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There are many famous people with ADHD. They include athletes, actors, scientists, musicians, business leaders, authors, and artists. There are 100+ celebrities with learning disabilities, specifically ADHD, I found as part of our research on Ongig’s series on neurodiversity. I felt inspired to list all these amazing people in one place!

Disclaimers: This list includes successful people with ADHD who have been diagnosed and those who have been reported or rumored to have ADHD. I do my best to list resources for any questionable ones and welcome feedback, additions, and edits! I am not an expert on ADHD.

Celebrities with ADHD

Justin Timberlake ADHD

Famous musician Justin Timberlake says he battles with both OCD and ADHD. (image source: Wikipedia)

Emma Watson has ADHD

Pop Sugar’s article says the Harry Potter star, Emma Watson, is not open about her ADHD but has been treated with medication since she was diagnosed as a child. (image source: Georges Biard, Wikipedia)

If you had to list the very top celebrities with ADHD, you could do worse than this list of 20:

  1. Simone Biles (diagnosed)
  2. Terry Bradshaw (diagnosed)
  3. Jim Carey (rumored)
  4. James Carville (diagnosed)
  5. Bill Gates (rumored)
  6. Ryan Gosling (rumored)
  7. Paris Hilton (diagnosed)
  8. Michael Jordan (rumored)
  9. Adam Levine (diagnosed)
  10. Howie Mandel (diagnosed)
  11. Ty Pennington (diagnosed)
  12. Michael Phelps (diagnosed)
  13. Will Smith (rumored)
  14. Britney Spears (diagnosed)
  15. Channing Tatum (diagnosed)
  16. Justin Timberlake (diagnosed)
  17. Liv Tyler (diagnosed)
  18. Carrie Underwood (diagnosed)
  19. Emma Watson (diagnosed)
  20. Will.i.am (diagnosed)

But let’s break it down in more detail. There are so many reported famous people with ADHD that I categorize them by their professional field (Actors, Athletes, Musicians, Entrepreneurs, Scientists, etc.).

I do my best to provide sourcing at the bottom of this article. I hope you’re as inspired by these great humans as I am!

 

Actors with ADHD

Liv Tyler adhd

Actress and daughter of rock superstar Steven Tyler, meditates to control her ADHD according to the Irish Examiner. (image source: Greg2600, Wikipedia)

  • Chloe Bennett – Actress
  • Albie Casiño- Actor
  • Jim Carrey – Actor (rumored ADHD)
  • Eliza Coupe – Actress
  • Cara Delevigne – Actress & Model
  • Zooey Deschanel – Actress, Model & Musician
  • Eliza Dushku – Actress
  • Helen Flanagan – Actress
  • Joseph Gilgun – Actor
  • Ryan Gosling – Actor
  • Paris Hilton – Actress
  • Luke Jacobz – Actor
  • Diane Kruger – Actress
  • Jessica McCabe – Actress
  • Audra McDonald – Actress
  • Rita Simons – Actress
  • Will Smith – Actor (rumored ADHD)
  • Channing Tatum – Actor & Producer
  • Bex Taylor-Klaus – Actress
  • Liv Tyler – Actor & Producer
  • Mara Wilson – Actress

 

Comedians with ADHD (and TV/Media Personalities)

Howie Mandel ADHD

Howie Mandel has been vocal about his experiences with ADHD and OCD. (image source: Wikipedia)

  • Richard Bacon – Broadcaster
  • Glenn Beck – TV Producer & Radio Host
  • Bethany Black – Comedian
  • Raphael Bob-Waksburg – Comedian, Actor & Producer
  • Russell Brand – Comedian & Actor
  • Hannah Gadsby – Comedian & Actress
  • Rick Green – Comedian
  • Filip Hammer – TV Host
  • Ryan Higa – Comedian
  • Lee Mack – Comedian & Actor
  • Howie Mandel – Comedian
  • Patrick McKenna – Comedian
  • Jamie Oliver – Celebrity Chef
  • Jack Osbourne – Media Personality
  • Ty Pennington – TV Host
  • Lele Pons – Internet Celebrity
  • Nabil Abdul Rashid – Comedian
  • Joan Rivers – TV Personality (rumored ADHD)
  • Brookley Wofford – Beauty Pageant Queen
  • Jason Zimmerman – Professional Gamer

 

Famous Athletes with ADHD

Among other celebrities with ADHD are athletes. If you don’t recognize some of these people, don’t fret (I didn’t either)…but when I researched them they are indeed celebrities within their field!

