Celebrities That Came From Your Home State


Although California is the home of the entertainment capital of the world, many of our favorite celebs come from all over.

In fact, all 50 states have produced plenty of famous people: actors, musicians, TV personalities, athletes, and more.

If you thought your home state was mundane, think again! Here are some of the biggest celebrities from every state — scroll down to see who grew up in your’s.

Alabama – Lionel Richie

This singer-songwriter grew up in Tuskegee, Alabama before becoming a founding member of the Commodores. Of course, his solo career made him one of the world’s best-selling artists of all time.

Alaska – Jewel

This famous singer-songwriter grew up in Homer, Alaska. She spent her time singing and yodeling as a duo with her father, a local musician. Of course, she rocketed to fame in the 90s with her debut album, Pieces of You. Surely you remember “Who Will Save Your Soul” and “Foolish Games.”

Arizona – Lynda Carter

Wonder Woman herself was born in Phoenix, Arizona. Before her successful acting career, though, Lynda Carter became Miss Phoenix, Miss Arizona, and then was crowned Miss World USA.

Arkansas – Billy Bob Thornton

This award-winning actor and director was born in the very small town of Alpine, Arkansas, and reportedly lived in a shack with no electricity or plumbing. He spent some time laying asphalt for the Arkansas State Transportation Department and dropped out of college before hitting Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting.

California – Too Many to Name

There are a lot of famous people from California, so there’s just no way to pick just one! After all, this state is home to the entertainment capital of the world. Snoop Dogg, the Kardashian-Jenner clan, Leonardo DiCaprio, Billie Eilish, Tom Hanks, Clint Eastwood, Katy Perry, Bruce Lee, and even Marilyn Monroe were all born in the sunshine state.

Colorado – Tim Allen

Before starring in Home Improvement and voicing Buzz Lightyear in the Toy Story franchise, Tim Allen was raised in Denver, Colorado before his family relocated to Michigan.

Connecticut – Katharine Hepburn

Iconic movie star Katharine Hepburn came from the Constitution State. She was born in Hartford, Connecticut before becoming a leading lady in Hollywood for more than 60 years. Connecticut was home for Hepburn throughout her life, and was even buried in the state.

Delaware – Ryan Phillippe

Even though Ryan Phillippe’s family had no background in the entertainment industry, he had an interest in acting from a young age. He was spotted by a casting agent in a barbershop, sparking his career. His big break came on One Life to Live, which gained him attention in the industry for playing the first gay teenager in a TV series.

Florida – Ariana Grande

Ariana Grande is one of the world’s biggest pop stars right now, but did you know that she hails from Boca Raton, Florida? As a child, she performed with the Fort Lauderdale Children’s Theater before moving to Los Angeles to pursue her music career.

Georgia – Laurence Fishburne

Laurence Fishburne is extremely talented and has an extensive career, but he’ll always be Morpheus from The Matrix to me! This award-winning actor and producer was born in Augusta, Georgia. It wasn’t until after his parents divorced that he moved to Brooklyn, New York.

Hawaii – Bette Midler

Before The Divine Miss M made her Broadway debut, she was born and raised in the beautiful state of Hawaii. In high school, she was voted both “Most Talkative” and “Most Dramatic,” so it’s no wonder that she wound up an iconic and award-winning actress.

Idaho – Aaron Paul

We all know Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad, but he didn’t always live in Cali. He was raised in Emmett, Idaho, where he discovered his love of acting through performing in church plays. After graduating high school, he and his mother moved to Los Angeles so he could pursue a career in acting.

Illinois – Betty White

Everyone’s ageless Hollywood superstar was originally born in Oak Park, Illinois. Her family eventually moved to Los Angeles, where Betty White would break into show business. She currently has the television career of any entertainer, spanning more than 80 years.

Indiana – Michael Jackson

The King of Pop was born over 2,000 miles away from Los Angeles, in Gary, Indiana. I’m sure you already know that it was with his family’s musical troupe, the Jackson 5, that Michael Jackson was thrust into the spotlight. Eventually, Michael Jackson became one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century and one of the greatest entertainers ever.

Iowa – Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher originally grew up in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and attended the University of Iowa. It wasn’t until he won a modeling contest that he decided to drop out and head to New York. Iowa still holds a special place in Kutcher’s life, though. He once said that he “owes everything of who I am to where I come from.”

Kansas – Kirstie Alley

This accomplished and award-winning actress and spokesmodel hails from Wichita, Kansas. Although she made her film debut in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan in 1982, you’ve undoubtedly seen her in Drop Dead GorgeousCheers, or Look Who’s Talking.

