Top 15 Most Famous Celebrities From Ohio: Famous People From OH (2023)
Social media, much like television before it, has changed a lot in life, and that includes who is regarded as that most ephemeral and transient of creatures – a “celebrity.”
BetOhio.com typically covers Ohio betting apps and the latest promos, but we wanted to take a hyper-localized approach to see what notable folks, who were raised in the state of Ohio, were being discussed the most over the past year, with the conclusion that those folks could be called the Buckeye State’s most well-known celebrities.
To make these determinations, we used a weighted system combining AhRefs.com Keywords Explorer as well as Google Trends in order to determine the most searched Ohio celebrities over the past 12 months (October 2022 to October 2023). Those two results were averaged to determine the Top 15.
An Ohio celebrity was defined as a person who resided in Ohio in their formative childhood and teenage period for over five years. Celebrity was broken down to include only living actors/actresses, singer/songwriters, athletes, TV personalities, comedians, dancers and social media influencers.
Ranking the 15 Most Famous Celebrities From Ohio
Honorable Mentions; Actress Lili Reinhart, Comedian Matt Rife, Musician Dave Grohl, Actor Rob Lowe, Gymnast Simone Biles, Musician John Legend
LeBron, Steph Curry Sit At The Top
With those ground rules in mind, some hugely famous Ohioans, who have passed away, did not make this list, such as first man on the moon Neil Armstrong, six-time Oscar nominated actor Paul Newman, and legendary comedian Bob Hope. The list instead begins with a couple of future Basketball Hall of Famers in LeBron James and Stephen Curry, both of whom likely would've been favorites to top this list at most Ohio sportsbooks.
James, the challenger for the NBA's "GOAT" label against the legend that is Michael Jordan, was Akron born and raised before he became the face of the Cavaliers at the ripe age of 18. While he has come and gone a couple times in his NBA career amid stints with the Heat and Lakers, James delivering the 2016 NBA Finals title to the Cavs, and state of Ohio, cemented him not only as state royalty, but also likely ensured he will top this list well into the future.
Curry has a more casual relationship to Ohio, though still clearly carries weight among state residents. Curry was also born in Akron and resided there as a very young man as his father, Dell, played for the Cavs. But Curry mostly grew up in Charlotte, N.C. as his father carved out a more substantial role with the Hornets from 1988-1998.
Katie Holmes, Halle Berry Tie At No. 3
Evidence of the power of the internet and of social media chatter is a personality who tied for No. 3 for best-known Ohioan – Katie Holmes of Toledo. On her own, Holmes is a well-regarded actress (TV’s “Dawson’s Creek”) and routinely winds up on most-beautiful-people lists. However, her volume of online clicks may be the result of her former marriage to actor Tom Cruise. That break-up, which occurred over 10 years ago, still generates lots of internet traffic. Holmes’ search volume over the last year was 1.05 million.
Tied for No. 3 with Holmes is veteran actress Halle Berry, of Cleveland. Berry has had an enduring acting career that began in 1989 and is still going strong, with a film project in post-production and another one still in filming. The No. 5 Ohio celebrity has become a ubiquitous presence on TV -- comedian and game show host Steve Harvey, of Cleveland. His search volume for the year was 982,000. It’s a challenge to read Harvey’s name or even visualize his face and not hear the theme song from “Family Feud” in your head.
At No. 6 is Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, a Westlake native who cut his teeth at the University of Cincinnati before he went on to catch touchdowns from Patrick Mahomes. Of all those on this list, Kelce's profile is the most on the rise, thanks to his newfound romance with one Taylor Swift.
The No. 7 most well-known Ohioan turned out to be actress Sarah Jessica Parker, of Nelsonville, who has ridden the “Sex in the City” franchise as Carrie Bradshaw through the decades. Her search volume was 917,000. At No. 8 was musician/rapper Machine Gun Kelly, of Cleveland, with a search volume of 882,00. Kelly’s career has been on track for a little more than a decade, showing he has some staying power.
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Paul Brothers Make Appearances
Two of the remaining Top 15 owe their celebrity largely to a mix of acting, fighting skills and social media influence – the brothers Jake Paul (No. 12, 711,000) and Logan Paul (No. 14, 495,000). The two are from Westlake and a fair amount of their clicks come from controversies and feuds.
Other Ohio celebs on the Top 15 list were: No. 9, musician and singer Marilyn Manson, of Canton, 790,000 search volume; No. 10 Steven Spielberg, of Cincinnati, whose credentials are his catalogue of award-winning films, 754,000 search volume, and No. 13, actor Woody Harrelson, of Lebanon, 613,000 search volume.
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Most Famous Celebrities From Ohio FAQ
LeBron James and Stephen Curry are the two most famous people from Ohio, according to research done by the BetOhio.com staff. Katie Holmes, Halle Berry and Steve Harvey round out the rest of the top 5, just ahead of Travis Kelce.
Yes, Steve Harvey is from Cleveland, Ohio. While Harvey was born in West Virginia, his family moved to Cleveland when he was young, and Harvey often refers to this as his hometown.
Steven Spielberg was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on December 18, 1946. He is widely regarded aa one of the most famous people from Ohio.
Logan Paul and Jake Paul were born in Cleveland, Ohio, and grew up in Westlake, Ohio. Both Paul brothers continue to stay active in Ohio, appearing at and even competing in various sporting events.
Travis Kelce was born in Westlake, and played at the University of Cincinnati before being drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs.