Colombian

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When we talk of famous Colombians, singer Shakira and actress Sofía Vergara are undoubtedly among the first names that come to our minds. This is not at all surprising given that Columbians are well known for their love for dance, music and entertainment, supported by their diverse tradition in the arts. Ethnically diverse, Columbia has a rich cultural heritage as it was originally inhabited by indigenous peoples including the Muisca, Quimbaya, and Tairona. The influence of European culture is also evident as the nation was once under the colonial rule of Spain. Even after gaining independence in the mid-19th century, Colombia faced a century of war, violence and political chaos and was able to gain relative political stability only in the recent decades.
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 1 
Shakira
(Singer-songwriter)
Shakira
84
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: February 2, 1977
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Grammy award winning Colombian pop singer, Shakira is best known for hits like Whenever, Wherever and Hips Don't Lie. One of the most successful Latin American recording artists, she is also one of the world's best-selling music artists. Her first hit album was Pies Descalzos after which she entered the English music market with her big hit album, Laundry Service.

 2 
Pablo Escobar
(Colombian Drug Lord)
Pablo Escobar
160
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: December 1, 1949
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rionegro
Died: December 2, 1993

A notorious Colombian drug lord, Pablo Escobar was the founder and leader of the infamous Medellín Cartel. His drug cartel monopolized the cocaine trade into the United States and he became one of the wealthiest criminals ever in history. Dubbed "The King of Cocaine", he left behind a controversial legacy upon his death at the age of 44.

 3 
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
(Nobel Prize Winner in Literature)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
27
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: March 6, 1927
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Aracataca, Colombia
Died: April 17, 2014

Nobel Prize-winning Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, also known as “Gabo,” is remembered as one of the most prominent figures of the magic realism literary style. His novels One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera have achieved cult status. He previously worked as a journalist.

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 4 
Sofia Vergara
(Actress)
Sofia Vergara
45
Birthdate: July 10, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Sofia Vergara is a Colombian-American actress, model, and TV producer. She is one of the highest-paid actresses in American TV. She rose to fame in the late 1990s as a TV host. She began gaining popularity as an actress in the 2000s and appeared in many TV shows and films. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including an NAACP Image Award.

 5 
Radamel Falcao
(Colombian Football Player Who Plays as a Forward)
Radamel Falcao
28
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 10, 1986
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Colombia

Radamel Falcao is a Colombian football player who has been playing for the national football team since 2007. He is the all-time top scorer for the Colombia national team. Nicknamed The Tiger, Falcao is often counted among the greatest Colombian football players of all time. Radamel Falcao is also considered one of the best strikers of his generation.

 6 
James Rodríguez
(Colombian Professional Football Player Who Plays as an Attacking Midfielder)
James Rodríguez
30
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: July 12, 1991
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Cúcuta, Colombia

James Rodríguez is a versatile football player adept at playing as a central midfielder, playmaker, and winger. At the initial stages of his career, he was counted among the best young international players. He made a major impact during the 2014 FIFA World Cup where he won the Golden Boot for scoring the most number of goals.

 7 
John Leguizamo
(Comedian & Actor Know for His Role in 'Super Mario Bros' as 'Luigi')
John Leguizamo
16
Birthdate: July 22, 1960
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

John Leguizamo is a popular stand-up comedian and actor who is credited with voicing Sid the Sloth in the Ice Age film series. Over the years, John Leguizamo has also played a major role in helping the Hispanic community and has been honored by organizations, such as the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors.

 8 
Sebastián Marroquín
(Son of Pablo Escobar)
Sebastián Marroquín
28
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: February 24, 1977
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
Sebastián Marroquín is the son of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar. He and his family fled to Mozambique after Pablo’s death, and then to Argentina, where he dropped “Escobar” from his name. He owns an organic clothing line and has written a book and contributed to a documentary about Pablo.
 9 
Griselda Blanco
(Colombian Drug Lady of the Medellín Cartel)
Griselda Blanco
48
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: February 15, 1943
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cartagena, Colombia
Died: September 3, 2012
Griselda Blanco, also known as La Madrina and the Black Widow, was the first billionaire female drug lord. As part of the Medellin Cartel, she smuggled cocaine from Colombia into Miami, New York, and Southern California. She spent 15 years in jail and was shot dead by an unidentified motorcyclist.
 10 
Carlos Lehder
(Drug Lord)
Carlos Lehder
23
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: September 7, 1949
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Armenia, Colombia

German-Colombian drug kingpin Carlos Lehder, co-founder of the Medellín Cartel, which smuggled cocaine into the U.S., formed the Muerte a Secuestradores, to fight against the kidnappings of his cartel members. He escaped from the kidnappers but spent a 33-year sentence in the U.S., following which he was released.