Kentucky – Jennifer Lawrence

According to Jennifer’s big brother, Ben Lawrence, “Louisville’s a blue-collar town. It’s not known for producing movie stars.” Well, it looks like Jennifer Lawrence had to change that! She was interested in acting early on, and managed to snag a modeling gig in NY at just 14. It paid off (lliterally) because she was the highest-paid actress in the world in 2015 and 2016.

Louisiana – Ellen DeGeneres

Comedian-turned-talk-show-host Ellen DeGeneres has won 30 Emmys and 20 People’s Choice Awards (more than any other person). But before she found fame, DeGeneres was born and raised in Metairie, Louisiana. She also attended the University of New Orleans, though she dropped out to pursue a career in stand-up.

Maine – Stephen King

Stephen King has sold more than 350 million copies of his books, and they’ve been adapted into films, TV shows, miniseries, and comic books. But before he saw widespread success, he was writing a column in the school newspaper at the University of Maine. These days, Stephen King still calls Maine home.

Maryland – Jada Pinkett Smith

These days, Jada is busy starring in movies like Bad Moms and running the Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation. However, Jada was originally born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. She went on to study at the Baltimore School for the Arts and the North Carolina School of the Arts, before heading to Los Angeles.

Massachusetts – Mark Wahlberg

Mark Wahlberg was raised in Boston, and he’s not shy about it. Back in the day, Wahlberg managed to get into his fair share of trouble. The star admits, “Growing up, I think I was arrested 20-odd times by the Boston police.” Luckily for all of us, he emerged as rapper “Marky Mark,” starting his career in entertainment. The rest is history.

Michigan – Kid Rock

Kid Rock, aka Robert James Ritchie, rocketed to fame with hits like “Bawitdaba” and “Cowboy.” But before seeing national success, though, he used to battle rap against the likes of Eminem while coming up in Detroit.

Minnesota – Bob Dylan

You know him as the legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, but he was born Robert Zimmerman in Minnesota. His 1965 album titled Highway 61 Revisited is actually a nod to the road that took Dylan from his home in Minnesota to southern cities known for musical roots, such as New Orleans.

Mississippi – Oprah Winfrey

Though Oprah is a wildly famous media mogul these days, she had humble beginnings on a small farm in Kosciusko, Mississippi. She spent her time growing a vegetable garden, milking cows, and curing meat in a smokehouse.

Missouri – John Goodman

Could you imagine Roseanne without patriarch Dan Conner? Well, as he grew up in Missouri, Goodman actually had a promising future in football. It wasn’t until he suffered an injury while playing for Southwest Missouri State University that a career in acting came into play.

Montana – David Lynch

You know this oddball director for EraserheadTwin Peaks, and The Elephant Man, but he says he’s “just a guy from Missoula, Montana.” He moved around a lot since his father was a research scientist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, but he still has an affinity for “Big Sky Country.”

Nebraska – Marlon Brando

A true cultural influence on 20th-century film, Marlon Brando saw a lengthy 60-year career as an actor and film director. But even after making it big, he still headed back to his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska every now and again.

Nevada – Jimmy Kimmel

Though he was actually born in NYC, talk show host Jimmy Kimmel moved to Sin City when he was a kid. It wasn’t long before he started his career in entertainment. He worked as a radio station DJ while still in high school.

New Hampshire – Adam Sandler

The Granite State has granite and great views in the fall, but it’s also the home of Adam Sandler. Though he was born in NYC, he grew up in Manchester, New Hampshire after moving there at the age of 6. After becoming a Saturday Night Live cast member, he went on to star in plenty of Hollywood feature films.

New Jersey – John Travolta

John Travolta rose to fame in the 1970s, thanks to the TV series Welcome Back, Kotter, plus starring in box office hits Saturday Night Fever and Grease. It didn’t end there, though. He has continued to see success with movies like Pulp FictionSwordfish, and Hairspray. However, he most recently received his first Primetime Emmy Award as producer of The People v. O.J. Simpson, the first season of American Crime Story.

New Mexico – Demi Moore

Roswell, New Mexico might be famous for the Roswell UFO incident, but it is also the birthplace of Brat Pack actress Demi Moore. She moved to West Hollywood at the age of 15, and began her career in entertainment soon after.

New York – Jennifer Lopez

It should come as no surprise that “Jenny From the Block” is from New York. She’s loud and proud about her Bronx roots.

North Carolina – Michael Jordan

Though NBA superstar Michael Jordan was born in Brooklyn, he spent most of his formative years in Wilmington, North Carolina. Jordan’s heart is in the Tar Heel State, though. He played for the University of North Carolina before heading to the NBA. And these days, he’s the owner of the Charlotte Hornets.

