Notable Alumni

Fresno State alumni are setting the pace in education, agriculture, industry and government from our local communities to the state and national levels and, even into space. Our alumni include winners of Oscars, Emmys and Golden Globes in entertainment; space explorers; a U.S. ambassador; a cabinet secretary; university presidents; best-selling authors; top executives for influential corporations; and elected officials. There can be no definitive list, but here are a few Fresno State notables:

* Deceased

Stephen Abas (2006)

Stephen Abas

U.S. Olympian (Wrestling); three-time NCAA champion

Ghassan F. AbulGhanam (1987)

Ghassan F. AbulGhanam

Director of M.I.S. for His Majesty King Abdullah II of the Royal Hashemite Court in Amman, Jordan

Davante Adams (Alumnus)

Davante Adams

Secured a spot with the Green Bay Packers. As a Bulldog, he was the Mountain West Conference; Freshman of the Year; and a freshman All-American. He was the MVP of the 2012 Hawaii Bowl, and as a sophomore in 2013 led the nation with 131 receptions for 1,719 yards and 24 touchdowns.

Theresa Alvillar-Speake (1983, '88)

Theresa Alvillar-Speake

CEO of Speake Consulting Services. Former Presidential appointee (George W. Bush) as Director of the Office of Minority Economic Impact with the Department of Energy.

Mark Arax (1980)

Mark Arax

Author of "In My Father's Name" and "West of the West: Dreamers, Believers, Builders, and Killers in the Golden State;" and co-author of "The King of California: J.G. Boswell and the Making of a Secret American Empire." Former senior writer at "The Los Angeles Times" and now teaches at Fresno State.

Ross Bagdasarian, Jr. *

Ross Bagdasarian

Songwriter and creator of the "Alvin and the Chipmunks" as David Seville

Bo Barrett (Alumnus)

Bo Barrett

Winemaker at Chateau Montelena (Napa Valley), subject of the film "Bottle Shock"

Leslie Bassett (1947, 2009)

Leslie Bassett

Composer and educator who won the 1966 Pulitzer Prize in Music

Marvin Baxter (1962)

Marvin Baxter

California Supreme Court Justice

Todd Beamer (Alumnus) *

Todd Beamer

Passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 93 on 09.11, 2001 who helped overpower terrorists trying to crash land in Washington D.C. Noted for saying "Let's roll!"

Wendell Bell (1948)

Prof. Wendell Bell

A futurist and Professor Emeritus of Sociology at Yale University. In 2005, The World Futures Studies Federation awarded him a Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2008, the Association of Professional Futurists selected Bell's two-volume work "The Foundations of Futures Studies" as one of the 10 most important futures studies books. As a student, served as President of Associated Students. 

Robert Beltran (1978)

Robert Beltran

Played the role of Chakotay, the fearless first officer on Star Trek: Voyager

Laura Berg (1998)

Laura Berg

U.S. Olympian (Softball); Three-time gold medalist 

Bernard Berrian (Alumnus)

Bernard Berrian

NFL wide reciver who played in 2007 Super Bowl with the Chicago Bears

Ervin Sonny Bishop (1961)

Bernard Berrian

Ervin Sonny Bishop (1961), a Native American (Sioux) was co-captain of the Fresno State College football team in 1961. He was the anchor of the line on a team that was undefeated and untied, winning the famous Mercy Bowl Championships against Bowling Green University at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Bishop was selected to All-League and All-American teams. He went on to play eight years in the NFL, was named NFL All-League and played in the 1968 Pro Bowl. Sonny played 110 games as a professional in the NFL.