 11 
Maluma
(Colombian Singer-Songwriter and Actor Best Known for His Albums ‘Magia’ and ‘Pretty Boy, Dirty Boy’)
Maluma
17
Birthdate: January 28, 1994
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

Maluma is a Colombian singer, actor, and songwriter. After developing an interest in music early in his life, Maluma started recording songs at age 16. He then went on to collaborate with many successful artists and is currently among the best-selling Latin music artists, with sales of more than 26 million records worldwide.

 12 
Juan Pablo Montoya
(Colombian Racing Driver)
Juan Pablo Montoya
12
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 20, 1975
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

Juan Pablo Montoya is a Colombian racing driver who currently competes for DragonSpeed Racing in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. In 1998, Montoya won the Formula 3000 International Championship title. The following year, he went on to win the CART FedEx Championship Series. In October 2009, Juan Pablo Montoya was named in Times Online's Top 50 Formula One Drivers list.

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 13 
Omayra Sánchez
(Victim of Nevado del Ruiz Volcano)
Omayra Sánchez
15
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: August 29, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Armero
Died: November 16, 1985

Omayra Sánchez was a Colombian girl who died at age 13. After the Nevado del Ruiz volcano erupted in 1985, a massive lahar demolished her home and Sánchez was trapped in the water beneath the debris of her home. She died after struggling for 60 hours, and has remained a prominent figure in popular culture; she is remembered through music.

 14 
J Balvin
(One of the World's Best-Selling Latin Music Artists Referred to as 'Prince of Reggaeton')
J Balvin
23
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 7, 1985
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

J Balvin is a Colombian singer whose genres include reggaeton, hip hop, and Latin pop. Known as the Prince of Reggaeton, Balvin is one of the highest-selling Latin music artists in the world. He was presented with the Global Icon Award for spreading Latin music worldwide. In 2020, he was named in Time magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People.

 15 
Karol G
(Singer)
Karol G
24
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 14, 1991
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
Karol G is a Colombian singer-songwriter. Well-known for being one of the few women to have dominated the reggaeton scene over the last few years, Karol G is revered in places where reggaeton is popular. She has several prestigious awards under her belt, such as a Latin Grammy Award. She has also received several nominations for Billboard Latin Music Awards.
 16 
Kali Uchis
(American Grammy Award Winning Musician Known for His Debut Album 'Isolation')
Kali Uchis
15
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: July 17, 1994
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Alexandria, Virginia, United States

Kali Uchis is an American singer who sings in English and Spanish languages. Uchis achieved international recognition after the release of her hit debut studio album Isolation. Over the course of her career, Kali Uchis has received several prestigious awards such as the Grammy Award, Billboard Music Award, and American Music Award.

 17 
Carlos Valderrama
(Former Colombian Football Player Who Played as a Midfielder)
Carlos Valderrama
6
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 2, 1961
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Colombia

Carlos Valderrama is a Colombian retired football player whose distinctive hairstyle and technical skills made him popular. Widely regarded as one of the greatest Colombian football players of all time, Valderrama was included in Pelé's FIFA 100 list in 2004. Carlos Valderrama played a prominent role during the 1990s, which is considered the golden era of Colombian football.  

 18 
Lupe Fuentes
(House Music Producer, DJ, and Former Pornographic Actress)
Lupe Fuentes
5
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 27, 1987
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia

Lupe Fuentes had started out as a porn actor, with her own website, at 19. The Colombian artist later stepped into music, joining the group The Ex-Girlfriends. Now a social-media influencer and a house music DJ/producer, Lupe lives in Los Angeles and is married to actor/singer Evan Seinfeld.

