Brandeis University

Discover the notable alumni of Brandeis University. The list includes people like Angela Davis, Debra Messing, Tyne Daly, Thomas Friedman & Christie Hefner. This list of notable alumni is loosely sorted by popularity and has people from different domains of life, such as writers, intellectuals & academics, scientists, media personalities and engineers etc.
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 1 
Angela Davis
(Political Activist)
Angela Davis
55
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: January 26, 1944
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Birmingham

Activist, philosopher, academic and author, Angela Davis is a founding member of the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism (CCDS). She has worked in the areas of feminism, class, race and the US prison system. She has also received criticism for supporting the erstwhile Soviet Union and has been accused of supporting political violence.

 2 
Debra Messing
(American Actress Known for Her TV Series: ‘Ned and Stacey' and ‘Will & Grace’)
Debra Messing
29
Birthdate: August 15, 1968
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Debra Messing is an American actress who received five Primetime Emmy and seven Golden Globe nominations for her portrayal of Grace Adler in the popular sitcom Will & Grace. For her contribution to television, Debra Messing was honored with a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2017. 

 3 
Tyne Daly
(Actress)
Tyne Daly
19
Birthdate: February 21, 1946
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Madison, Wisconsin
Tyne Daly won four of her six Emmys for her portrayal of Mary Beth Lacey in Cagney & Lacey. She is known for her roles in Judging Amy and Christy, too. She is also a Tony-winning stage actor, known for her works in the Broadway productions Gypsy and Rabbit Hole
 4 
Tony Goldwyn
(Actor, Producer and Director Known for His Role as President ‘Fitzgerald Grant III’ in the TV Series ‘Scandal’)
Tony Goldwyn
6
Birthdate: May 20, 1960
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States

Tony Goldwyn is an American actor, filmmaker, and singer. Also an activist, Goldwyn served as the president of a nonprofit group called the Creative Coalition. He also serves as an ambassador for a nonprofit legal organization called the Innocence Project, which aims at reforming the criminal justice system.

 5 
Loretta Devine
(Best Known for Her Role as ‘Adele Webber’ in the TV Series ‘Grey's Anatomy’)
Loretta Devine
16
Birthdate: August 21, 1949
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States
Loretta Devine is best known for her portrayal of Lorrell Robinson in the Broadway musical Dreamgirls. Her performance as Adele Webber in Grey's Anatomy won her an Emmy. She has also delivered stellar performances in the films Waiting to Exhale and The Preacher's Wife and the series Family Reunion.
 6 
Simon Sinek
(Author and Inspirational Speaker Known for His Books ‘Start With Why’ and ‘The Infinite Game’)
Simon Sinek
7
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: October 9, 1973
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Wimbledon, London, United Kingdom

The London-born American is a noted author and motivational speaker who has written five books including Leaders Eat Last, which made to the bestseller lists of the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. Sometimes criticized for ‘self-promotion’, Simon Oliver Sinek also worked with Ernst & Young and provided leadership training. He is an instructor at Columbia University.

 7 
Thomas Friedman
(Journalist & Author)
Thomas Friedman
6
Birthdate: July 20, 1953
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Minneapolis, MN

Thomas Friedman is an American author and political commentator. He also contributes immensely to the New York Times as a weekly columnist. A three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, Thomas Friedman was honored by the American Academy of Achievement with the prestigious Golden Plate Award in 2003.

 8 
Gates McFadden
(Actress)
Gates McFadden
6
Birthdate: March 2, 1949
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, United States
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 9 
Christie Hefner
(Former CEO of Playboy)
Christie Hefner
5
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: November 8, 1952
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Wilmette, Illinois, United States
 10 
Robin Weigert
(Actress)
Robin Weigert
2
Birthdate: July 7, 1969
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 11 
Abbie Hoffman
(Political Activist, Co-Founder of the 'Youth International Party' and Member of the 'Chicago Seven')
Abbie Hoffman
25
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: November 30, 1936
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Worcester, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 12, 1989

The co-founder of the Youth International Party, Abbie Hoffman was an American social and political activist. A popular exponent of the Flower Power movement, Abbie Hoffman played a major role in the events leading up to the violent confrontations with the cops during the 1968 Democratic National Convention. He remains an iconic figure of the counterculture era.

