If you read last week’s Inland 360, then you got a peek at some of the notable alumni from the University of Idaho. But the Vandals aren’t the only ones with famous and semi-famous graduates.Washington State University has its own share and, arguably, they are a bit more known to the general population. It is a bigger school after all, and as much as it may hurt my Vandal pride, the Cougars have it going on in the famous alumni department. Here are a few:
1. Edward R. Murrow
Class of 1930
Arguably one of the most famous WSU alumni, Murrow is known as the father of TV news broadcasting. He first rose to prominence as a World War II radio correspondent and his broadcasts were heard by millions of listeners in the U.S. and became familiar with his sign off “good night, and good luck.” He moved on to the CBS evening news and eventually became best known for a segment on Sen. Joseph McCarthy that contributed to his political downfall.
2. Sherman Alexie
Class of 1994
A Native American author, poet and filmmaker, Alexie is perhaps not a super well-known alumni but an important one nonetheless. He is notable in the literary world but perhaps not too much outside of it. However, his collection of short stories titled “The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven” he later adapted into a movie called “Smoke Signals,” which took top honors at the Sundance Film Festival.
3. Gary Larson
Class of 1972
The man behind the syndicated “Far Side” comics, Gary Larson’s work is well known by many folks. I grew up reading his comics and I think most people have a deep appreciation for his unique, dry brand of humor.
4. Patrick F. McManus
Studied at Washington State College before it became WSU
Another humorist and outdoor writer, McManus is a columnist and author of several books based loosely on his life growing up in Sandpoint. His books have hit the New York Times best-seller list more than once.
5. Paul Allen
Class of 1977
His name probably doesn’t ring a bell in the same way Bill Gates does, but Paul Allen was a co-founder of Microsoft and actually was the one who came up with the name “Micro-Soft,” according to a 1995 Fortune Magazine article. He is worth around $17.4 billion and is the 51st richest person in the entire world. Allen is known for his generous philanthropy and is also the owner of the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trail Blazers and part owner of the Seattle Sounders.
Have an idea for a listicle? Moroney may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (208) 848-2232.