1. Abraham Lincoln
In Abraham Lincoln’s time as President he reunified the nation, issued the Emancipation Proclamation, and passed the Thirteenth Amendment. Historians and public figures rank him as one of the top three greatest U.S. presidents, but he’s unquestionably the one with the best neck decor.
2. Helen Keller
Even though she was deaf and blind, Helen Keller learned to communicate and became a world-famous supporter of women’s suffrage, worker’s rights, and pacifism. She triumphed over every obstacle she encountered, and President Johnson awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom (one of the two highest honors for civilians) in September of 1964.
3. Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks was just one of many women during the Civil Rights Movement who refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white person. Their impact on history is tremendous, and their strength helps us question authority whenever possible.
4. Martin Luther King Jr.
MLK was an American hero. His leadership and courage during the Civil Rights Movement will never be forgotten, and his legacy reminds us to always treat each other with dignity and respect.
5. John Lennon
In addition to his immense musical talent, Lennon is known for his his political activism. He opposed the Vietnam War so vehemently that the Nixon administration tried to deport him, and many people believe he is the icon of the anti-war movement.
Oprah started out as just the host of a half-hour morning talk show in Chicago, but became an insanely successful media mogul. While guiding us through the ups and downs of our lives, she skillfully showed us how we’ll be alright as long as we have cashmere sweaters, jeans for our booties, and cupcakes.
7. Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs changed the way we communicate and view our world. It’s unlikely we’ll witness his kind of brilliance again in our lifetime. But we keep his memory alive every time we can see if someone is replying to our text, or ignoring us completely.
Madonna is 53 years old, looks incredible, and makes money dressing in gladiator attire. Many people consider her…kooky, but to women who work in themed diners she is a goddess.
9. Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks has acted in 66 movies, but he’s only 55 years old. It’s like the only time he’s sat down was to pose for this picture.
10. Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson had an incredibly difficult childhood. His father mentally and physically abused him, but Michael later credited his dad with teaching him discipline. He is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by the Guinness Book of World Records, and his album, Thriller, is the best selling album of all time.
11. J.K. Rowling
J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books have sold more than 400 million copies, and she is worth an estimated $1 billion. She reportedly came up with the series while on a train to London in 1990, and if there’s anyone who proves even the tiniest idea can be the best one you’ll ever have, it’s her.
12. Leonardo DiCaprio
Leonardo DiCaprio cares about the environment so much that he drives hybrid cars, flies commercially instead of on private jets, and has solar panels on his house. Obviously, we can do any of that. But are we really going to tell him we’re too lazy to find a grocery store that carries “tube free” toilet paper?
Despite her abundance of talent, people still criticize Adele over her weight. But the songwriter never allows the negative comments to affect her, and has said she feels “proud to represent the majority of women.”
14. Jeremy Lin
Jeremy Lin went from the D-League to the starting lineup of the New York Knicks, and leading them on a winning streak in February. His story doesn’t emphasize to the importance of practice, but instead indicates it’s always better if you suddenly learn to access your talent overnight.
15. Justin Bieber
Justin Bieber put videos of himself singing up on YouTube and became an international phenomenon. It kind of makes you wonder where all that footage from your “stilts phase” went.