Bruce Bronzan (1969)

Bruce Bronzan

Member of the California State Assembly from 1982 until his resignation in 1993. Prior to serving in the Assembly, he served on the Fresno County Board of Supervisors from 1975 until his election in 1982

Lee P. Brown (1961, '94)

Lee P. Brown

Former Mayor of Houston, former Atlanta and New York police commissioner

Jim Brumm (1965)

Jim Brumm

Former director of Mitsubishi International

Cruz Bustamante (2003)

Cruz Bustamante

Former California Lieutenant Governor

Joe Cafaro (1969)

Joe Cafaro

Winemaker, Cafaro Cellars (Napa Valley)

David Carr (Alumnus)

David Carr

NFL No. 1 draft pick in 2002, now plays for the San Francisco 49ers

Judy Case (1976)

Judy Case

Registered Nurse and member of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors

Malinda Chouinard (1969, 2007)

Malinda Chouinard

Co-owner of Patagonia outdoor clothing and gear

Roy Christopher (1957, 1961, 2007)

Roy Christopher

Emmy Award-winning television set designer

Charles E. Colby (1966)

Charles ColbyColby (1966) is an electronics engineer who founded Colby Systems Corporation in 1982. He created many firsts in the computer and video industries, and was the first to market portable DOS and Macintosh computers. 

Jac Cole (Alumnus)

Jac Cole

Winemaker, Spring Mountain Vineyard (Napa Valley)

Jim Costa (1974)

Jim Costa

Member of U.S. Congress

Joy Covey (1982) *

Joy Covey

Former Chief Strategy Officer,

Robert E. Coyle (1953) *

Robert E. Coyle

Senior District Judge of the U.S. District Court in Fresno

Sid Craig (1993) *

Sid Craig

Co-founder, CEO and Chairman of the Board, Jenny Craig, Inc., namesake of Craig School of Business

Joseph N. Crowley (1963)

Joseph N. Crowley

President Emeritus, University of Nevada

Johnny Cuviello (1937) *

Johnny Cuviello

Drummer for the Texas Playboys

Nat DiBuduo (1972)

Nat DiBuduo

President, Allied Grape Growers of California

Larry S. Dickenson (1965)

Larry S. Dickenson

Retired Senior VP for sales at Boeing

Edward Diener (1968)

Edward Diener

University of Illinois psychology professor; world authority on science of happiness and life satisfaction

Trent Dilfer (Alumnus)

Trent Dilfer

NFL Analyst for ESPN and 2001 Super Bowl winning quarterback

Henry Ellard (Alumnus)

Henry Ellard

Former NFL wide receiver for LA Rams, Washington Redskins, and New England Patriots

Bill Feightner (1971)

Bill Feightner

Oscar winner and Senior Executive Vice President of EFILM

Manny Fernandez (1997)

Manny Fernandez

Reporter for the "The New York Times"

Jon Gallinetti, U.S. General USMC (Ret.) (1972)

Marine Major General Jon Gallinetti (Ret.)

Former commander of Joint Warfighting Center

Geoffrey Gamble (1965, '71)

Geoffrey Gamble

Retired president of Montana State University

Augie Garrido (1961)

Augie Garrido

University of Texas baseball coach and NCAA winningest coach

Matt Garza (Alumnus)

Matt Garza

Baseball pitcher Milwaukee Brewers; threw a no hitter in 2010

Robert Gauthier (1983)

Robert Gauthier

Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist for "The Los Angeles Times"

Kirk D. Grimes (1980)

Kirk D. Grimes

Group President, Supply Chain, Fluor Corp.

Kenny Guinn (1959, 1965) *

Kenny Guinn

Former two-term governor of Nevada

Robert Hanashiro (Alumnus)

Robert Hanashiro

Photographer, USA Today Sports

Fredrick W. Hatfield (1977)

Fredrick W. Hatfield

Senior Advisor, Patomak Global Partners; Former Commissioner of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Victor Hernandez (1998)

Victor Hernandez

News Futurist with CNN Worldwide

Brad Hill (1977)

Brad Hill

Presiding Justice of the Fifth District Court of Appeal

Hal Huffsmith (1970)

Hal Huffsmith

Senior Vice President for vineyard operations at Trinchero Family Estates/Sutter Home Winery (Napa Valley)

Allan Oakley Hunter (1937) *

Allan Oakley Hunter

Former U.S. Congressman for California's 9th district

Col.l Rick Douglas Husband (1990) *

Colonel Rick Douglas Husband

Mission Commander, Space Shuttle Columbia STS107, 2003

Floyd Hyde (Alumnus)

Floyd Hyde

Former Fresno Mayor, Undersecretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development and President of National Housing Conference

Sam Iacobellis (1952)

