21 Of The World’s Most Powerful People As Youngsters

Started from the bottom, now the whole team here.

1. Elizabeth II — Queen of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand

Taken when she was only an 18-year-old princess, this picture shows the young Elizabeth Alexandra Mary during her time in the Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War II, 1945.

2. Barack Obama — 44th U.S. President

Lisa Jack/Contour by Getty Images

Obama sits on the couch of a college friend smoking a cigarette in 1980, long before he would become president of the United States.

3. Hillary Clinton — Former U.S. Secretary of State and 2016 Presidential Candidate

Lee Balterman/The LIFE Picture Collection / Getty Images

Clinton, then Hillary Diane Rodham, sits for a photo shoot while attending Wellesley College, 1969.

4. Bill Clinton — 42nd U.S. President

In a rare encounter between a current and future president, a young Bill Clinton meets President John F. Kennedy in 1963.

5. Donald Trump — Entrepreneur and 2016 Presidential Candidate

Seth Poppel/Yearbook Library

The real estate mogul in his senior year of New York Military Academy, 1964.

6. Dilma Rousseff — President of Brazil


This mugshot shows the future Brazilian president apprehended for her participation in a guerrilla movement against the country’s military dictatorship.

7. Martin Luther King Jr. — Minister and Civil Rights Leader

Christine King Farri

King at the age of 6.

8. Vladimir Putin — President of Russia

Laski Diffusion / Getty Images

An 18-year-old Putin’s class photo, 1970.

9. Xi Jinping — General Secretary of the Communist Party of China


Xi Jinping, then party chief of Zhengding county, Hebei province, 1983.

10. Angela Merkel — Chancellor of Germany

Merkel, wearing a Free German Youth uniform, is awarded the Lessing Medal for outstanding social and academic performance, 1971.

11. John F. Kennedy — 35th U.S. President

Hulton Archive / Getty Images

This 1927 portrait shows the young president-to-be at age 10.

12. Joseph Stalin — Former Leader of the Soviet Union

Stalin at age 24 in 1902.

13. Fidel Castro — Former Prime Minister of Cuba

Fidel Castro relaxing at an outpost in the Sierra Maestra, 1957.

14. George W. Bush — 43rd U.S. President

George W. Bush as a baby with his parents, 1947.

15. Shinzō Abe — Prime Minister of Japan


In the center of the picture, kindergartner Abe sits on the lap of his grandfather, then-Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi.

16. Oprah Winfrey — Media Mogul

Rex Shutterstock / REX Shutterstock

Seventeen-year-old Winfrey shows off her “Miss Fire Prevention” trophy in her hometown of Nashville in 1971.

17. Albert Einstein — Theoretical Physicist

Einstein poses for a portrait at 14.

18. Bill Gates – Co-Founder of Microsoft

Rex Shutterstock / REX Shutterstock

A mugshot of Gates taken by the Albuquerque police in 1977 after he was arrested for traffic violation.

19. Steve Jobs – Co-Founder and Former CEO of Apple

Tom Munnecke / Getty Images

Jobs poses at the first West Coast Computer Faire in San Francisco, where the Apple II computer debuted in 1977.

20. Mahatma Gandhi — Leader of the Indian independence movement

A young Gandhi poses for a picture in 1906.

21. Pope Francis — 266th Pope of the Catholic Church

Jorge Mario Bergoglio, who would become Pope Francis, poses for a portrait as a teenager in Buenos Aires.

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