Leadership Poll: Top 10 Leaders…Who’s on your List?

Samuel Bacharach's picture

I asked 22 Cornell graduate students to list 5 people they considered leaders – good, bad, or evil. Answers ranged from the obvious, MLK Jr., to the personal, lacrosse team captain, but what’s compelling are the top results. With the exception of Obama’s presence, the top 10 list has looked like this for a number of years.

Top 10 Leaders: Poll From Cornell Graduate Class

  1. Abraham Lincoln: 11
  2. Martin Luther King Jr.: 11
  3. Barack Obama: 8
  4. Mahatma Ghandi: 6
  5. Franklin D. Roosevelt: 5
  6. George Washington: 4
  7. Adolf Hitler: 4
  8. Bill Clinton: 4
  9. School Sports Coach: 3
  10. Friend or Family Member: 3

Honorable mentions: Jesus Christ, JBJ, Mother Theresa, Warren Buffet, and Napoleon

Now, let me ask you the same question: In your opinion who are the top 5 people you consider to be a leader?