Sam Iacobellis

Retired CEO, Rockwell International who led the development of the B1 Bomber

Vida Ilderem (1982)

Vida Ilderem

Vice President, Intel Labs

Lawson Inada (1960)

Lawson Inada

5th poet laureate, State of Oregon

Dean Ing (1956)

Dean Ing

Author best known for science fiction and techno thrillers

Bill Jones (1971)

Bill Jones

Former Secretary of State, Californiar

Bobby Jones (1979)

Bobby Jones

Former MLB pitcher for the New York Mets and San Diego Padres

Dot Jones (Alumna)

Dot Marie Jones

Actress best known for her role on Glee

Jim Kardach (1984)

Jim Jardach

Bluetooth developer for Intel Corp.


Aram Keith (1967)

Aram Keith

Cofounder of The Keith Companies and Director Stantec, Inc.


Lane Kiffin (1999)

Lane Kiffin

Football coach at University of Alabama, Former coach at USC


Emily Kuroda (1977)

Emily Kuroda

Best-known for her role as Mrs. Kim on TV's "Gilmore Girls," but she has had a long carer on stage and screen and is a veteran of East West Players, Los Angeles' premier Asian American theater group.

Larry Levis (1968) *

Larry Levis

He won the United States Award from the International Poetry Forum for his first book of poems, "Wrecking Crew" (1972), which included publications by the University of Pittsburgh Press. The American Academy of Poets named his second book, "The Afterlife" (1976) as Lamont Poetry Selection. His book "The Dollmaker's Ghost" was a winner of the Open Competition of the National Poetry Series. 


Brad Lewis (1980)

Brad Lewis

American film producer, animation director and local politician. He produced DreamWorks' "Antz," and for Pixar, the Oscar-winning "Ratatouille." He also co-directed Disney Pixar's "Cars 2." He is a former mayor of the city of San Carlos, California.


John Loiacono (1985)

John Loiacono

Vice President, Commercial Activities at Midcoast Energy Partners, L.P. Former executive at Adobe Systems, and Sun Microsystems.


Kenneth L. Maddy (1957) *

Kenneth L. Maddy

Former state legislator; namesake of the Maddy Institute at Fresno State

Ryan Mathews (Alumnus)

Ryan Mathews

First round 2010 NFL pick of the San Diego Chargers


Matthew Mazzei (2010, '14)

Matthew Mazzei

Founded the Rainbow Delegation in 2010 and distributed more than 100,000 rainbow bracelets worldwide in less than one year.

Robin McGehee (1998)

Robin McGehee

Nationally-recognized activist; spearheaded Meet in the Middle (California) and co-director of National Equality March (Washington, D.C.) in 2009; co-founded GetEqual the following year.

Thomas McGurn (1969)

Tomas McGurn

Retired corporate executive. His Career included more than 30 years corporate affairs responsibilities with BMW of North America, LLC.


Diana Meehan (1965)

Diana Meehan

Documentary filmmaker; founder of the Archer School for Girls in Los Angeles


Peter Mehas (1963, 2014) *

Peter Mehas

California State University Trustee and former California Secretary of Education


Dennis Morgigno (1975)

Dennis Morgigno

Former Station Manager, Channel 4, San Diego


Steven Nagel (1978)

Colonel Steven Nagel

Col. USAF Ret.;; Former NASA Astronaut


Robert Oliver (1966)

The Hon. Robert Oliver

Fresno County Superior Court judge


Paul H. O'Neill (1960, '99)

Paul H. O'Neill

Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, CEO of Alcoa Corporation


Joan Otomo-Corgel (1972)

Joan Otomo-Corgel

Former California State University Trustee, Periodontal professor at UCLA


Brian Panish (1980)

Brian Panish

Personal injury attorney who won $4.9 billion for clients suing General Motors


Sam Peckinpah (1948) *

Sam Peckinpah

Academy Award nominee as director of "The Wild Bunch"


Domingos Simoes Pereira (1994)

Domingos Pereira

Prime Minister of Guinea-Bissau, a country in West Africa.


