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 April 14

by Carolina

By San Antonio Current Staff

High school bragging rights are no joke in San Antonio, and there’s no better way to up the ante than laying claim to famous fellow alumni.

From TV stars to sports hall of famers, you’d be surprised by the big-name celebrities who got their education in the Alamo City. We rounded up 28 notable graduates with whom you just might share an alma mater.

Jared Padalecki, Madison High School


Jared Padalecki’s breakout role may have been playing Dean Forester on Gilmore Girls, but he’ll likely always be remembered for his 15-season run as Sam Winchester on Supernatural. Now, Padalecki stars as the famed Texas Ranger formerly played by Chuck Norris in the TV series reboot Walker. The actor was born in the Alamo City in 1982 and graduated from Madison HS and now calls Austin home.


Photo via The CW / Walker

Shaquille O’Neal, Robert G. Cole High School

Believe it or not, famed basketball player, possessor of mad hip-hop skills and star of the whimsical 90’s genie comedy Kazaam Shaquille O’Neal went to high school right here in the Alamo City. After starting high school in Germany due to his stepfather’s military career, his family moved to San Antonio, where he lead the team at Robert G. Cole High School to a 68-1 record over two years, as well as a state championship win.


Photo via Instagram / shaq

Robert Rodriguez, St. Anthony High School


Robert Rodriguez has been repping SA since being born here in 1968. The director, who went ot St. Anthony High School, is known for everything from Machete to Spy Kids, and announced in 2020 that he’d directed an episode for the second season of the hit Disney+ series The Mandalorian.


Photo via Twitter / Rodriguez

Anthony Alabi, Antonian College Preparatory High School


Born in San Antonio in 1981, Anthony Alabi went on to attend Antonian College Preparatory High School before moving on to play college football at Texas Christian University. First snagged by the Miami Dolphins in the 2005 NFL draft, Alabi played professional football untill 2009, when he retired to pursue acting. Most recently, Alabi has been featured on Disney’s Raven’s Home as Coach Spitz and starred opposite Tia Mowry-Hardict in Netflix’s Family Reunion.


Photo via Netflix / Family Reunion

James Roday Rodriguez, Taft High School

Psych star James Roday Rodriguez recently re-embraced his Latino heritage by retaking his surrname after performing for years under the name James Roday. The San Antonio native was born here in 1976 and went to Taft HS before making his name playing a fake psychic detective on the long-running USA comedy series for eight seasons and two movies. Recently, he also played Gary Mendez on ABC’s A Million Little Things.


Photo via ABC / A Million Little Things

Chrysta Bell, Alamo Heights High School


Songstress and longtime David Lynch collaborator Chrysta Bell has roots right here in the Alamo CIty — she was born in San Antonio and went to Alamo Heights High School. Though her work with the enigmatic filmmaker originally began in the music sphere, she made her screen debut as FBI Agent Tammy Preston in the hotly anticipated 2017 return of Lynch’s iconic TV series Twin Peaks.


Photo via Showtime / Twin Peaks

Pendleton Ward, LEE High School


You may not recognize his face, but you’d definitely recognize his drawings — Pendleton Ward is the brains behind hit Cartoon Network series Adventure Time, which ran on the channel fom 2010-2018. The animator and voice actor was born in San Antonio in 1982 and graduated from now-LEE High School before moving to California to attend CalArts. In 2020 his new animated series The Midnight Gospel hit Netflix, and the spinoff miniseries Adventure Time: Distant Lands debuted on HBO Max.


Photo via Twitter / buenothebear

Bruce McGill, MacArthur High School


Even if you’re not a Bruce McGill stan, you probably recognize him, because he’s made appearances on tons of TV shows since he started acting in the late ’70s. McGill was born in San Antonio in 1950 and went to MacArthur HS before going to the University of Texas at Austin for college, and has been in everything from Animal House to USA’s Rizzoli and Isles in his decades-spanning career.


Photo via USA / Suits

Sendhil Ramamurthy, Keystone School


Before he made a splash in shows like Covert Affairs and Heroes, Sendhil Ramamurthy gew up in the 2-1-0 and graduated from Keystone School. In addition to recent roles on TV series The Flash and New Amsterdam, Ramamurthy now plays “hot dad” Mohan Vishwakumar on Mindy Kaling’s Netflix series Never Have I Ever.