 12 
Louise Lasser
(Actress)
Louise Lasser
4
Birthdate: April 11, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 13 
Leslie Lamport
(Mathematician, Computer scientist, Programmer, Engineer, Writer)
Leslie Lamport
1
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: February 7, 1941
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City
 14 
Mitch Albom
(Writer)
Mitch Albom
5
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: May 23, 1958
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Passaic, New Jersey, United States
 15 
Alexander Gould
(Actor)
Alexander Gould
2
Birthdate: May 4, 1994
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, USA
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 16 
Jeffrey Lurie
(Producer)
Jeffrey Lurie
2
Birthdate: September 8, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, USA
 17 
Steven Culp
(Actor)
Steven Culp
1
Birthdate: December 3, 1955
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: La Jolla, California, USA
Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
 18 
Sam Shankland
(American Chess Grandmaster)
Sam Shankland
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 1, 1991
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Berkeley, California, United States
 19 
Marta Kauffman
(Writer)
Marta Kauffman
4
Birthdate: September 21, 1956
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
 20 
Karen Lynn Gorney
(Actress)
Karen Lynn Gorney
3
Birthdate: January 28, 1945
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Beverly Hills, California, United States
Height: 5'2" (157 cm)
 21 
Sidney Blumenthal
(Journalist)
Sidney Blumenthal
1
Birthdate: November 6, 1948
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Chicago
 22 
Patricia Hill Collins
(American Philosopher, Sociologist and University teacher)
Patricia Hill Collins
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: May 1, 1948
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
 23 
Barry Newman
(Film actor)
Barry Newman
1
Birthdate: November 7, 1938
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
 24 
Paul L. Smith
(Actor)
Paul L. Smith
1
Birthdate: June 24, 1936
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Everett, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 25, 2012
Height: 6'4" (193 cm)
 25 
Jack Abramoff
(Producer)
Jack Abramoff
2
Birthdate: February 28, 1958
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States
 26 
Kathy Acker
(Author)
Kathy Acker
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: April 18, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York City, New York
Died: November 30, 1997
 27 
Veronica Taylor
(Voice Actress)
Veronica Taylor
3
Birthdate: December 4, 1965
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
 28 
Michael Walzer
(Political Theorist and Public Intellectual)
Michael Walzer
1
Birthdate: March 3, 1935
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
 29 
Gary David Goldberg
(Writer, Television producer)
Gary David Goldberg
1
Birthdate: June 25, 1944
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: June 22, 2013
 30 
Allan Lichtman
(Historian)
Allan Lichtman
1
Birthdate: April 4, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brownsville, New York, United States

Best known for creating a key system that can be used for predicting the outcome of the US presidential elections, Allan Jay Lichtman is a celebrated historian and an influential geopolitical expert.  Also a renowned author known for works like The Keys to the White House, he has also been an expert witness in numerous civil and voting rights cases

 31 
Jon Landau
(record producer, music critic, talent manager, composer, journalist)
Jon Landau
3
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: May 14, 1947
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: United States of America
 32 
Jerry Douglas
(Actor)
Jerry Douglas
2
Birthdate: November 12, 1932
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Warren, Ohio, United States
Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
 33 
Elaine Showalter
(Literary critic)
Elaine Showalter
1
Birthdate: January 21, 1941
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
 34 
Seyla Benhabib
(Philosopher, Writer)
Seyla Benhabib
0
Birthdate: September 9, 1950
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Istanbul, Turkey
 35 
Ha Jin
(Chinese-American Novelist, Poet, and Teacher)
Ha Jin
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: February 21, 1956
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Liaoning, China

Ha Jin is a Chinese-American novelist and poet. His works have been honored with several prestigious awards like the National Book Award for Fiction, Pushcart Prizes, and the PEN/Faulkner Award. In addition to writing award-winning novels and poems, Ha Jin also teaches at Boston University.

 36 
Roderick MacKinnon
(American Biophysicist, Neuroscientist and Businessman)
Roderick MacKinnon
0
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: February 19, 1956
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Burlington, Massachusetts, United States
 37 
George Saitoti
(Former Vice President of Kenya)
George Saitoti
2
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 3, 1945
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Maasailand, Kenya
Died: June 10, 2012
George Saitoti was a Kenyan politician, economist, mathematician, businessman, and development policy thinker. He is best remembered for his service as the vice-president of Kenya on two occasions; from 1989 to 1998 and again from 1999 to 2002. Saitoti also served as the Minister of Finance from 1988 to 1993 and as the Minister of Education from 2003 to 2008.
 38 
Allen Grossman
(Poet)
Allen Grossman
0
Birthdate: January 7, 1932
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
Died: June 27, 2014
 39 
Arjun Appadurai
(anthropologist, sociologist)
Arjun Appadurai
0
Birthdate: February 4, 1949
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Mumbai

Arjun Appadurai is an anthropologist widely regarded as a major theorist in globalization studies.  Born in India, he migrated to USA as a young man. He received his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of Chicago and embarked on an academic career. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  

 40 
Oscar Handlin
(Historian)
Oscar Handlin
0
Birthdate: September 29, 1915
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: September 20, 2011
 41 
Fatema Mernissi
(Sociologist)
Fatema Mernissi
4
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: September 27, 1940
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Fes, Morocco
Died: November 30, 2015
 42 
Geir Haarde
(23rd Prime Minister of Iceland)
Geir Haarde
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: April 8, 1951
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Reykjavík, Iceland
 43 
James Miller
(Writer, Philologist)
James Miller
0
Birthdate: February 28, 1947
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
 44 
Haile Menkerios
(Diplomat who has served as the Head of the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU))
Haile Menkerios
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: October 1, 1946
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Eritrea
 45 
Bernard Coard
(Prime Minister of Grenada (14 October 1983 – 19 October 1983))
Bernard Coard
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 10, 1944
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Victoria, Grenada
 46 
Malidoma Patrice Somé
(West African writer and workshop leader, primarily in the field of spirituality)
Malidoma Patrice Somé
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: 1956 AD
Birthplace: Dano, Burkina Faso
 47 
Esther Rome
(Author)
Esther Rome
0
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: September 8, 1945
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Norwich, Connecticut, United States
Died: June 24, 1995