Special Report

Most Admired People of the Year

Source: Jack Taylor / Getty Images

Bill Gates
> Title/Job: Co-founder of Microsoft Corporation, investor, and philanthropist

Bill Gates is the co-founder of Microsoft Corp. and and trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the biggest private charitable foundation in the world. The foundation focuses on improving the health of people all over the world. Gates, whose net worth is about $107 billion, has donated almost $36 billion to the foundation.

Source: Paul Morigi / Getty Images

Michelle Obama
> Title/Job: Former first lady

Michelle Obama has topped most-admired lists since she became first lady in 2009. Obama’s status as a most admired person was further enhanced following the publication of her best-selling memoir titled “Becoming” in 2018.

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Barack Obama
> Title/Job: Former U.S. president

The nation’s 44th president has kept a low profile since leaving office in 2017, writing books and accepting highly paid speaking engagements. Though he has occasionally criticized President Donald Trump, Obama, a Democrat, recently raised concerns about his party’s shift to the left, which he thinks will hurt its chances in the 2020 election.

While he remains a widely admired figure around the world, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate has also been criticized by people across the political spectrum for such policies as dialing up drone use in Pakistan, increasing deportations of illegal immigrants, and raising government spending.

Source: Paras Griffin / Getty Images

Oprah Winfrey
> Title/Job: Former talk-show host, activist

Oprah Winfrey leveraged her fame as talk-show host into political activism, campaigning for Barack Obama in 2008 and Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams in 2018. In January of 2018, Winfrey became the first African American woman to receive the Golden Globes’ Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement. She used the platform to advocate for empowering women and the importance of free speech. Her address was so well-received that it was suggested she should run for president in 2020.

Source: Ulet Ifansasti / Getty Images

Jackie Chan
> Title/Job: Actor, film producer/director

Jackie Chan has parlayed his martial arts skills, comedic instincts, and onscreen charisma to create an enduring film career. In 2016, the Hong Kong native became the first Chinese actor to receive an honorary Academy Award, which recognized his “distinctive international career.” At 65, Chan remains busy. He had three films released this year and has two more movies scheduled to come out in 2020. Aside from his film career, Chan has been a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF and supported causes such as those for the humane treatment of animals, conservation, and disaster relief.

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