Famous Weld County People
Submitted by Nancy Lynch of the City of Greeley Museums.
BENJAMIN H. EATON (1833-1904), Justice of Peace, Weld Co Commissioner, Colorado Territorial Representative then Senator, Colorado State Governor.
NATHAN C. MEEKER (1817-1879), newspaperman and entrepreneurial founder of Union Colony of Colorado, which founded Greeley. Follower of utopian ideals and believer in a temperant agrarian lifestyle, Meeker motivated some to join the Union Colony and others to start their own colonies based on his principles. As an Indian Agent Meeker was less successful, killed by the Ute in 1879.
JOSEPH "TOOTS" MONDT (1894 - 1976), an Eaton farm boy, beat a carnival wrestler in record time and took his job. Mondt soon learned that showmanship sold tickets and became a promoter. He co-founded the World Wide Wrestling Federation, now World Wrestling Entertainment.
GEORGE FISK (1838 - 1926) was a mechanic before enlisting in the Civil War in 1863 as a musician. Following the war, he gained experience as a pattern maker and wood worker. The son of Union Colonists, Fisk moved to Greeley in 1876 and put these skills together to make violins of extraordinary quality.
PHILIP ANSCHUTZ, entrepreneur and investor, owns part of numerous basketball, soccer and hockey teams, co-founder of Major League Soccer and Forbes ranks him the 34th richest person in the U.S.
WARREN MONFORT, Colorado State Teachers College graduate (now UNC), became teacher then took over his father’s farm and developed cattle pen-feeding business, developed to large scale feedlots for Monfort of Colorado.
KENNETH MONFORT: expanded his father’s feedlot business to include meat packing, and by 1970 Monfort led both national and world meat markets. The company set up its own trucking fleet and expanded, building feedlots near Gilcrest, Kuner, and Yuma, the largest in the world.
DICK MONFORT: UNC graduate, became Monfort of Colorado’s group vice president of cattle products 1983-1984 and executive vice president 1984-1987, real estate investor and on the board of Trustees for UNC, Board of Directors at University of Colorado Hospital, Denver Zoo, and the Colorado Economic Development Board.
CHARLES MONFORT, president of Monfort Intl. Sales then president of ConAgra Foods Intl.(1996-1998), board member of the Kempe Foundation, the Special Olympics, and the Monfort Family Foundation, a Rockies Baseball Club founder, Owner/General Partner, one of the Rockies' managing general partners since 1992.
LYULPH “LORD” OGILVY (1861 - 1947) was a roguish son of a Scottish earl. A family allowance gave him the luxury to develop Greeley area land, finance irrigation projects, improve livestock breeds, and have adventures. Became Agricultural editor for The Denver Post.
HENSEL PHELPS (1890 - 1971): Built his first home in Greeley in 1937, pioneered innovative construction techniques with cost-effective designs. Hensel Phelps Construction Co. has become one of the largest employee-owned construction firms in the world.
PAUL LIGHTSEY, scientist/ engineer; for Ball Aerospace on NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and the James Webb Space Telescope
SHAWN CHACON, baseball player with Colorado Rockies, New York Yankees, Pittsburg Pirates, Houston Astros, Newark Bears, Oakland Athletics
SHAWSHEEN, Ute tribal representative, sister of Chief Ouray, helped rescue Meeker women in 1879.
KATHERINE SLAUGHTERBACK, “Rattlesnake Kate (1893 - 1969), killed 140 rattlesnakes in 2 hours in 1925, made dress from their skins (at Greeley History Museum.)
TERRY UNREIN, football player
UNC Notable Alumni
STEVE ANTONOPULOS, head athletic trainer of the Denver Broncos
GLEN ALPS, printmaker, coiner of the term collagraph
GREGG BRANDON, college football coach of the Wyoming Cowboys
FRED BROWN, The Denver Post political writer and columnist
JENNIFER AND NATALIE JO CAMPBELL, December Playmates 2008
STEVEN DIETZ, playwright
REED DOUGHTY, football player of the Washington Redskins
BEN DREITH, American Football League and National Football League referee
BILL FRISELL, jazz guitarist
GREG GERMANN, actor from Ally McBeal
MARIAN HESSE, Grammy-winning horn player
VINCENT JACKSON, football player of the San Diego Chargers
VIRGIL JESTER, baseball player
DIRK JOHNSON, football player
DAVE KELLER, baseball player and coach
JAMES P. KELLEY, money manager
BILL KENNEY, football player and politician
MARYANNE KUSAKA, politician
CARLOTTA WALLS LANIER, member of the Little Rock Nine
JAMES A. MICHENER (1907-1997) attended and taught at CSTC (now UNC), Pulitzer Prize winning author
CAROL MUTTER, Marine Corps Lieutenant General
BRAD NUCCIO, Senior Vice President of Saint Louis Science Center and Executive Director of National Center for Science
MARK NUCCIO, currently the Assistant Principal and Eb clarinetist of the New York Philharmonic
BRAD PYATT, former National Football League player and current Arena Football League wide receiver
SAYYID QUTB, author and a leading Islamist of the 20th century
JEANNIE RITTER, Colorado First Lady
NEAL RUBIN, The Detroit News columnist and author of comic strip Gil Thorp.
CHESLEY B. "SULLY" SULLENBERGER, Captain of U.S. Airways Flight 1549, that successfully landed in the Hudson River in 2009, he has a M.A. in Public Relations from UNC.
AARON SMITH, football player of the Pittsburgh Steelers
TOM TANCREDO, R-CO, member of United States House of Representatives and presidential candidate.
TOM WALSH, R-WY, mayor of Casper and member of the Wyoming House of Representatives (2003–2008); received Ed.D. through UNC
WELLINGTON WEBB, former mayor of Denver
ED WERDER, reporter for ESPN
CONNIE WILLIS, science fiction author with 11 Hugo Awards, 11 Locus Poll Awards and 7 Nebula Awards
KENNETH W. WINTERS, member of the Kentucky State Senate
JACK CASSINETTO, plein air painter
DR. JOHN EVANS (1814-1897), 2nd Governor of Colorado Territory, helped create Union Pacific Railroad Co., leader in getting railroad built between Denver and Cheyenne, namesake for town of Evans
HORACE GREELEY, newspaper man, founder of Liberal Republican Party, reformer and politician, ran for President in 1872 against U. S. Grant, anti-slavery and pro-vegetarian.
P.T. BARNUM (1810 - 1891), A Union Colonist, owned “Barnum Block” and other properties, in downtown Greeley. He brought “The Greatest Show on Earth” circus and General Tom Thumb to Greeley, and lectured here on the evils of alcohol.