World's Greatest Leaders

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In business, government, philanthropy and the arts, and all over the globe, these men and women are transforming the world and inspiring others to do the same. Read more about our third annual list here.
RANK NAME TITLE AFFILIATION AGE
1 Jeff Bezos CEO Amazon 52
2 Angela Merkel Chancellor Germany 61
3 Aung San Suu Kyi Leader National League for Democracy 70
4 Pope Francis Pontiff Roman Catholic Church 79
5 Tim Cook CEO Apple 55
6 John Legend Recording artist and activist The Show Me Campaign 37
7 Christiana Figueres Executive Secretary UN Framework Convention on Climate Change 59
8 Paul Ryan Speaker U.S. House of Representatives 46
9 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Associate Justice U.S. Supreme Court 83
10 Sheikh Hasina Prime Minister Bangladesh 68
11 Nick Saban Head football coach The University of Alabama 64
12 Huateng “Pony” Ma Chairman and CEO Tencent 45
13 Sergio Moro Federal Judge Brazil 42
14 Bono Lead singer, Co-founder U2, One 55
15 Stephen Curry and Steve Kerr Point guard, head coach Golden State Warriors -
16 Bryan Stevenson Founder Equal Justice Initiative 56
17 Nikki Haley Governor South Carolina 44
18 Lin-Manuel Miranda Composer, lyricist, author "Hamilton" 36
19 Marvin Ellison CEO J.C. Penney 51
20 Reshma Saujani Founder and CEO Girls Who Code 40
21 Larry Fink CEO BlackRock 63
22 Scott Kelly and Mikhail Kornienko Crew members International Space Station -
23 David Miliband CEO International Rescue Committee 50
24 Anna Maria Chávez CEO Girl Scouts of the USA 48
25 Carla Hayden Nominee Library of Congress 63
26 Maurizio Macri President Argentina 57
27 Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi Co-founders Black Lives Matter -
28 Chai Jing Freelance journalist China 40
29 Moncef Slaoui Chairman of Vaccines GlaxoSmithKline 55
30 John Oliver Host and Executive Producer "Last Week Tonight" 38
31 Marc Edwards Professor Virginia Tech 51
32 Arthur Brooks President American Enterprise Institute 51
33 Rosie Batty Founder Luke Batty Foundation 54
34 Kristen Griest and Shaye Haver Rangers U.S. Army -
35 Denis Mukwege Founder Panzi Hospital 61
36 Christine Lagarde Managing Director IMF 60
37 Marc Benioff CEO Salesforce 51
38 Gina Raimondo Governor Rhode Island 44
39 Amina Mohammed Minister of Environment Nigeria 54
40 Domenico Lucano Mayor Riace, Italy 58
41 Melinda Gates and Susan Desmond-Hellmann Co-chair, CEO Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation -
42 Arvind Kejriwal Chief Minister New Delhi 47
43 Jorge Ramos Journalist Univision 58
44 Michael Froman U.S. Trade Representative Executive Office of the President 53
45 Mina Guli CEO Thirst 45
46 Ramón Mendéz Head of Climate Change Policy Uruguay 55
47 Bright Simons President, Founder Mpedigree 34
48 Justin Trudeau Prime Minister Canada 44
49 Clare Rewcastle Brown Editor and Founder Sarawak Report 56
50 Tshering Tobgay Prime Minister Bhutan 50
15

Stephen Curry and Steve Kerr

Point guard, head coach, Golden State Warriors
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Head coach Steve Kerr of the Golden State Warriors talks to Stephen Curry.
Photograph by Ezra Shaw — Getty Images

Perhaps it is their ordinariness that sets them apart. Neither would look out of place showing up to the noon run at the local Y, a couple of spindly, amiable, not-quite-tall but not-quite-short guys. Indeed, we look at Steve Kerr and Steph Curry and want to think: That could be us.

 

Of course, it couldn’t. They are the two best three-point marksman, by percentage, in NBA history. Kerr has more championship rings than he can fit on his shooting hand. Curry is en route to a second MVP while logging a historic scoring season, obliterating the previous mark for made three-pointers, skewing every analytic measure created, and redefining how a generation of kids views the game.

 

To spend time around the Warriors as they chase down history is to see each lead in his own way. Kerr is self-deprecating, with a dry wit. Repeatedly, he makes it clear that this is about the team, not him – declining media profiles, redirecting credit, adopting an “I’m-just-lucky-to-be-here” stance. Behind the scenes, he empowers those around him to make decisions, reinforces the value of work/life balance (he recently brought in Michael Lewis to talk to the team), prepares assiduously, and meets problems head-on, going to players directly rather than through an intermediary.

 

In Curry, Kerr presides over the rare star who is, as the coach puts it, is “humble yet arrogant”—arrogant on the court and humble everywhere else. Curry rarely speaks up – he lets fiery forward Draymond Green do the preaching and castigating—but teammates notice his hours of extra training, his focus on family, the joy he takes in the game, and how he conducts himself publicly, forever gracious and accommodating despite adoration that’s led to his jersey becoming the best-selling across all sports.

 

Together, the two men thrive on being underestimated but, as anyone who’s watched their end-of-practice free throw shooting duels knows, they are fierce competitors. Strive to win; enjoy the process. This is the combination that fuels the Warriors.

—Chris Ballard, a senior writer at Sports Illustrated and a Bay Area native

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Stephen Curry and Steve Kerr Are About to Make NBA History

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