There are people who are famous and then, there are people who have inspired and shaped our lives. Some of them may have names that are not that familiar and most of them are not the types that would elicit shrieks from an adoring crowd of teenage audience. All of them, however, have achieved something that is the subject of admiration and respect. Here now is a list of the top 10 most influential people of this decade.
10. Tina Fey
Pretty, funny and smart are just some of the adjectives that can be best used for Tina Fey. She is an accomplished writer, producer and comedian best known for the hit comedy series called 30 Rock. She started out as a writer and performer on Saturday Night Live before she adapted the screenplay for the Lindsay Lohan-headliner Mean Girls. She has won seven Emmy Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, five Screen Actors Guild Awards, four Writers Guild Awards and has even been nominated for a Grammy Award. She also authored the bestselling book Bossypants. She was the AP Entertainer of the Year in 2008 for her spot-on portrayal of Sarah Palin. Even her hosting skills have been critically acclaimed after she and Amy Poehler received praise for their handling of the 2013 Golden Globe Awards.
9. Mark Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg is the founder and creator of the social media site called Facebook. The site started out in the dorm rooms of Harvard before it was offered in other schools around the country. By the age of 23, Zuckerberg was already a billionaire.
8. Michelle Obama
Michelle Obama is the First Lady and wife of the current President of the United States. She attended Princeton University before taking up law in Harvard. She then worked in a Chicago law firm called Sidley Austin, where she met her future husband, Barack Obama. She is an advocate of poverty awareness, nutrition and healthy eating. She has also become a fashion icon and role model.
7. Jimmy Wales
Jimmy Wales is an Internet entrepreneur from Alabama. Along with Larry Sanger, he helped establish Wikipedia, a free, non-profit and open content encyclopedia. He now serves as its primary promoter and spokesman and sits on the board as the community founder. He also helped create Wikia, a for-profit wiki-hosting service. He now resides in London in the United Kingdom.
6. Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton is a politician and diplomat. She was the First Lady from 1993 to 2001. She then became a Senator representing the state of New York from 2001 to 2009. She made a run at the presidency, before losing to Obama in the Democratic presidential nomination race. Obama then appointed her as Secretary of State after winning the 2008 elections. She became the most traveled State Secretary during her time in office and was at the forefront of the American response to the Arab Spring. In 2013, she stepped down from office in favor of John Kerry.
5. J. K. Rowling
J. K. Rowling is a British novelist best known as the author of the fantasy series called Harry Potter. The series is known around the world and is considered to be the best selling book series of all time. It was then adapted to the big screen where it became the highest grossing film series of all time. Through it all, Rowling maintained control and had final overall approval of the scripts that were used. The idea for the book came to her while waiting for a train to London. It took her seven years to finish the first part, during which, she went through her mother’s death, divorce and hard times. She recently launched a new series called The Cuckoo’s Calling under the name Robert Galbraith.
4. Larry Page
Larry Page is an Internet entrepreneur from Michigan. Along with Sergey Brin, Page is responsible for Google, where he serves as the Chief Executive Officer. He is also the inventor of PageRank, which serves as the foundation of the search ranking algorithm of Google. He is now one of the richest men in the world, with he and Brin owning around 16 percent of the company’s stock.
3. Barack Obama
Barack Obama is the current President of the United States. A graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, he is the first African American president of the country. He started out as a community organizer in Chicago before he earned his law degree. He then became an Illinois State Senator from 1997 to 2004. In 2004, he became a United States Senator, drawing attention after giving out the keynote address in the Democratic Party National Convention. He ran for the presidency and won in 2008.
2. Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga is a singer, songwriter and producer. She burst into the scene in 2008 with her debut album called The Fame, as well as the extended play called The Fame Monster, which produced hits like “Poker Face,” “Bad Romance,” “Telephone” and “Alejandro.” She then followed it up with the 2011 album Born This Way that gave us hits like the title track, “Judas” and “The Edge of Glory.” She has won five Grammy Awards and 13 MTV Video Music Awards. She is considered as one of the most powerful and influential women in the world. She is also an active support of the LGBT movement. She is slated to release an album this year called Artpop.
1. Aung San Suu Kyi
Aung San Suu Kyi is a politician from Myanmar. She is the head of the opposition National League for Democracy. She is known for her grace and non-violence approach to confronting the military dictatorship in her country. She served under house arrest for a majority of the 21 years from 1989 to 2010, when she was finally given a full release. She received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 and has also garnered recognitions from countries like India, Venezuela, Canada and the United States.
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