Lots of laurels, but no resting

Thinkers, doers, creators, leaders. In every profession, industry and endeavor, our alumni are engaged at the top of their game. Take a closer look at the selection below, and discover how Brandeisians are changing the world.
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Activism and Public Service

  • Deborah Bial ’87, education strategist; founder and president, Posse Foundation (MacArthur Fellow)
  • Josh Block ’95, CEO, The Israel Project
  • Alisa Gravitz ’77, CEO and president, Green America
  • Devika Mahadevan ’00, CEO, Mumbai Mobile Creches
  • Bobby Sager ’76, philanthropist
  • Rakesh Rajani ’89, director of civic engagement and government, Ford Foundation
  • Julieanna Richardson ’76, founder, The HistoryMakers
  • Jay Ruderman ’88, president, Ruderman Family Foundation
  • Sam Vaghar ’08, executive director and co-founder, Millennium Campus Network

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Arts and Entertainment

  • Janice Burgess ‘74, creator and executive producer, “The Backyardigans”
  • David Crane ’79 and Marta Kauffman ’78, co-creators, “Friends”
  • Tony Goldwyn ’82, film and TV actor and director (“Scandal,” “Ghost”)
  • Josh Gondelman ’07, comedian and writer, “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
  • Debra Granik ’85, film director and screenwriter (“Winter’s Bone,” “Down to the Bone”)
  • Bonita Hamilton, MFA’04, actress (“Lion King”)
  • Michael Kaiser ’75, co-chair, IMG Artists; president emeritus, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
  • Myq Kaplan ’00, comedian
  • Jonathan Landau ’68, music producer and manager for Bruce Springsteen
  • Gary Lassin ’77, founder, Stoogeum (Three Stooges museum)
  • Debra Messing ’90, Emmy Award-winning actor (“Will & Grace,” “Mysteries of Laura,” “Smash”)
  • Anand Patwardhan ’72, documentary filmmaker
  • Theresa Rebeck, MA’83, MFA’86, PhD’89, Broadway playwright
  • Rosemary Rodriguez ’83, TV director (“Law & Order,” “The Good Wife”)
  • Kimerly Rorschach ’78, director, Seattle Art Museum
  • Michael Sugar ’95, movie producer (“Spotlight,” “Collateral Beauty,” “The Fifth Estate”)
  • Gary Tinterow ’76, director, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
  • Adam Weinberg ’77, Alice Pratt Brown Director, Whitney Museum of Modern Art, New York

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Authors

  • Mitch Albom ’79, “Tuesdays With Morrie,” “Five People You Meet in Heaven”
  • Stacey Ballis ’92, “Inappropriate Men,” “Sleeping Over,” “Room for Improvement”
  • Edward Dolnick ’74, “The Clockwork Universe,” “The Forger's Spell,” “The Rescue Artist”
  • Ha Jin, MA’89, PhD’93, “Waiting,” “War Trash,” “Nanjing Requiem”
  • Jesse Kellerman, MFA’03, “Sunstroke,” “Genius,” “Trouble,” “The Executor”

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Business and Industry

  • Steve Cloobeck ’83, CEO, Diamond Resorts International
  • Jonathan Davis ’75, CEO and founder, The Davis Companies
  • Amy Kessler ’89, MA’90, senior VP and head of longevity reinsurance, Prudential
  • Brian Lash ’78, founder, Target Logistics
  • Olaf Olafsson ’85, executive vice president of international and corporate strategy, Time Warner
  • Robert F.X. Sillerman ’69, businessman and media entrepreneur
  • Simon Sinek ’95, business consultant and author (“Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action”)
  • Sam Sisakhti, MA’07, CEO, UsTrendy
  • Perry Traquina ’78, former CEO, Wellington Management investment firm
  • Lan Xue ’90, MA’91, founder, Hong Kong-based hedge fund
  • Tom Watanabe ’73, former president/CEO, Nikken Global

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Education

  • Arthur Caplan ’71,  head of the Division of Bioethics, New York University Langone Medical Center
  • Angela Davis ’65, former director, feminist studies department, University of California, Santa Cruz; political and social activist
  • Deborah Lipstadt, MA’72, PhD’76, Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies, Emory University (profiled in movie “Denial”)
  • Michael Sandel ’75, Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Government, Harvard University
  • Jonathan Sarna ’75, MA’75, Joseph H. and Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish History, Brandeis University
  • Fernando Torres-Gil, PhD’76, professor and director of Center for Policy Research on Aging, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
  • Robert Zimmer ’68, president, University of Chicago
  • Julian Zelizer ’91, professor of history and public affairs, Princeton University; political commentator

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Government and Politics

  • Geir Haarde ’73, Iceland’s U.S. ambassador; former prime minister
  • Michael Horowitz ’84, inspector general, U.S. Department of Justice
  • Lisa Kubiske ’75, deputy assistant secretary for international finance and development, U.S. Department of State
  • Haile Menkerios ’70, head of United Nations Office to the African Union and special representative to the African Union
  • Dimitrij Rupel, PhD’76, former minister of foreign affairs, Slovenia
  • Daniel Shapiro ’91, former U.S. ambassador to Israel

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Journalism and Media

  • Paula Apsell ’69, senior executive producer, “Nova,” and director of WGBH-TV science unit (Emmy Award winner)
  • Thomas Friedman ’75, foreign affairs columnist, The New York Times (Pulitzer Prize winner), and author (“The World is Flat,” “Flat, Hot, and Crowded”)
  • Walt Mossberg ’69, information technology columnist and founder, Re/Code (Loeb award winner)
  • Guy Raz ’96, host of “TED Radio Hour,” National Public Radio
  • Greg Zuckerman ’88, Wall Street Journal special write and author (“The Frackers,” “The Greatest Trade “Ever”)

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Science and Mathematics

  • Paul Anastas, MA’87, PhD’89, director, Center for Green Chemistry and Green Engineering, Yale University
  • Debbie Berebichez ’96, physicist, STEM advocate
  • Bonnie Berger ’83, professor of applied math and computer science, MIT; first woman in MIT math department to earn tenure
  • Adam Cheyer ’88, co-founder, Siri voice-activated personal assistant
  • Susan Band Horowitz, PhD’63, co-inventor of cancer-fighting drug Taxol
  • Leslie Lamport, MA'71, PhD'72, principal researcher, Microsoft and developer of LaTeX (Turing Award winner)
  • Roderick MacKinnon ’78, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Professor, The Rockefeller University (Nobel laureate)
  • Eve Marder ’69, Victor and Gwendolyn Beinfield Professor of Neuroscience, Brandeis; member of advisory board for President Barack Obama’s BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) initiative
  • Edward Witten ’71, Charles Simonyi Professor of Mathematical Physics, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton University (Fields Medal winner)

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Sports

  • Nelson Figueroa ’98, former pitcher, Major League Baseball; TV analyst, SNY
  • Jeffrey Lurie, PhD’87, owner, Philadelphia Eagles
  • Tim Morehouse ’00, Olympic medal-winning fencer