LeBron James, Taylor Swift And Jimmy Fallon Make Fortune’s ‘World’s Greatest Leaders’ List

Fortune is saluting some of the globe’s most standout characters. For the second year in a row, a diverse mix of international influencers, celebrities, personalities and athletes—whom Fortune describes as “extraordinary men and women transforming business, govern­ment, philanthropy, and so much more”—are getting shout outs on the “World’s Greatest Leaders” list.

Taylor Swift clocks in at No. 6, two rungs below Pope Francis (who made the top spot in 2015) and five slots from Tim Cook, the Apple CEO who sits at the top this year. Here’s why Tay Tay is the lone pop star in these streets:

Taylor Swift didn’t become the highest-paid woman in the music business by accident. Pop’s savviest star has crossed swords with Spotify, embraced corporate sponsorship, and moved to secure dozens of trademarks (including phrases like “This sick beat”)—plus she has proved shrewder at honing a brand in the social media age than virtually any other person or company. And she’s done it without resorting to dumbed-down salacious gimmickry. (Swift, ahem, is arguably the anti–Miley Cyrus.) With 1989, the top-selling album in 2014, Swift’s efforts to ensure she gets paid for her music could have a huge ripple effect on the way artists are compensated in an era of free streaming.


Further down the list lie some familiar faces including the CEO and Chairman of Starbucks, Howard Schultz, at No. 17; Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg at No. 25; animal rights activist and former NBA player, Yao Ming, at No. 26; Cleveland Cavalier and hardwood beast, LeBron James, at No. 31; Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon at No. 45 and NBA commissioner Adam Silver at No. 47. Sidebar: The NBA is the only sports league recognized on the list this year.

Other omissions include President Barack Obama (Fortune explains why here), Oprah and Beyoncé. Better luck next year?

Scroll through the full list here.