Photo via Netflix / Lara Solanki

Shea Serrano, Southwest High School

New York Times best-selling author, journalist and former teacher proudly reps San Antonio – more specifically the South Side. Widely known for his addicting Twitter personality, Serrano graduated from Southwest HS.


Photo via Instagram / laramiserranophoto

Ricardo Chavira, LEE High School


Though he’s starred in hit TV series from Desperate Housewives to Scandal, Ricardo Chavira arguably landed his greatest role yet in 2019: playing Tejana queen Selena’s father Abraham Quintanilla Jr. in Netflix’s new series about the pop star. Chavira was born in San Anto in 1971 and graduated from LEE High School — then named Robert E. Lee — and later attended the University of the Incarnate Word.


Photo via YouTube/ Netflix

Sam Sanders, Samuel Clemens High School


Ok, we know Samuel Clemens HIgh School is technically in Schertz, but we’re still counting it. San Antonio native Sam Sanders went to Clemens High before double majoring in music and political science at UIW. After getting his master’s in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School, he joined NPR, where he served as a correspondent and key member of the elections unit and was one of the original co-hosts of NPR’s Politics Podcast. Since 2017, he’s hosted It’s Been a Minute with Sam Sanders, a twice weekly show that alternates between “deep dive” interviews and news roundups.



Photo via Instagram / samsanders

Austin Mahone, Jefferson High School


Austin Mahone may have only gone to Jefferson High School for one year, but we think that’s enough to claim him. The pop star got his start covering songs on YouTube, and now has a slew of releases under his belt. He was born in SA in 1996 and after his one year stint at Jefferson he finished high school in homeschool. He signed with Elektra Records in 2019 to produce the follow-up to his 2017 album Dirty Work.


Photo via Instagram / austinmahone

Henry Thomas, Central High School


Most often recognized for his breakout role at Elliott in E.T. the Extra-Terresstrial, San Antonio native Henry Thomas has become a horror fixture of late with starring roles in Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House and its follow-up The Haunting of Bly Manor. The actor was born in SA in 1971 and went to Central HS.


Photo via Netflix / The Haunting of Bly Manor

Jesse Borrego, Harlandale High School


Nobody reps the 2-1-0 like Jesse Borrego. Born in San Antonio in 1962, the Harlandale HS graduate still lives here today. While he may be best known for his roles in Fame and Blood In Blood Out, Borrego’s had his share of roles on hit TV series — from Dexter to Fear the Walking Dead — and was recently seen on the third season of Starz series Vida.


Photo courtesy of CineFestival

Chris Perez, Jefferson High School


Known best as Selena’s husband, musician Chris Perez was born in San Antonio in 1969 and went to Jefferson HS. Though he’s still active as a musician, Perez has expanded into the food scene, with two pepper sauces he released in collaboration with Cajohn’s Fiery Foods.


Photo via Instagram / chrispereznow

Jonathan Joss, McCollum High School


You can’t geet much more San Antonio than Jonathan Joss, who was born born in the Alamo City in 1965 as Jonathan Gonzales. Of Spanish, Comanche and White Mountain Apache descent, Joss attended McCollum High School and attended Texas State before leaving the university and finishing his studies at Our Lady of the Lake. The actor played John Redcorn on King of the Hill and Chief Ken Hotate on Parks and Recreation, and recently lent his voice to the video games Days Gone and Wasteland 3.


Photo via Netflix / Parks and Recreation

Rick Riordan, Alamo Heights High School


You may know Rick Riordan for his Percy Jackson and the Olympians book series, but did you know the author’s a tried and true San Antonian? Born and raised in the Alamo City, Riordan went to Alamo Heights High School before heading to college at North Texas State University (now UNT). He transferred to UT Austin to study English and History, then came back to San Antonio and nabbed a teaching certification at UTSA.


Photo via Wikimedia Commons / Rhododendrites

Nicholas Gonzalez, Central Catholic High School


Nicholas Gonzalez didn’t originally plan to be an actor, but we’re glad he became one. He was born in San Antonio in 1976 and went to Central Catholic HS before going to Stanford to study English. While he was there, a professor who saw him in a one-man theater performance convinced him to pursue acting, and the rest is history. The TV star has appeared in Pretty Little Liars, How To Get Away With Murder and Being Mary Jane, and plays Dr. Neil Melendez on ABC’s The Good Doctor.