North Dakota – Josh Duhamel

Actor Josh Duhamel really loves his home state of North Dakota — he even became the face of North Dakota Tourism’s advertising campaign.

Ohio – John Legend

John Legend honed his skills by singing in the local church choir as a kid in Springfield, Ohio. As an adult, he continues to return to his home state, even helping open the John Legend Theater at the Springfield Center of Innovation.

Oklahoma – Blake Shelton

Although country music star Blake Shelton moved to Nashville, Tennessee to pursue his singing career, he was raised in Ada, Oklahoma. He’s still an Oklahoma boy through-and-through, though. He’s got a ranch and a lake house in the state, and even opened up a bar called Ole Red.

Oregon – Matt Groening

It’s no secret that Matt Groening based the fictional town of Springfield in The Simpsons on both Springfield, Oregon and his hometown of Portland, Oregon.

Pennsylvania – Will Smith

Will Smith
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

When the Fresh Prince raps “In west Philadelphia, born and raised,” they weren’t just lyrics. He’s come a long way since his modest fame as a rapper in the late 1980s, but he’ll always be from Philly.

Rhode Island – Debra Messing

You likely couldn’t tell that Debra Messing is from Rhode Island. The actress spent three years studying how to lose her distinct Rhode Island accent while training to be an actor at New York University.

South Carolina – Darius Rucker

Singer-songwriter gained fame as the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist of the band Hootie & the Blowfish. But before that, Rucker grew up in Charleston, South Carolina, where he developed his talent by singing in the church and high school choir. Hootie & the Blowfish formed during Rucker’s time at the University of South Carolina.

South Dakota – Bob Barker

Although game show host Bob Barker was born in Washington, he spent most of his youth on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. He originally hosted Truth or Consequences from 1956 to 1974, but he’s most-known for hosting The Price is Right from 1972 to 2007 — making it the longest-running daytime game show in North American television history.

Tennessee – Dolly Parton

This award-winning superstar was born in a one-room cabin in Tennessee, to what she describes as a “dirt poor” family. After some success as a songwriter for others, Dolly Parton blessed us all with her talents as a singer-songwriter. Dolly is also an actress, author, record producer, businesswoman, and humanitarian — really, is there anything Dolly can’t do?

Texas – Beyoncé

Queen Bey was raised in the great state of Texas. As a child, she competed in and won multiple local talent shows, and ultimately found herself on Star Search. You likely knew she’s from Houston, though, thanks to her hometown catchphrase, “H-Town Vicious.” She’s also shown up whenever her hometown needed her, like helping Hurricane Harvey victims.

Utah – Roseanne Barr

Sitcom star Roseanne Barr might be controversial, but she’s certainly an icon. And this icon was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. Though her family was Jewish, Barr’s first taste of the stage came from “lecturing on the faith to Mormon congregations throughout Utah and becoming like a little preaching rock star.”

Vermont – Susan Bennett

You might not be familiar with her name, but I know you’ve heard Susan Bennett’s voice. She was formerly a backup singer for Roy Orbison, and her voice has been in ads for big companies like VISA, Coca-Cola, and Ford. However, you likely know her best as the original voice of Apple’s virtual assistant, Siri!

Virginia – Pharrell Williams

This “Happy” singer was raised in Virginia Beach, and he’s even been given a key to the city. The state of Virginia even dubbed June 7th as “Pharrell Williams Day.” And though he doesn’t live there anymore, he told NPR, “I’m just so happy that Virginia gave me my roots.”

Washington – Jimi Hendrix

Widely regarded as one of the most influential guitarists in history, Jimi Hendrix called himself a “local west coast Seattle boy.” While growing up in Seattle, Washington, he first began playing guitar at age 15. By the time he reached his mid-20s, he was the world’s highest-paid performer.

West Virginia – Brad Paisley

Country music singer-songwriter Brad Paisley is loud and proud of his West Virginia roots. He often returns to his home state to attend West Virginia University games, and even puts on performances at half-time.

Wisconsin – Chris Farley

Funny man Chris Farley was known for making his Catholic school peers laugh in Madison, Wisconsin. After graduation, he studied theatre at Marquette University just down the road in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. After his death, the Wisconsin Historical Museum honored him with an exhibit.

Wyoming – Jackson Pollock

Wyoming was the birthplace of infamous painter Jackson Pollock — a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement. Surely you’ve seen the results of his “action painting,” his technique of using his whole body to pour and splash paint onto a horizontal surface. In 2016, his painting titled Number 17A reportedly sold for $200 million.