Saginaw, MI

A Few Famous People From Saginaw, MI

James Logie
Photo by Alicia Steels on Unsplash

Michigan is a big state, and it's the home of many famous and successful people. Saginaw is a city that has also produced many significant people.

Whether it is athletes, musicians, politicians, or inventors, Saginaw has given a bit of everything. This is a look at a few people you may not know come from here, and a few that aren't household names—but have contributed a lot to the world.

Stevie Wonder

It doesn't get more famous than Stevie Wonder. Born in Saginaw in 1950, Stevie Wonder is truly a once-in-a-generation musical artist. He is famous all around the world and his songs have touched people for decades.

He is also one of the best-selling artists of all time. As of right now, he has sold over 100 million albums. Stevie Wonder has recorded in multiple music genres and is also a prolific musician playing most instruments.

He has won an astonishing 22 Grammy Awards and has been nominated for many more, too.

Serena Williams

Serena Williams isn't just one of the best tennis players of all time: she's one of the best athletes ever, too. Born in Saginaw in 1981, there aren't too many other athletes that have accomplished what she has.

Williams has won an astonishing 23 Gram Slam tennis titles. She has been the number one tennis player in the world multiple times, and once held it for over 180 straight weeks.

Along with her sister Venus, she has also won 14 Grand Slam doubles titles. Williams is a truly generational athlete hailing from Saginaw.

Robert William Armstrong

You may not know the name, but Armstrong starred in the movie that could be considered one of the very first blockbusters: King Kong from 1933.

Movies were still a relatively new thing, and King Kong astonished people. Audiences screamed in terror at what they were seeing and it showed how powerful movies could be.

Born in Saginaw in 1890, Armstrong played Carl Denham (the role Jack Black played in the Peter Jackson version). Armstrong also appeared in over 100 movies over the course of his career.

Louis Campau

Hopefully, you know the name Louis Campau, but if not: he was a pioneer that originally settled Saginaw. He also was a key figure in the settlement of Grand Rapids, MI.

Born in Detroit in 1791, Campau was a true pioneer. The cities of Saginaw and Grand Rapids were first set up as trading posts that he helped establish.

He started trading fur as a young boy and the trading post of Saginaw was first established around 1815.

Draymond Green

A true power forward, Green has been a prominent NBA player for years. Born in Saginaw in 1990, Green went to Saginaw High school. He then went on to play college basketball for Michigan State.

He was named captain of the Detroit Free Press All-State Dream Team. Green would then be selected 35th overall in the 2012 NBA draft by the Golden State Warriors.

After having a breakout year, he won his first NBA championship in 2015. The next season, Green made his first all-star team. This was followed by a second NBA championship: and then a third.

Edward G. Begle

This is an interesting one, and it applies to when you went to school. If you remember "new math," Begle was the one responsible for its creation.

Begle was a mathematician who worked for some pretty prestigious places including Stanford, Princeton, Yale, and the University of Michigan.

Begle was born in Saginaw in 1914 and was an important figure in mathematics education.

Robert G. Heft

Another name you may not recognize, but you probably see his work every day. Heft is the designer of the current flag of the United States.

Born in Saginaw in 1942, Heft designed the current flag when he was 17. This was part of a school project (he received a B- for his work) and his design was chosen from more than 1,500 other entrants who were trying to design the new flag.

This is the current 50-star flag and had been presented to President Eisenhower. Heft had a deal with his teacher: if his design was chosen to represent the country, he would be bumped up to an A, which eventually happened.

Final Thoughts

Saginaw has produced many interesting people. Some of them are household names, and some you may have not ever heard of.

Either way, this is a small list of just some of the notable people hailing from the city who went on to do great things.

Lists like this show that it doesn't matter where you come from: everyone is capable of achieving great things.

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Personal trainer, podcaster, Amazon best-selling author. Writing about some health, a little marketing, and a whole lot of 1980s.


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