best of 2011 The Most Influential People of 2011

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The most influential people of 2011 made us laugh, brought us hope, widened our horizons and changed the way we live our lives. These people all made a difference during 2011 in one way or another be it from activism, entertainment, politics or innovation. While we're all influenced by different things, these select few stand above and beyond the rest as the most influential of 2011.

Perhaps some of the most influential people in the world are those who have changed the world by their innovations. Steve Jobs, co-founder and the brainchild behind Apple, was both one of the most influential persons of 2011, with his continued industry-leading gadget releases, and also one we'll miss the most from 2011 as he lost his battle with cancer in October.

Others influenced the way we found entertainment, but not from a gadget but rather from television, music and movies. These influential celebrities, such as television mogul Oprah Winfrey, pop singer Justin Bieber and "Mad Men" mastermind Matthew Weiner, all brought something different to the table but provided us with hours of entertainment.

Even other members of the most influential people of 2011 list brought us something intangible: hope. Politicians, such as President Barack Obama, were key for keeping our hopes up but one politician in particular showed us that miracles really do happen. Representative Gabrielle Giffords, a Congresswoman from Arizona, survived a gunshot wound to the head and fights to return to her former self each day.

Whether it was from their innovation, their entertainment or simply their willingness to persist through adversity, each of the people on this list were the most influential of 2011. We are all inspired by different people so tell us who was influential to you during the year by adding your own list of the most influential people of 2011 below!

1
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Steve Jobs is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Steve Jobs Businessperson, Entrepreneur, Inventor

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2
+ - 49 1
Randy Savage is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Randy Savage Rapper, Wrestler, Baseball player

3
+ - 177 214
Barack Obama is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Barack Obama Politician, Author, Law professor

4
+ - 139 156
Mark Zuckerberg is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Mark Zuckerberg Programmer, Businessperson, Entrepreneur

5
+ - 50 33
Kristen Wiig is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Kristen Wiig Comedian, Film Producer, Screenwriter

6
+ - 75 141
Gabrielle Giffords is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Gabrielle Giffords Businessperson, Politician

7
+ - 71 102
Christopher Nolan is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Christopher Nolan Editor, Film Producer, Screenwriter

8
+ - 88 176
Michelle Obama is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Michelle Obama Writer, Lawyer

9
+ - 47 50
Judd Apatow is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Judd Apatow Television director, Comedian, Television producer

10
+ - 52 108
Ryan Gosling is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Ryan Gosling Activist, Musician, Film Producer

11
+ - 55 118
Herman Cain is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Herman Cain Businessperson, Politician, Journalist

12
+ - 58 102
Matt Damon is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Matt Damon Spokesperson, Television producer, Film Producer

13
+ - 52 91
Colin Firth is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Colin Firth Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor

14
+ - 38 59
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridg... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011

15
+ - 88 146
Oprah Winfrey is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Oprah Winfrey Businessperson, Journalist, Television producer

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16
+ - 31 107
Larry Page is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Larry Page Businessperson, Entrepreneur, Computer scientist

17
+ - 45 77
Ricky Gervais is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Ricky Gervais Television director, Comedian, Television producer

18
+ - 34 127
Michele Bachmann is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Michele Bachmann Politician, Attorney at law, Lawyer

19
+ - 29 60
Charlie Sheen is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Charlie Sheen Television director, Television producer, Film Producer

20
+ - 54 65
Lionel Messi is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Lionel Messi Footballer

21
+ - 72 162
Lady Gaga is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Lady Gaga Fashion designer, Record producer, Businessperson

22
+ - 64 86
Julian Assange is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Julian Assange Spokesperson, Programmer, Editor

23
+ - 19 116
Reed Hastings is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Reed Hastings Businessperson, Entrepreneur

24
+ - 46 55
Paul Ryan is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Paul Ryan Politician

25
+ - 35 93
John Boehner is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
John Boehner Businessperson, Politician, Management consulting

26
+ - 28 77
Chris Colfer is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Chris Colfer Film Producer, Screenwriter, Author

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+ - 23 125
Matthew Weiner is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Matthew Weiner Television director, Television producer, Screenwriter

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+ - 12 41
Harold Camping is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Harold Camping Civil engineer, Author, Radio personality

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+ - 26 103
Arianna Huffington is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Arianna Huffington Editor, Commentator, Politician

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Kanye West is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Kanye West Film Score Composer, Fashion designer, Record producer

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+ - 9 38
Charles Koch is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Charles Koch Businessperson, Industrialist

32
+ - 9 38
Jeff Bezos is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Jeff Bezos Businessperson, Entrepreneur

33
+ - 7 15
Nina Dobrev is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Nina Dobrev Gymnast, Model, Actor

34
+ - 26 111
Justin Bieber is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Justin Bieber Record producer, Musician, Singer-songwriter

35
+ - 5 18
Kim Jong-un is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Kim Jong-un Politician

36
+ - 3 13
Osama bin Laden is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Osama bin Laden Businessperson, Engineer

37
+ - 5 33
Steven Levitan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Steven Levitan Television director, Businessperson, Television producer

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+ - 4 33
Cory Booker is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Influential People of 2011
Cory Booker Politician, Lawyer