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12 Famous People Born in Seattle

Nov 10th, 2021

Seattle has been home to many inventors, musicians, actors, entrepreneurs and more over its relatively short lifespan. From billionaires to musicians to actors and everything in-between, here are some fascinating people who were born in Seattle in the past century or so. 

12 famous people born in Seattle

Bill Gates

Birthday: October 28, 1955

Founder of Microsoft and a computer programmer by trade, Good ol’ Bill has called Seattle “home” all his life. An avid entrepreneur and successful businessmen, Gates is heavily involved in philanthropy and has authored several books.

Greg “The Hammer” Valentine

Birthday: June 17, 1947

Son of famed wrestler Johnny Valentine, Greg “The Hammer” Valentine holds over 40 wrestling championship titles over his 50-year career. He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2004 and into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2016. Other ring names include Johnny Valentine Jr., Johnny Fargo, Boxcar Willie, The Blue Knight and Baby Face Nelson. 

Jamal Crawford

Birthday: March 20, 1980

Professional basketball player Jamal Crawford is considered one of the best ball handlers in NBA history and has an impressive list of stats to boot. He has played for teams like the Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers, Chicago Bulls, Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, Golden State Warriors, Portland Trail Blazers, Atlanta Hawks and the Minnesota Timberwolves. 

Jeffrey Dean Morgan

Birthday: April 22, 1966

Whether you know him as John Winchester on “Supernatural,” as Negan on “The Walking Dead” or as Denny Duquette on “Grey’s Anatomy,” Jeffrey Dean Morgan has proved to be an impressive figure on both film and television screens. 

Jimi Hendrix

Birthday: November 27, 1942

Legendary singer/musician/songwriter Jimi Hendrix is considered one of the best electric guitarists of all time, combining genres like blues, rock and jazz into revolutionary compositions that took the music world by storm in the late 1960s. 

Kenny G

Birthday: June 5, 1956

Grammy award-winning saxophonist Kenny G began his music career as a young child in a jazz band and is currently the holder of several platinum-status albums and world records in his name. 


Birthday: June 19, 1983

Born Benjamin Hammond Haggerty, rapper Macklemore rose to fame in 2009 and became well known over the years for the hits "Can’t Hold Us" and "Thrift Shop."

Rainn Wilson

Birthday: January 20, 1966

We have Rainn Wilson to thank for TV’s most beloved beet farmer and paper salesman extraordinaire, Dwight Schrute. Since “The Office” ended in 2013, Wilson has since been involved in a variety of film and television projects. 

Robert Stroud

Birthday: January 8, 1890

Also known as “the birdman of Alcatraz,” Robert Stroud was a convicted felon who, during his time in solitary confinement, discovered a nest of sparrows and developed an interest in ornithology. He studied birds extensively during his time in prison and even secretly published a book on bird diseases in 1933. An interesting character, indeed. 

Ryan Stiles

Birthday: April 22, 1959

Comedian Ryan Stiles is best known for his talent in improv comedy, which is probably best displayed by his nine-year-run on the hit comedy show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” from 1989-2006. He’s appeared in a wide variety of films, commercials and televisions shows throughout his illustrious career, and is currently starring in the 2013 reboot of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” on The CW. 

Stone Gossard

Birthday: July 20, 1966

Pearl Jam wouldn’t exist without legendary rhythm guitarist and co-lyricist Stone Gossard, who helped form the rock band in Seattle in 1990. His discography also includes a host of other Seattle-based grunge bands like Green River, Mother Love Bone and Temple of the Dog. 

William P. Yarborough

Birthday: May 12, 1912

Lieutenant General William Pelham Yarborough served in the U.S. Army from 1931-1971 and is credited as the “Father of the Modern Green Berets.” He was appointed Commander of the U.S. Army Special Warfare Center in 1961, and during his term he further developed the Special Forces Unit and introduced new parachuting uniforms that were used up until and throughout the Vietnam War. He died in Southern Pines, North Carolina and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

There are so many more people we can add to this list, but hopefully these give you an idea of just how diverse the people who are born in Seattle are, and all the potential and possibility Seattleites can bring to the global table. And who knows? Maybe we can add some of you in our luxury Seattle apartments to the list!

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Featured photo courtesy Pixabay/12019

Author of Article

Colleen Ford is a South African who now lives in Spokane, Washington. She loves to travel, camp (in warm weather) and bake.

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