Popular Opinion
30.4k voters

Famous Role Models We'd Like to Meet In Person

Updated March 25, 2020 419.2k votes 30.4k voters 900.3k views403 items

List RulesVote up the public figures, living or passed, with whom you'd most like to spend a little quality time.

These are the famous folks it would be most exciting to meet in person, as ranked by the wisdom of the crowd. Some of the best people to ever live make great role models for people of all ages. Who doesn't love a good celebrity putting forth positive energy and only good in the world? Maybe you've dreamed of having tea with Mother Teresa, or just shaking the hand of Honest Abe. Maybe you just want to say "hey" to Taylor Swift. This list includes both modern day and historical role models, dead and alive - some of the most inspirational, creative, selfless, and intelligent people ever to have walked the earth. Throughout history, common people have sought to surround ourselves with popular folks who can inspire and influence others. Anyone can add their personal role models to this list, making it an accurate, real-time ranking of the most interesting and inspiring role models in the world. From idols to heroes, these are the people other people most aspire to meet. So, add your two cents and see how your personal heroes stack up against the crowd's.
Photo:
...more
  • Leonardo da Vinci1
    6,773
    2,142

    Leonardo da Vinci

    Dec. at 67 (1452-1519)

    BirthplaceVinci, Italy

    Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci was an Italian polymath, painter, sculptor, architect,...  more

    More Leonardo da Vinci 

    #76 of 472 The Most Interesting Star Trek Characters#130 of 439 Famous Men You'd Want to Have a Beer With

  • Jesus Christ2
    8,927
    3,487
    Jesus (c. 4 BC – c. AD 30 / 33), also referred to as Jesus of Nazareth and Jesus Christ, was a...  more

    More Jesus Christ 

    Here Is All The Physical Evidence That Jesus Christ Was A Real PersonHere Are 12 Theories About The Mysterious Lost Years Of Jesus Christ

  • Michelangelo3
    1,690
    628

    Michelangelo

    Dec. at 89 (1475-1564)

    BirthplaceCaprese Michelangelo, Italy

    Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, commonly known as Michelangelo, was an Italian...  more

    More Michelangelo 

    #58 of 250 The Best Gay Authors#36 of 753 People We Wish Were Still Alive

  • Plato4
    3,961
    2,087
    Plato (; PLAY-toe Greek: Πλάτων Plátōn, pronounced [plá.tɔːn] in Classical Attic; 428/427 or...  more

    More Plato 

    A List of Famous Plato Quotes#6 of 347 The Most Important Leaders In World History

  • William Shakespeare5
    3,489
    1,744

    William Shakespeare

    Dec. at 52 (1564-1616)

    BirthplaceStratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom

    William Shakespeare (bapt. 26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) was an English poet, playwright, and...  more

    More William Shakespeare 

    What It Was Like To Be At A Shakespearean PlayThe All-Time Best Shakespeare Characters

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart6
    3,239
    1,875

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Dec. at 35 (1756-1791)

    BirthplaceSalzburg, Austria

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791), baptised as Johannes Chrysostomus...  more

    More Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 

    17 Bizarre, Mind-Blowing Facts and Stories About Mozart#8 of 16 16 Famous Bodies From History Found In Inconspicuous Places

  • Charles Darwin7
    1,585
    720

    Charles Darwin

    Dec. at 73 (1809-1882)

    BirthplaceThe Mount, Shrewsbury, United Kingdom

    Charles Robert Darwin, (; 12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was an English naturalist,...  more

    More Charles Darwin 

    What Actually Happened Right After The Theory of Evolution Was Published?#9 of 15 The 15 Most Famous Introverts In World History

  • Charles Dickens8
    1,706
    717

    Charles Dickens

    Dec. at 58 (1812-1870)

    BirthplacePortsmouth, United Kingdom

    Charles John Huffam Dickens (; 7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social...  more

    More Charles Dickens 

    16 Extremely Dark Things You'd Never Suspect Charles Dickens Actually Did#46 of 171 The Best Short Story Writers of All Time

  • J. R. R. Tolkien9
    1,768
    882

    J. R. R. Tolkien

    Dec. at 81 (1892-1973)

    BirthplaceBloemfontein, South Africa

    John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (; 3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973) was an English writer, poet,...  more

    More J. R. R. Tolkien 

    The History Of Lord Of The Rings For Casual Fans, So You Don't Have To Read 10,000 Pages#8 of 303 The Best Novelists of All Time

  • Isaac Newton10
    1,847
    1,189

    Isaac Newton

    Dec. at 84 (1643-1727)

    BirthplaceWoolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, United Kingdom

    Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27) was an English mathematician,...  more

    More Isaac Newton 

    The Surprisingly Sad, Strange Life of Sir Isaac Newton#12 of 22 We Asked, You Answered: If You Could Be Any Dead Historical Figure For 24 Hours, Who Would It Be?

