the lead vocalist for the Pussycat Dolls
"Papa" John Schnatter Founder of Papa John's Pizza; born and raised in Jeffersonville, Indiana until founding his pizza chain
Phil Simms Quarterback for the NFL's New York Giants; television sportscaster
Donta Smith Professional basketball player for the South Dragons of the National Basketball League Australia
James Speed Lawyer, politician, and professor
James Breckenridge Speed Businessman and philanthropist
Sergeant John C. Squires Medal of Honor recipient for his service during World War II
Static Major Record producer who gained fame posthumously for featuring in Lil Wayne's "Lollipop"
Rudell Stitch Welterweight boxer
Danny Sullivan Racing driver and winner of the 1985 Indianapolis 500
Gary J. Sullivan Electrical engineer who led the development of the H.264/MPEG-4 AVC and HEVC international standards for video coding; created the DirectX Video Acceleration (DXVA) API/DDI video decoding feature of the Microsoft Windows operating system
Hunter S. Thompson Journalist and author, long-time contributing writer for Rolling Stone magazine
Mary Travers Folk singer with Peter, Paul and Mary
Dan Uggla Infielder for the Atlanta Braves
Eugene Ulrich Chief editor for interpretation of the Dead Sea Scrolls
Johnny Unitas Quarterback at University of Louisville; went on to a Hall of Fame career, mainly with the Baltimore Colts
Wes Unseld Basketball player and coach in the NBA; member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a player
Gus Van Sant Film director, photographer, musician, and author
Britt Walford Drummer for Slint
Jeff Walz Women's basketball coach at the University of Louisville
Jack Warden Film and television actor; began his career in the early 1950s on TV shows such as Playhouse 90 and Studio One; later appeared in films such as Run Silent, Run Deep, Shampoo and All the President's Men
Henry Watterson Founder of The Courier-Journal; namesake of the Henry Watterson Expressway
Brent Weedman Mixed martial artist
Todd Wellemeyer Major League Baseball player, Chicago Cubs, Florida Marlins, Kansas City Royals, St. Louis Cardinals
Gus Weyhing MLB pitcher for 11 teams
Jeffrey Wigand 60 Minutes tobacco industry whistleblower
Evan Williams Early Kentucky settler and distiller
Will Wolford Pro Bowl NFL offensive lineman, played for Pittsburgh Steelers, Buffalo Bills, and Indianapolis Colts; head football coach at his alma mater of St. Xavier High School; radio color analyst for the Indianapolis Colts
Keke Wyatt R&B singer, most prominent in the late 1990s and early 2000s
Enid Yandell Sculptor
John Yarmuth U.S. Representative from Louisville, 2007–present; founder of the alt-weekly Louisville Eccentric Observer
York William Clark's manservant and participant in Lewis and Clark Expedition
Sean Young Film and television actress; began career with supporting roles in films such as Blade Runner, Stripes and Dune
Mia Zapata Murdered singer of the Seattle punk band The Gits
John Ziegler Radio talk show host
Fuzzy Zoeller Professional golfer; winner of two major championships (1979 Masters, 1984 U.S. Open); born, raised, and lives on the Indiana side of the metropolitan area in Floyd County
Jacek M. Zurada Professor of electrical engineering at the University of Louisville J. B. Speed School of Engineering, specializing in artificial neural networks

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Terry Adams". all music. Retrieved April 2, 2013. 
  2. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Marquis Who's Who. 1967. 
  3. ^ a b Reichler, Joseph L., ed. (1979) [1969]. The Baseball Encyclopedia (4th ed.). New York: Macmillan Publishing. ISBN 0-02-578970-8. 
  4. ^ Michael Foust, Obituary of LaVerne Butler, Baptist Press, December 21, 2010
  5. ^ Forde, Pat (February 26, 2013). "Forde Minutes: Who deserves a No. 1 seed?". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved February 28, 2013. The Minutes kept it local last week, but that doesn't mean there wasn't quality food to be had. When hungry in Louisville, try the peerless Jack Fry's (40), a famed local landmark that has nothing bad on the menu. 
  6. ^ Brownstein, Glenn (March 9, 2014). "Louisville's Oksana Masters wins milestone silver medal in Winter Paralympics skiing". The Courier-Journal. Retrieved March 10, 2014.  (soft paywall)
  7. ^ Fox, Margalit. "Jane Mayhall, Poet Who Gained Prominence Late in Life, Is Dead at 90", The New York Times, March 19, 2009. Accessed March 19, 2009.
  8. ^ Brown, Emma (2011-03-21). "Frank Neuhauser, winner of first national spelling bee, dies at 97". Washington Post. Retrieved 2011-04-03. 
  9. ^ "Notable Kentucky African Americans Database". uky.edu. Retrieved March 19, 2013.