Simone Biles ADHD

Olympic gymnast Simone Biles openly talked about her ADHD diagnosis after her medial records were leaked prior to the 2004 Rio Olympics says the Huffington Post. (image source: Agência Brasil Fotografias, Wikipedia)

 

Michael Phelps ADHD

Phelps was diagnosed with ADHD at just 9 years old according to WebMD but did not let it stop his dreams of competing in the Olympics. (image source: Agência Brasil Fotografias, Wikipedia)

  • Terry Bradshaw – Superbowl Champion & Sports Commentator
  • Simone Biles – Olympic Gymnast
  • Cammi Granato – Olympic Hickey Player
  • Tim Howard – Soccer Star
  • Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner – Track Star
  • Michael Jordan – Basketball Star (rumored ADHD)
  • Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer
  • Pete Rose – Baseball Star
  • Babe Ruth – Baseball Legend (rumored ADHD)
  • Karina Smirnoff – Professional Dancer
  • Shane Victorino – Major League Baseball Player

 

Famous Musicians with ADHD

There are quite a few musicians with ADHD. Does Adam Levine have ADHD? According to Healthline, Adam Levin struggled with sitting still, completing work, and focusing (some of the top signs of ADHD).

Adam Levine ADHD

Does Adam Levine have ADHD? Adam Levine struggled in school due to his ADHD. (image source: gashleygoh Flickr)

 

 

Joyner Lucas ADHD

Joyner Lucas, a famous rapper, even named an album after his struggles with ADHD as a kid. (image source: Twenty Nine Music Group, Wikipedia)

 

“Joyner Lucas ADHD” is searched 12,000 times per month on Google according to ahrefs.com. This could be because his fans want to know more about his struggles with ADHA growing up, or to learn about the album he named after them, called “ADHD”.

Note: Rapper Kendrick Lamar named one of his most recent albums “A.D.H.D.”, but reports show he does not have ADHD and the album name is not related to a learning disability.

Ok, here’s the list of famous musicians who have ADHD:

  • Mel B – Musician
  • Sven Anders Bagge – Composer
  • Aaron Bruno – Singer
  • Loyle Carner – Hip Hop Musician
  • Zooey Deschanel – Musician, Actress & Model
  • Dorian Electra – Musician
  • Example – Musician & Rapper
  • Dex Fafara – Musician
  • Kerry Katona – Singer & Songwriter
  • Kleerup – Musician
  • Solange Knowles – Singer
  • Left at London – Singer & Comedian
  • John Lennon – Musician  (rumored ADHD)
  • Adam Levine – Musician & Entrepreneur
  • Joyner Lucas – Rapper & Producer
  • Marie-Mai – Musician
  • Mozart – Composer(rumored ADHD)
  • Park Bom – Singer
  • Tom Paxton – Singer & Songwriter
  • Greg Puciato – Musician
  • Todd Rundgren – Instrumentalist
  • Elliot Smith – Singer & Songwriter
  • Brittney Spears – Musician
  • Magnus Uggla – Composer
  • Carrie Underwood – Musician & Actress
  • Brendon Urie – Musician
  • Chris Webby – Rapper
  • Ben Weinman – Musician
  • Billy West – Musician & Voice Actor
  • Will.i.am – Rapper & Producer

 

Famous Writers with ADHD

Lisa Ling ADHD

In an article by Understood.com, Journalist Lisa Ling said “I had trouble concentrating in school, and it really affected my grades and self-confidence. I had to work and try very hard to get ahead.” (image source: Jingman, Wikipedia)

 

Dav Pilkey credits his success to ADHD

Cartoonist & Author Dav Pilkey told the Washington Post he credits his ADHD for his massive success. (image source: Kojisasuke, Wikipedia)

  • Katherine Ellison – Author
  • Lisa Ling – Journalist, Author & TV Personality
  • Lousie Mensch – Blogger & Novelist
  • David Allen Patterson – Author & Researcher
  • Dav Pilkey – Author & Illustrator

 

Entrepreneurs with ADHD (and other Leaders)

As children, and even during their adult lives, these entrepreneurs and other leaders faced challenges because of their ADHD. But that did not stop them from pursuing their dreams.

