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‘Go Dawgs’—Every Time You Shop

Introducing the University of Washington Gold Debit MasterCard® with free checking from BECU. When you use it, it’s like joining the world’s biggest Husky pep rally. Just check out what these famous UW alums have to say.

Meet the UW Alumni

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Nate Robinson

Robinson, though just 5’9”, is one of the most successful basketball players in recent UW history. His Husky teams played in the NCAA basketball tournament twice, reaching the Sweet Sixteen in 2005. He went on to play for the New York Knicks for five years, and in 2010 joined the Boston Celtics. Robinson is a three-time NBA Slam Dunk Champ.

  • Attended: ‘02-‘06
  • Major: Drama
  • Lived: Hagget Hall
  • Favorite class: Swahili
  • Hot spot on The Ave: China First
  • Memory: His famous interception in the final minutes of the 2002 Apple Cup, and a three-pointer against Oregon State that sent the game into overtime and turned around the team’s whole season.
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Kenny G

Kenneth Bruce Gorelick first played the saxophone when he was 10, and started playing professionally with Barry White while still at Franklin High School. After graduating, he played in bands and went solo in 1982, becoming one of the top-selling instrumental artists of all time.

  • Attended: ‘74-‘78
  • Major: Business; minor in accounting
  • Lived: McCarty Hall and Hansee Hall
  • Favorite class: Jazz Band under Roy Cummings
  • Recent reinvention: As star of the Super Bowl commercial that’s become a viral sensation. Kenny, with tongue in cheek, plays a “prison riot suppressor” at Luxury Prison. “If one of the prisoners is upset because he didn’t get enough caviar,” he explains, “they can get pretty unruly.” Enter the gentle sax stylings of Mr. G. Now that’s smooth.
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Danielle Lawrie

Danielle Lawrie was twice named college softball player of the year, and played for Team Canada in the 2008 Olympics. After graduating from UW in 2010, Lawrie turned pro and now plays for the USSSA Pride in Orlando, Fla.

  • Attended: ‘05-‘10
  • Major: Sociology
  • Lived: In the “softball house” for two years.
  • Favorite class: Public Speaking
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Pita Pit
  • Memory: Winning our National Championship in 2009! “As a team, to be the first in Washington history to do that, you feel such a sense of accomplishment. These girls are my best friends,” Lawrie told The Seattle Times in December 2010. "I think I'm going to love just watching the Huskies play and following how they do from afar.”
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Bill Gates Sr.

Bill Gates Sr., who grew up in Bremerton, says he never considered any university besides the University of Washington. He went on to a stellar law career and raised three children, including Microsoft founder Bill Gates. Now 85, he works for several philanthropies, including the World Justice Project.

  • Attended: ‘43-‘44, '46'-'50'
  • Major: Law
  • Lived: Chelan Hall
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Norm's
  • Memory: Meeting his first wife, Mary Maxwell (who died in 1994). And William Wilson’s psychology survey course: “It was the first time I was really seriously confronted with not taking everything you read or hear for granted,” he told Columns in 2004. “It was my first exposure to serious skepticism.”
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Rick Steves

Rick Steves is a renowned travel writer whose expertise now includes a world tour company and PBS and radio series as well as his highly regarded guidebooks.

  • Attended: ‘74-‘78
  • Major: European History and Business Administration
  • Lived: Hagget Hall
  • Favorite class: Any history class taught by Jon Bridgman
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Travel Team
  • Memory: Marching and playing sousaphone with the Husky Band
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Nancy Guppy

Nancy Guppy was a cast member in the famed Seattle sketch troupe Almost Live, which had its own TV show from 1984-1999. Since then, Guppy has been active in the Seattle arts scene and currently hosts “Arts Zone” on the Seattle Channel and KCTS.

  • Attended: ‘78-‘82
  • Major: Speech Communications
  • Lived: Gamma PhiBeta
  • Favorite class: Interpretative Literature and Geology “because I had a crush on the TA.”
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Grand Illusion Café
  • Memory: Standing on a roof staging “Memories.”
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Damon Huard

Huard was a UW quarterback, and his senior year passed for 2,415 yards and 11 touchdowns. He later played for Cincinnati, Miami, New England, Kansas City and San Francisco. He’s a two-time Super Bowl champion.

