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Joe Biden, Dolly Parton, Prince Harry, Meghan Markle Make Time’s ‘100 Most Influential People’

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle
Prince Harry & Meghan Markle

September 16, (THEWILL) – Time magazine has published its annual list of the 100 most influential people, with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle gracing the cover of the magazine’s print issue.

The 2021 list also includes US President Joe Biden, legendary country music idol Dolly Parton, and several global icons.

Dolly Parton

With the list splashed across six categories—Icons, Pioneers, Titans, Artists, Leaders, Innovators—the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made the list in the “Icons” category.

In a profile about Harry and Meghan, who moved to the U.S. last year after stepping down from their official roles in the royal family, chef Jose Andres spoke about the drive that motivates both of them.

“When Prince Harry was Apache helicopter gunner in the British military in 2013, he was conducting a now-viral interview when a loud bang rang out. In one swift motion, he stands up, rips off his microphone and runs toward the action,” Andres wrote.

“That same sense of urgency drives Meghan, now the Duchess of Sussex, who has long been an active humanitarian and a powerful advocate for women and girls around the world,” Andres continued.

Since finding each other, getting married and moving to California, the couple have founded Archewell, which has a production, audio and charity leg. “They don’t just opine. They run toward the struggle,” Andres added.

Joining the couple in the “Icon” category is country legend Dolly Parton, tennis star Naomi Osaka and siblings Muna and Mohammed el Kurd, both Palestinian activists.

Britney Spears, who made waves this year as she made legal moves to end her 13-year conservatorship, is also on the list, with a profile by Paris Hilton.

“When most people think of Britney Spears, they think of Britney the superstar. She’s iconic. A legend. One of the most influential artists in pop-music history,” Hilton wrote.

“When I think of Britney Spears, I see the sweetest soul. A mother. A friend. A fighter. A young woman who grew up in the tabloid culture of the 2000s, when the paparazzi machine was accepted, unforgiving and cruel,” she continued.

Dozens of other powerful figures fill the pages of Time’s annual influential article. Singer Billie Eilish, civil rights lawyer Ben Crump and Team USA Olympic gold medalist Sunisa Lee made the “Pioneers” category.

Lee’s teammate, Simone Biles, made the “Titans” category, after competing in and then removing herself from some events during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Biles, hailed as the greatest gymnast of all time, received praise for prioritising her mental health and deciding it was best to step back from the competition.

Biles is joined on the list by screenwriter and producer Shonda Rhimes, music producers Timbaland and Swizz Beats, Apple CEO Tim Cook and Olympic runner Allyson Felix.

Actress Kate Winslet, rapper and singer Bad Bunny and Academy Award-winning director Chloe Zhao made the “Artists” list.

Singer Lil Nas X and “Saturday Night Live” actor Bowen Yang, who by being unapologetically themselves provide representation for the LGBTQ community in their respective fields, are also on the list.

Several world leaders and politicians, including US President Joe Biden, former President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping made the “Leaders” list. US Vice President Kamala Harris, the country’s first female, Black and Asian vice president, was also recognized.

Congresswoman Liz Cheney, one of the few Republican leaders who was outspoken about the January 6 insurrection and is now on the committee investigating the attack, is also on this list, as is former Georgia gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams, a voting rights advocate credited with influencing the state’s record voter turnout during the 2020 presidential election.

On the “Innovators” list is SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk, General Motors chair and chief executive officer Mary Barra, and John Nkengasong, the first director of Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Sharing a spot on the list are women from three generations of the same family —Willow Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith and Adrienne Banfield Norris, the hosts of “Red Table Talk.”