Scott Kelly has ADHD

Astronaut Scott Kelly was the first America to spend a year in space, as a child he never thought his dreams would come true due to ADHD. (image source: NASA Johnson Flickr)

 

Does Donald Trump have ADHD? According to Trump biographer Michael D’Antonio in an article by Politico,

“I think he’s definitely got attention deficit disorder…”

What about Barron Trump? 80 people per month google the phrase “Barron Trump ADHD” though there’s no confirmation of Barron having ADHD.

Donald Trump adhd

Do Donald Trump and his son have ADHD? (image source: Wikipedia)

  • Annie Antón – Found of ThePrivacyPlace.org
  • Blondinbella – Swedish Entrepreneur & Author
  • Sir Richard Branson – Entrepreneur(rumored ADHD)
  • Walt Disney – Disney Creator(rumored ADHD)
  • Bill Gates – Entrepreneur
  • Benn Glenn – Professional Speaker
  • Margaux Joffe – Producer & ADHD Community Leader
  • Scott Kelly – Astronaut
  • John F. Kennedy – U.S. President (rumored ADHD)
  • Steve Madden – Shoe Designer

Shoe mogul, Steve Madden was featured ina. Netflix film which documents his life and struggles with ADHD, among other things. Mentality Magazine reported that:

“After struggling to make it through college because of the distracting party scene, his growing addiction to alcohol, and his ADHD, he decided to quit school and get a job in a shoe store. This is where he discovered his passion for designing shoes…”

  • David Neeleman – Aviation Entrepreneur
  • Paul Orfalea – Founder of Kinko’s
  • Donald Trump – U.S. President (rumored ADHD)
  • Barron Trump – Public Figure & Donald Trump’s Son (Rumored ADHD)

 

Famous Scientists with ADHD (and Inventors)

  • Albert Einstein – Scientist(rumored ADHD)
  • Alexander Graham Bell – Inventor (rumored ADHD)
  • Thomas Edison – Inventor(rumored ADHD)

 

Famous Artists with ADHD

  • Leonardo da Vinci – Artist & Sculptor (rumored ADHD)
  • Vincent van Gogh – Artist (rumored ADHD)
  • Pablo Picasso – Artist (rumored ADHD)

 

Famous Doctors with ADHD

  • Edward “Ned” Hallowell – Psychiatrist
  • Gabor Maté – Childhood Development Physician

Good Jobs for People with ADHD

Many of these famous people with ADHD used their talent to help stay focused and to stay in control of their ADHD. Additude Magazine’s article on good jobs for people with ADHD says that:

“creative, engaging, interactive professions on this list make the most of ADD attributes like empathy, energy, enthusiasm, and hyperfocus under pressure”

A few of the top professions listed are artist, entrepreneur, chef, journalist and stage manager.

  • Artist
  • Entrepreneur
  • Chef
  • Journalist
  • Stage Manager

From what we can tell, these famous people with ADHD were right on track picking some of the best jobs for people with ADHD.

Famous People with Dysgraphia

Dysgraphia is often seen in people with ADHD. What is dysgraphia? According to AdditudeMag:

“Dysgraphia is a learning disability that affects writing ability and fine motor skills. It interferes with spelling, word spacing, and the general ability to put thoughts on paper, and makes the process of writing laboriously slow.”