 19 
Carlos Valdes
8
Birthdate: April 20, 1989
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia

Carlos Valdes is a Colombian-American actor, dancer, and singer. Valdes is best known for playing Cisco Ramon / Vibe in the popular American superhero TV series, The Flash. He portrays the role in other Arrowverse-related projects as well. A multi-talented personality, Valdes is also an accomplished instrumentalist and songwriter; he plays the piano, guitar, ukulele, percussion, and bass.

 20 
Virginia Vallejo
11
Birthdate: August 26, 1949
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cartago, Valle del Cauca

Virginia Vallejo is a Colombian journalist and author. After Vallejo claimed that many Colombian politicians and presidents were benefiting from the leading cocaine cartels, she was granted asylum in the USA in order to help the DEA and the Justice Department in cases pertaining to the Colombian drug cartels. Her book, Loving Pablo, Hating Escobar, was made into a film.

 21 
Juan Cuadrado
(Colombian Footballer Who Plays as a Midfielder & Defender)
Juan Cuadrado
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 26, 1988
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Necoclí, Colombia

Juan Cuadrado is a Colombian football player who has been representing the Colombia national football team since 2010. Renowned for his pace and dribbling skills, Juan Cuadrado is an important player for his national side. He also currently represents the Juventus Football Club and has won many championship titles for the team.

 22 
Andrés Escobar
(Colombian Footballer Who Played as a Defender)
Andrés Escobar
8
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 13, 1967
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín
Died: July 2, 1994

Andrés Escobar was a Colombian football player who played for the Colombia national team from 1988 to 1994. Dubbed The Gentleman, Escobar is best remembered for his calmness on the pitch and clean style of play. On July 2, 1994, Andrés Escobar was killed in the aftermath of the FIFA World Cup in 1994.

 23 
Jackson Martínez
(Colombian Retired Football Player Who Played as a Striker)
Jackson Martínez
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 3, 1986
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Quibdó

Jackson Martínez is a Colombian retired football player who played for the Colombia national football team from 2009 to 2015. Apart from representing his country in important tournaments like the 2014 FIFA World Cup and Copa Américas, Martínez also played for clubs like Atlético Madrid and Porto. In 2014 and 2015, Martínez was named FC Porto Athlete of the Year.

 24 
Zulay Henao
(Colombian-American Actress Known for Her Films: ‘Illegal Tender’, ‘Fighting’, ‘Takers’ and ‘Boy Wonder’)
Zulay Henao
7
Birthdate: May 29, 1979
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Medellín, Antioquia, Colombia

Colombian-born actor Zulay Henao made headlines for her relationship with Entourage actor Kevin Connolly, after an Instagram post in 2021 declared they were expecting a child. She had plunged into acting after serving in the U.S. Army for 3 years and later gained fame with series such as The Oath.

 25 
David Ospina
(Colombian Football Player Who Plays as a Goalkeeper)
David Ospina
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: August 31, 1988
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Medellin, Colombia

David Ospina is a Colombian football player who plays for the Colombia national football team. Ospina made his national debut in 2007 and is currently the most capped player of Colombia. Apart from representing his country in important tournaments like the FIFA World Cup and Copa Américas, David Ospina has also played for popular clubs like Arsenal and Atlético Nacional.

 26 
Isabella Gomez
7
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: February 9, 1998
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Medellin

Colombia-born American actor Isabella Gomez is best known as the lesbian character Elena Alvarez from the sitcom One Day at a Time. Being an only child of her parents, she mostly grew up watching TV shows and later plunged into acting. She has also appeared in Matador and Modern Family.

 27 
Sebastián Yatra
3
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: October 15, 1994
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Medellin

Colombian pop sensation Sebastián Yatra soared to fame with singled such as Traicionera and Robarte un Beso. Yatra was a promising soccer player in school. He was in the news for his relationship with Argentine singer Tini Stoessel, and their subsequent break-up announcement on Twitter broke their fans’ hearts.

 28 
René Higuita
(Former Colombian Football Player Who Played as a Goalkeeper)
René Higuita
4
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: August 27, 1966
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia

René Higuita is a Colombian retired football player best known for exhibiting a scorpion kick while saving a goal in a friendly against England on 6 September 1995. His high-risk playing style and distinctive hairstyle made him immensely popular around the world. René Higuita is widely regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers in South American history.

