Famous Alumni From The Two-Thousands and Twenty-Tens
Famous Great Neck Alumni Pages include those graduates who have achieved success and prominence in their chosen field of endeavor. They are role models to past, present and future students because of their intellect, talent, creativity, skill, diligence, and commitment to excellence. They exemplify the capacity in all of us to aspire to greatness, follow our dreams and make a contribution to society. Their distinguished careers and lives are both a source of school district and community pride, and are also an inspiration to current students as well as to our individual and collective potential.
Great Neck Public Schools
2000s Alumni Spotlight
Sarah Hughes, Figure Skater
Class of 2003, Great Neck North High School
Sparkling Hughes Skates To Shock Gold
Sarah Hughes began skating at the age of 3 on the rink built by her father in their backyard. The rest, as they say, is history. Moving up the figure skating ranks, Sarah became the 1998 Junior National Figure Skating Champion, and placed fourth, third and second in the U.S. national competition in subsequent years. She was the 3rd Place Winner at the 2001 World Figure Skating Championships, and then, at the age of 16, she became a Gold Medalist at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Sarah is a recipient of the Presidential Award for Academic Excellence and the James E. Sullivan Award which recognized her as the nation's top amateur athlete. Sarah, a 2003 graduate of Great Neck North High School, graduated from Yale University with a Bachelor's Degree in American Studies in 2009. She is active with several social causes and sports organizations, including the Women's Sport Foundation. In recent years, she lent her support for the Hope organization, which holds skating events to raise funds for breast cancer research and awareness. Huges continues to skate today.
David Aaron Carpenter, Violist
Class of 2004, Great Neck North High School
A Violist and His Friends, Assertive and Collaborative
David Aaron Carpenter, a 2004 Great Neck North High School graduate, is a Princeton University alumnus and world-famous violist who performs with leading musicians and orchestras in the United States and Europe. David began studying the violin at the age of six, and moved on to the viola at the age of 12. By age 16, he pursued both instruments in the pre-college divisions of Julliard and the Manhattan School of Music, Italy's Accademia Chigiana, Switzerland's International Music Academy, and the Verbier Festival Academy. David was the first Prize Winner of the 2005 Philadelphia Orchestra Young Artists Competition and the 2006 Walter E. Naumburg Viola Competition. In 2007, David was the first American and the youngest performer selected as the new Music Protege in the Rolex Menor and Protege Arts Initiative. In 2010, David received the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant.
Nikki Blonsky, Actress
Class of 2006, Great Neck Village School
Whatever Happened To Hairspray's Nikki Blonsky?
Nikki Blonsky, a 2006 Village School graduate, realized her childhood dream and was catapulted into fame when she won a world-wide talent search and was chosen to co-star in the musical movie version of the 2002 Broadway hit, Hairspray. The movie was released in the summer of 2007 and Nikki made her debut performance playing Tracy Turnblad, a zaftig Baltimore teen with big teased hair. She followed up that performance by playing Maggie Baker in the 2008 television movie Queen Sized. She is also known for her main role in the ABC Family series Huge and has made several television guest appearances. Over the past few years, she continued to live in New York and has acted sporadically, nabbing small roles such as a recurring part on the cult musical series Smash. She recently worked on a drama film titled Dog Years, along with stars such as Modern Family actress Ariel Winter and Burt Reynolds. Prior to achieving fame, Nikki performed in the Great Neck production of Hair and Alice in Wonderland. She also performed the National Anthem at local games and participated in the Concert for Katrina Relief at the Great Neck Library.
Emily Hughes, Figure Skater
Class of 2007, Great Neck North High School
How one Olympian's failure helped her land a job at Google
Emily Hughes followed in her sister Sarah's footsteps while still blazing her own trail in the competitive world of figure skating. Emily was a published author at an early age, co-writing a book entitled "I am a Skater" in 2002. Emily won the bronze medal at the 2005 World Junior Championships, the first major international event she entered. That same year, Emily placed sixth at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships and was named an alternate to the 2006 Winter Olympics. When Michelle Kwan withdrew, Emily flew to Torino, Italy and placed seventh at the Olympic Games. Emily, a 2007 graduate of Great Neck North High School, attended Harvard University. After Harvard, Hughes worked at Deloitte Consulting and the International Olympic Committee. The former Olympian joined Google as a business analyst in 2015 where she worked on Google Fiber. She now works at Johnson & Johnson and also serves on the United States Olympic Committee’s Athletes Advisory Council. She got married in 2017.
Great Neck Public Schools
2010s Alumni Spotlight