  • Virginia Centurione Bracelli11
    1,025
    614

    Virginia Centurione Bracelli

    Dec. at 64 (1587-1651)

    BirthplaceGenoa, Italy

    Saint Virginia Centurione Bracelli (2 April 1587 – 15 December 1651) was an Italian Roman...  more
  • Ludwig van Beethoven12
    1,099
    599

    Ludwig van Beethoven

    Dec. at 57 (1770-1827)

    BirthplaceBonn, Germany

    Ludwig van Beethoven ( (listen); German: [ˈluːtvɪç fan ˈbeːthoːfn̩] (listen); baptised 17...  more

    More Ludwig van Beethoven 

    18 Grim Facts About The Life Of Beethoven You Never Learned As A Kid#3 of 368 The Best Classical Composers

  • Sonja Henie13
    1,331
    767

    Sonja Henie

    Dec. at 57 (1912-1969)

    BirthplaceOslo, Norway

    Sonja Henie (8 April 1912 – 12 October 1969) was a Norwegian figure skater and film star. She...  more

    More Sonja Henie 

    #32 of 1,427 The Best Athletes Of All Time#104 of 240 The Best Female Athletes of All Time

  • Steve Irwin14
    1,030
    453

    Steve Irwin

    Dec. at 44 (1962-2006)

    BirthplaceEssendon, Australia

    Stephen Robert Irwin (22 February 1962 – 4 September 2006), nicknamed "The Crocodile Hunter",...  more

    More Steve Irwin 

    22 Photos Of Robert Irwin That Would Make His Father, Steven Irwin, Proud#2 of 24 People Are Sharing The Celebrity Death That Hit Them Hardest And We're Already Crying

  • Fridtjof Nansen15
    1,663
    1,175

    Fridtjof Nansen

    Dec. at 69 (1861-1930)

    BirthplaceEurope, Northern Europe, Nordic countries, Norway, Oslo

    Fridtjof Wedel-Jarlsberg Nansen (Norwegian: [²fɾɪtːjɔf ˈnɑnsn̩]; 10 October 1861 – 13 May...  more

    More Fridtjof Nansen 

    #18 of 87 People Who Made The World A Better Place#905 of 1,295 Every Person Who Has Been Immortalized in a Google Doodle

  • Jane Goodall16
    1,262
    835

    BirthplaceLondon, United Kingdom

    Dame Jane Morris Goodall (; born Valerie Jane Morris-Goodall on 3 April 1934), formerly...  more

    More Jane Goodall 

    #121 of 904 Celebrity Death Pool 2021#154 of 199 Famous Women You'd Want to Have a Beer With

  • George Washington17
    2,162
    1,338

    George Washington

    Dec. at 67 (1732-1799)

    BirthplacePopes Creek, Colony of Virginia, British America

    George Washington was the first President of the United States, the Commander-in-Chief of the...  more

    More George Washington 

    What Was George Washington's Private Life Like?#5 of 44 Which US Presidents Do You Wish Were In Charge Right Now?

  • Edgar Allan Poe18
    2,127
    1,169

    Edgar Allan Poe

    Dec. at 40 (1809-1849)

    BirthplaceBoston, Massachusetts

    Edgar Allan Poe (; born Edgar Poe; January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American writer,...  more

    More Edgar Allan Poe 

    16 Bizarre Facts About the Tragic Life of Edgar Allan Poe#2 of 330 The All-Time Greatest Horror Writers

  • Robin Williams19
    1,978
    961

    Robin Williams

    Dec. at 63 (1951-2014)

    BirthplaceChicago, Illinois, United States of America

    Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian....  more

    More Robin Williams 

    The Best Ever Robin Williams Movies#3 of 233 The Funniest Stand Up Comedians Of All Time

  • Albert Einstein20
    5,022
    2,633

    Albert Einstein

    Dec. at 76 (1879-1955)

    BirthplaceUlm, Germany

    Albert Einstein ( EYEN-styne; German: [ˈalbɛɐ̯t ˈʔaɪnʃtaɪn] (listen); 14 March 1879 – 18 April...  more

    More Albert Einstein 

    Oddball Facts About Albert Einstein's Eccentricity#43 of 432 The Most Important Leaders in U.S. History

  • Aristotle21
    1,982
    1,328

    Aristotle

    Dec. at 62 (383 BC-321 BC)

    BirthplaceStagira, Greece

    Aristotle (; Greek: Ἀριστοτέλης Aristotélēs, pronounced [aristotélɛːs]; 384–322 BC) was a...  more

    More Aristotle 

    The Best Aristotle Quotes#8 of 15 How History's Most Famous Extroverts Changed History

  • John F. Kennedy22
    2,857
    2,079

    John F. Kennedy

    Dec. at 46 (1917-1963)

    BirthplaceBrookline, Massachusetts, USA

    John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963), often referred to by initials JFK...  more

    More John F. Kennedy 

    What Happened Immediately After JFK Was Assassinated?Small But Poignant Details From JFK’s Funeral

  • Oscar Wilde23
    1,155
    742

    Oscar Wilde

    Dec. at 46 (1854-1900)

    BirthplaceIreland, Ireland, Europe, Dublin

    Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) was an Irish poet...  more

    More Oscar Wilde 

    The Best Oscar Wilde Quotes#245 of 339 The Funniest People Of All Time

  • Elsa Brändström24
    1,635
    1,193

    Elsa Brändström

    Dec. at 60 (1888-1948)

    BirthplaceSaint Petersburg, Russia

    Elsa Brändström (26 March 1888 – 4 March 1948) was a Swedish nurse and philanthropist. She was...  more
  • Galileo Galilei25
    1,481
    946

    Galileo Galilei

    Dec. at 78 (1564-1642)

    BirthplacePisa, Italy

    Galileo Galilei ( GAL-il-AY-oh, also US: -⁠EE-oh, Italian: [ɡaliˈlɛːo ɡaliˈlɛi]; 15 February...  more

    More Galileo Galilei 

    #18 of 134 The Most Controversial Writers of All Time#5 of 22 22 Historical Figures With Preserved Body Parts You Can Still Visit Today