 29 
Carmen Villalobos
(Actress, Model)
Carmen Villalobos
2
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: July 13, 1983
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Barranquilla, Colombia

Carmen Villalobos is a Colombian actress best known for her role in the telenovela Sin senos no hay paraíso, for which she won a Your World Award. She started acting as a teenager and initially appeared in small roles in TV shows. As her career progressed, she was able to bag more substantial roles in both TV shows and films.

 30 
Juan Manuel Santos
(President of Colombia)
Juan Manuel Santos
6
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: August 10, 1951
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bogotá

Juan Manuel Santos is a Colombian politician who served as the 32nd president of Colombia. He is credited with co-founding the Social Party of National Unity, which he led to prominence. For his efforts to put an end to Colombia's more than 50-year-long civil war, Santos was honored with the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.

 31 
Juanes
(One of the Best Selling and Grammy Award Winning Colombian Hard Rock Musician)
Juanes
2
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 9, 1972
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Carolina del Príncipe, Colombia

Juanes is a Colombian musician best known for his association with the rock band Ekhymosis. Having sold over 15 million albums worldwide, Juanes is one of the best-selling artistes of his generation. Over the course of his illustrious career, Juanes has won many prestigious awards such as Latin Grammy Awards and Grammy Awards.

 32 
Fernando Botero
(Painter, Sculptor, Artist)
Fernando Botero
3
Birthdate: April 19, 1932
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
 33 
Juan Pablo Raba
(Best Known for His Role as ‘Gustavo Gaviria’ in the TV Series ‘Narcos’)
Juan Pablo Raba
3
Birthdate: January 14, 1977
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia

Juan Pablo Raba is a Colombian actor best known for his portrayal of Gustavo Gaviria in the American crime drama TV series, Narcos. Over the years, he has established himself in the American TV industry. Apart from being an actor, Raba takes an active part in the campaigns organized by several animal and human rights organizations.

 34 
Carlos Bacca
(Colombian Football Player Who Plays as a Striker)
Carlos Bacca
9
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 8, 1986
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Puerto Colombia, Colombia

Carlos Bacca is a Colombian football player who represented the Colombia national football team from 2010 to 2018. He was part of the team that won the bronze medal at the Copa América Centenario in 2016. He also represented the team at the 2014 and 2018 World Cups. Carlos Bacca is renowned for his pace, aggression, strength, and concentration.

Catalina Sandino Moreno
4
Birthdate: April 19, 1981
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bogota, Colombia
 36 
Nairo Quintana
(Considered the Best Colombian Road Cyclist of All Time)
Nairo Quintana
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: February 4, 1990
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cómbita, Colombia

Nairo Quintana is a Colombian racing cyclist. A specialist climber, Quintana is renowned for his ability to launch attacks on ascents of steep gradient and his stamina to endure others' attacks. Considered the best Colombian road cyclist of all time, Nairo Quintana is also counted among the most successful and popular stage-racing riders of his generation.

 37 
Jon Gries
(Actor)
Jon Gries
3
Birthdate: June 17, 1957
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Glendale, California, USA
 38 
Diana Turbay
(Colombian Journalist Who Was Kidnapped and by the Medellín Cartel and Later Killed)
Diana Turbay
3
Birthdate: March 9, 1950
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bogota
Died: January 25, 1991

Diana Turbay was a Colombian journalist best remembered as the victim of the Medellín Cartel, a highly organized Colombian terrorist organization and drug cartel, which kidnapped her in 1990. She then became a victim of a botched rescue attempt by the Colombia National Police in which she was killed. Turbay's story has been adapted into a book and TV series.