  • Attended: ‘91-‘95
  • Major: Business
  • Favorite class: Geology. “I loved the field trips!”
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Pagliacci Pizza
  • Memory: Playing in the “Whammy in Miami,” in 1994, when the Huskies came from behind in the third quarter to beat the Hurricanes 38-20 at the Orange Bowl. The win ended Miami's 58-game home winning streak.
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Brock Huard

Brock Huard followed his brother, Damon, to the UW football team, where he went on to set several UW career records, including most passing yards (5,742). He went on to play for Seattle and Indianapolis in the NFL. He’s now a popular radio talk-show host.

  • Attended: ‘95-‘99
  • Major: Psychology
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Thai Tom
  • Memory: “I told Sports Information Director Jim Daves that my favorite athlete to watch was UW basketball player Molly Hills. In the next media guide, Daves had placed my photo next to hers. Molly and I have been married for 13 years now and have three children.”
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Elise Woodward

Woodward was a star basketball player at the University of Washington and now is one of the Seattle area’s most refreshing sports commentators, with a popular evening show on the sports-only radio station KJR.

  • Attended: ‘93-‘97
  • Major: Communications
  • Lived: McMahon Hall
  • Favorite class: Psychology and Sociology of Women
  • Hot spot on the Ave: La Playa
  • Memory: Making it to the Sweet 16 at Tennessee!
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Detlef Schrempf

Born in Germany, Schrempf was a UW basketball star who was named to the All-Pac-10 Team. He went on to play for Dallas, Indiana, Seattle and Portland before retiring from the NBA in 2001.

  • Attended: ‘81-‘85
  • Major: International Business
  • Favorite class: Oceanography
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Arnold’s Burger Arcade
  • Little-known factoid: Has a Band of Horses song named for him
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Richard Karn

Richard Karn Wilson (who later dropped his last name professionally) began acting in commercials right after graduating from UW. He shot to stardom as costar of the sitcom “Home Improvement” in the ‘90s. Recently he’s appeared on TV regularly as a game show host and commercials.

  • Attended: ‘74-‘79
  • Major: Theater
  • Lived: Beta Theta Pi
  • Favorite class: Movement with Craig Turner
  • How UW shaped his career: Karn told Columns in 1995 that he had nearly been expelled from the UW Professional Actor Training Program. Bob Hobbs, director of the program, told Karn his voice needed work. "It made me mad," Karn told Columns, "so I started to work harder."
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Sonny Sixkiller

Sixkiller, a member of the Cherokee Nation, was a starting quarterback for the Huskies, and in 1970 led the NCAA in passing. He played in the Canadian and World Football Leagues, and now is affiliated with the Cedars at Dungeness Golf Resort in Sequim, Wash.

  • Attended: ‘69-‘73
  • Major: Psychology
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Hasty Tasty
  • Lesson from UW coach Jim Owens that still rings true: “Toughness,” Sixkiller told The Seattle Times. “When you played for Jim Owens' teams, other teams knew that they were definitely in a football game.”
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Captain Husky, aka Barry Erickson

Barry Erickson is a mild-mannered Seattle resident who can be found on UW game days in the west end zone in full Captain Husky regalia, helping lead the charge, and the cheers, for the team.

  • Attended: ‘82-‘86
  • Major: Business Administration
  • Lived: Phi Gamma Delta (Fiji) fraternity
  • Favorite classes: History of American Music, International Marketing and Psych 210
  • Hot spot on the Ave: Lock Stock and Bagel and the College Inn
  • Memory: “Drilling top-10-ranked UCLA and Reggie Miller on national TV in 1986 at Hec Ed. And drilling the Cougs in the 1986 Apple Cup in the snow and ice.”

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New to BECU?

To get your University of Washington Gold Debit Card, join BECU today and open a free checking account.

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Already a BECU Member?

Send us a secure message using the Message Center in Online Banking or print a request form.

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Learn more about membership