Arnold Peter (1991)

Arnold Peter

Entertainment attorney; former Vice President of Universal Studios


Norval Pohl (1965) *

Norval Pohl

Former President, University of North Texas


Charles Poochigian (1972)

Charles Poochigian

Associate justice of the California Court of Appeal and former legislator


Debbie (Koligian) Poochigian (1974)

Debbie Poochigian

Member of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors


Al Radka (1941) *

Al Radka

Fresno radio and television personality


Jose Ramirez (Alumnus)

Jose Ramirez

U.S. Olympian (Boxing). No. 1 ranked amateur boxer at Lightweight in the United States.


Frank Ramos, Sr. (1961)

Frank Ramos

Retired Director, Small Business Programs, Office of the Secretary of Defense


Bob Ritter (1972)

Bob Ritter

Pulitzer Prize winning newspaper editor


Armando O. Rodriguez (1959)

Armando O. Rodriguez

Former Fresno County Superior Court Judge; Former Fresno County Supervisor


Aggie Guerard Rodgers (1967) 

Aggie Guerard Rogers

Known for her work on "Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi," "The Fugitive" and "Beetlejuice"


Phillip V. Sanchez (1957, '72)

Phillip V. Sanchez

Former U.S. Ambassador to Colombia and Honduras


Tammy Savage (Alumna)

Tammy Savage

Manager of Business Development at Microsoft, Corp.


Ed Sbragia (1977)

Ed Sbragia

Founder, winemaker Sbragia Family Vineyards (Sonoma County)

Steven Schmidt (1977)

Steve Schmidt

Assistant Director for Strategic Implementation at NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center, Edwards, CA. He leads efforts to analyze and recommend the appropriate action for the effective integration or transformation of strategy, policy, and planning functions within the Center


Bill Shaughnessy (1987)

Bill Shaughnessy

Former Senior Vice President of Product Management, Yahoo!


Daniel Silva (1983)

Daniel Silva

Best-selling American author of 17 thriller and espionage novels


Alan Simpson (1977)

Alan Simpson

Fresno County Superior Court Judge


Earl Smittcamp (1939, '95)

Earl Smittcamp

Founder of Wawona Frozen Foods


Gary Soto (1974)

Gary Soto

Acclaimed poet, essayist and fiction writer


Roberta Spear (1973) *

Roberta Spear

Award-winning poet


Ashley Swearengin (1994, '97)

Ashley Swearengin

Mayor of Fresno


Jerry Tarkanian (1955) *

Jerry Tarkanian

Men's basketball coach whose UNLV team won the 1990 NCAA Championship; Former Fresno State Basketball Coach


Roger Tatarian (1938) *

Roger Tatarian

Former Vice President and Editor in Chief of United Press International


Jeff Tedford (1983)

Jeff Tedford

Offensive Coordinator for Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Former Head football coach, University of California, Berkeley


Navy Lt. Cmdr. Otis Vincent Tolbert (1985) *

Navy Lt. Cmdr. Otis Vincent Tolbert

Killed in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on the Pentagon

Brian Turner (1994)

Brian Turner

Award winning poet and New York Times online contributor


Robert Vartabedian (1974)

Robert Vartabedian

Author and President of Missouri Western State University


Cornelius "Dutch" Warmerdam (1938) *

Cornelius "Dutch" Warmerdam

World record setting pole vaulter and longtime Bulldogs track and field coach

Nick Watney (Alumnus)

Nick Watney

Professional Golf Association Tour player


Jacqueline West (1983)

Jacqueline West

Fashion and costume designer; Academy Award nominee 


Bob Westenberg (1977)

Bob Westenberg

Tony Award nominated musical theatre actor and acting teacher


Timothy P. White (1970)

Timothy P. White

Chancellor, The California State University


Sherley Anne Williams (1966) *

Sherley Anne Williams

Author, National Book Award nominee and Emmy Award winner

Thomas L. Williams (1970)

Thomas L. Williams

Chairman and CEO, Universal Parks & Resorts


Dennis Wilson (1988)

Dennis Wilson

Wine Buyer of King King Hollywood; Intellectual property attorney best known as the "internet sheriff"


Dennis Woods (1969)

Dennis Woods

President, Chairman and CEO, United Security Bank


Jan Yanehiro (1970)

Jan Yanehiro

Emmy Award-winning broadcast journalist