 39 
Ximena Duque
(Colombian Actress and Model.)
Ximena Duque
6
Birthdate: January 30, 1985
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia
Colombian-born actor Ximena Duque began her career with the reality show Protagonistas de Novela and then the telenovela Soñar no cuesta nada. The mother of three has also won several Premios Tu Mundo awards. She was in the news when she contracted COVID-19 during her third pregnancy. 
 40 
Paula Garces
(Actress)
Paula Garces
4
Birthdate: March 20, 1974
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Medellín, Colombia
 41 
Carlos Vives
(Colombian Singer Who is Known for His Fusion of Pop Music and Traditional Colombian Musical Styles)
Carlos Vives
3
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: August 7, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Santa Marta, Colombia

Carlos Vives is a Colombian actor, singer, and songwriter. He is best known for his fusion of pop music and traditional Colombian musical styles, such as champeta, cumbia, vallenato, and porro. Carlos Vives has won important awards like the Grammys, Latin Grammy Awards, and Premios Nuestra Tierra. In 2020, he was inducted into the Billboard Latin Music Hall of Fame.

 42 
Red Velvet
(Colombian-American Professional Wrestler)
Red Velvet
7
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 3, 1992
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Miami, Florida, United States

Red Velvet is a professional wrestler who is currently signed to AEW. Prior to joining All Elite Wrestling, Velvet was part of the independent circuit from 2016 to 2021. She was also a part of the Fighting Evolution Wrestling promotion where she held the FEW Women's Championship title. Apart from being a professional wrestler, Red Velvet is also a dancer.

 43 
Luis Garavito
(Murder Convict Who Received the Lengthiest Sentence in the History of Colombia)
Luis Garavito
26
Listed In: Criminals
Birthdate: January 25, 1957
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Génova
 44 
Samuel E. Wright
8
Birthdate: November 20, 1946
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Camden, South Carolina, United States

Two-time Tony-nominated actor Samuel E. Wright is best known for his performances in The Lion King and The Tap Dance Kid. Fans also know him as the voice of Sebastian in The Little Mermaid, and his track Under the Sea, from the movie, won an Academy Award.

 45 
Luis Muriel
(Colombian Football Player Who Plays as a Forward)
Luis Muriel
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 16, 1991
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Santo Tomás

Luis Muriel is a Colombian football player who has been playing for the national football team since 2012. He helped his team win the bronze medal at the 2021 Copa América. A versatile player, Luis Muriel is renowned for his pace, agility, dribbling skills, and creativity.

 46 
Juan Fernando Quintero
(Colombian Footballer Who Plays as a Midfielder)
Juan Fernando Quintero
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: January 18, 1993
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barranquilla

Juan Fernando Quintero is a Colombian football player who has been representing the national football team since 2012. An attacking midfielder, Quintero is renowned for his creativity, agility, and speed. He is currently signed with the Argentine football club River Plate, where his style of play has drawn comparisons to that of Lionel Messi.

 47 
Danna García
(Colombian Model and Actress)
Danna García
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 2, 1978
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Guadalajara

Danna García is a Colombian model and actress best known for her portrayal of leading roles in popular telenovelas in Mexico, Colombia, and the US. García achieved popularty in the early 2000s when she starred in a Colombian telenovela titled Pasión de Gavilanes, which was released internationally as Hidden Passion.

 48 
Nina García
(Fashion Journalist)
Nina García
2
Birthdate: May 3, 1965
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Barranquilla

Nina García is a Colombian-American fashion journalist. She is the current editor-in-chief of Elle and has been a judge on the Bravo/Lifetime reality TV program Project Runway. She has a degree in fashion merchandising from the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) and has worked with the prominent fashion designer Marc Jacobs. She is the author of four books. 

 49 
Faustino Asprilla
(Colombian Former Football Player Who Played as a Forward and Attacking Midfielder)
Faustino Asprilla
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 10, 1969
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tuluá

Faustino Asprilla is a Colombian retired football player who played for the Colombia national football team from 1993 to 2001. Widely regarded as one of the best Colombian footballers of all time, Faustino Asprilla represented his national team in important tournaments like the Summer Olympics, Copa America, and FIFA World Cup. 

 50 
Iván Duque
(President of Colombia)
Iván Duque
8
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 1, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bogotá, Colombia
Hard working and resilient, Columbians have emerged from their difficult past to become one of the most vibrant peoples in the world. While the likes of Shakira have taken the entertainment world by storm, others like artist Miguel Gómez, actor John Leguizamo, and businessman Fuad Ricardo Char Abdala have carved a niche for themselves in their respective fields. This section provides you information about the life and works of famous Colombians.