Photo via ABC / The Good Doctor

Peter Weller, Alamo Heights High School


RoboCop went to school in San Antonio?! Yes, it’s true. Actor Peter Weller, a Wisconsin native, landed in SA thanks to his dad’s military career and actually graduated from Alamo Heights HS.


Photo via Instagram / real_peter_weller

Patricia Vonne, St. Anthony High School


Sister to Robert Rodriguez, Patricia Vonne is a powerhouse in her own right. The singer and actress, who’s appeared in some of her brother’s films, was born in San Antonio in 1969 and went to St. Anthony High School. She lived in NYC for a while to pursue her “artistic career” but later returned to the Lone Star State and settled in Austin. She’s now joined forces with fellow Latina singer-songwriters Tish Hinojosa and Stephanie Urbina Jones to form the Texicana Mamas.


Photo via Instagram / patriciavonne

Christopher Cross, Alamo Heights High School


Born in San Antonio in 1951, singer songwriter Christopher Cross is best known for ’80s yacht rock hits like “Sailing,” “Ride Like the Wind” and “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do).” A graduate of Alamo Heights High School, Cross later made Austin his home. Unfortunately, in 2020 Cross revealed that he not only contracted COVID-19, but developed Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), which causes paralysis and can require a year or more for even a partial recovery. The singer has been open about the condition and chronicled his path to recovery on social media.


Photo via Instagram / itsmrcrosss

Jessica Collins: Tom C. Clark High School

Collins is known for her roles in the Oscar-winning film Zero Dark Thirty, the AMC television series Rubicon and NBC’s Revolution. She’s set to play Emma Beesley in the forthcoming TV series Clickbait.


Photo via Sony Pictures Home Entertainment / Zero Dark Thirty

Todd White, John Marshall High School


A San Antonio native that went to John Marshall High School, Todd White made his name in Hollywood with work on iconic cartoon series including Tiny Toons and Ren & Stimpy, going on to serve as the lead character designer for SpongeBob SquarePants. White later left animation, concentrating on his skyrocketing solo art career. However, in 2011 things took a turn for the wild, as his longtime gallerist Peggy Howell accused him of shaking her down with hired “goons” and stealing his own art from her. Vanity Fair laid out a confusing web of accusations in a 2012 article, which details White’s claims that Howell was selling forgeries of his giclée prints and that he’d solicited the help of his lawyer and two friends from his martial arts gym to confront her and retrieve his work. According to Vanity Fair, just prior to the article’s publication, Howell and White reached a confidential legal settlement.


Photo via Wikimedia Commons / Jonathan Ales

Shawn Michaels, Randolph High School


Though he was born in Arizona, WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels’ ties to SA make him the prodigal son of the Alamo City. No, not really, but we do rep him since he attended Randolph HS on base. He would later be trained by local, yet acclaimed boxing legend José Lothario.


Photo courtesy of WWE

John Quiñones, Brackenridge High School


TV personality Juan Manuel “John” Quiñones was born in the Alamo City in 1952, and attended Brackenridge HS before heading to St. Mary’s University for college, with the help of the Upward Bound program. Now, he’s best known for hosting ABC’s What Would You Do?


Photo via Instagram / johnquinones

Marcia Nasatir, Jefferson High School


Born in San Antonio in 1926, Marcia Nasatir is a pioneer for women in Hollywood – particularly women working as producers. In 1974, Nasatir became the first female vice president of a major Hollywood studio (United Artists). She legit grew up in SA too – she’s opened up about attending Jefferson HS and going to movies at the Majestic and Aztec as a kid.


Photo courtesy of Marcia Nasatir

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Jared Padalecki, Madison High School


Jared Padalecki’s breakout role may have been playing Dean Forester on Gilmore Girls, but he’ll likely always be remembered for his 15-season run as Sam Winchester on Supernatural. Now, Padalecki stars as the famed Texas Ranger formerly played by Chuck Norris in the TV series reboot Walker. The actor was born in the Alamo City in 1982 and graduated from Madison HS and now calls Austin home.


Photo via The CW / Walker

Original posted at www.sacurrent.com

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