Dysgraphia affects children and adults. Here is a list of some famous people with Dysgraphia (diagnosed or rumored):

  • Agatha Christie (author)
  • Thomas Edison (scientist)
  • Albert Einstein (scientist)
  • George Patton (military general)
  • Henry Winkler (director)

Famous People with Tourette Syndrome

ADHD often occurs in people with Tourette Syndrome. CHADD.org says:

“Less than 10 percent of those with ADHD have Tourette’s, but 60 to 80 percent of children with Tourette Syndrome have ADHD”

What is Tourette Syndrome? Tourette Syndrome is a nervous system disorder causing repetitive movements or unwanted sounds. We found these famous people with Tourette Syndrome (diagnosed or rumored), some of which also have ADHD:

  • Dan Aykroyd (actor)
  • David Beckham (soccer star)
  • Billie Eilish (singer)
  • Jim Eisenreich (baseball star)
  • Jamie Grace Harper (musician)
  • Tim Howard (soccer star)
  • Howard Hughes (entrepreneur)
  • Dr. Samuel Johnson (writer)
  • Dash Mihok (actor)
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (composer)
  • Marc Summers (TV personality)
  • Michael Wolff (author)

Other Successful People with ADHD?

My list is by no means complete. Please let me know if you find other successful people with ADHD and I will be glad to add them to this growing list! Just ping me at Heather@Ongig.com.

If you enjoyed this list, you might also want to check out Famous People with Dyslexia [A List of 175+ Actors, Athletes, Musicians & Scientists] and Famous People with Autism [180+ Athletes, Actors, Musicians & More!]

And a final thanks goes to…

 

Sources for my Research on Famous People with ADHD

These pros helped me source the article — thank you!

  1. Wikipedia’s Listing of People with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  2. WebMD’s slideshow on Celebrities With ADD/ADHD
  3. Healthline’s article on 9 Celebrities with ADHD
  4. AdditudeMag’s article on Famous People with ADHD
  5. Greatist’s article on 33 Famous Faces of ADHD
  6. Health 24’s article on You’d never guess these famous people have ADHD
  7. AdditudeMag’s article on 16 Good Jobs for People with ADHD
  8. Michael Cavna’s article on Dav Pilkey credits his ADHD for his massive success. Now he wants kids to find their own ‘superpower’
  9. LD Resources Foundation’s article on Howie Mandel Gets Real About his ADHD & OCD
  10. Geri Coleman Tucker’s article on Astronaut Scott Kelly Opens Up About His Attention Issues
  11. Inspire Malibu’s article on 9 Famous People With ADHD
  12. Julian Sonny’s article on The 10 Most Successful People With ADHD
  13. Lauren Guilbeault’s article on 30 Famous People With ADHD
  14. Christina Margolis’s article on Kids’ Creations: The Art of Having ADHD
  15. Sabrina Park’s article on 11 Bad*ss Women Who Are Thriving With ADHD
  16. Irish Examiner’s article on Tyler uses meditation to deal with ADD
  17. Michael Saponara’s article on Joyner Lucas Announces ‘ADHD’ Project Inspired by Childhood Diagnosis
  18. Maxwell Strachan’s article on Simone Biles Proudly Opens Up About Having ADHD
  19. Understood.com’s article on Celebrity Spotlight: Why Journalist Lisa Ling Was “Relieved” by Her ADHD Diagnosis
  20. Michael Kruse’s article on Donald Trump’s Shortest Attribute Isn’t His Fingers
  21. Grace Jordan’s article on Jessica Alba: Actress, Activist, Mother, Business Mogul, Birthday Girl
  22. Devon Frye’s article on What Is Dysgraphia?
  23. Healthsearchfunding.org’s article on Famous People with Dysgraphia
  24. CHADD.org’s article on Tics and Tourette Syndrome
  25. Disabled World’s article on Famous People with Tourettes Syndrome
  26. Alexa DeLuca’s article on Steve Madden

 

Why I wrote this?

Ongig is on a mission to eliminate boring and biased job descriptions. As part of this, we try to share best practices on all aspects of diversity. For example, Ongig’s Text Analyzer helps you avoid words that are exclusionary to famous (or non-famous) people with ADHD or other forms of Neurodiversity. Please visit Ongig if you’d like to learn more.

by in Diversity and Inclusion