Barack Obama is Named African American of the Year

December 1, 2008 By:
Barack Obama is Named African American of the Year

Essence magazine has complied their list for 2008's most influential African Americans, and it's no surprise to us that Barack Obama comes in at number one.

Editor-in-chief Angela Burt-Murray says, "President-elect Barack Obama's historic win was the pinnacle of an amazing year in African-American achievement. ESSENCE is so proud to acknowledge the top 25 African-Americans who followed suit with extraordinary steps in news, music, film, politics, activism and fashion and emerged as the game changers of 2008."

Obama is joined on the list by celebs like Kanye, Will Smith, and Queen Latifah. Where's Oprah on this list? Guess she can't win every year! Here's the full list of Essence's top 25:

Barack Obama - President-elect
Donna Brazile - Political Strategist, Commentator
Gwen Ifill - Journalist
Valerie Jarrett - President and CEO, The Habitat Company, Adviser to Barack Obama
Queen Latifah - Singer, Actress, Jenny Craig Spokesperson
Will Smith - Box Office Titan
Wyclef Jean - Musician, Activist Kanye West - Hip-Hop Artist, Producer - Musician, Activist
Tyler Perry - Writer, Actor, Director, Producer, Studio Owner
Michel Martin - Tell Me More, Host
Adaora Udoji - The Take Away, Host
Michele Norris - All Things Considered, Host
Bev Smith - The Bev Smith Show, Host
Farai Chideya - News & Notes, Host
Van Jones - Founder and President, Green For All
Ian Smith, M.D. - Diet Expert, Author, Television Host
David Paterson - Governor, New York
Bethann Hardison - Advocate for Black Models
Phill Wilson - CEO, Black Aids Institute
Reverend Leah Daughtry - CEO, Democratic National Convention
Mark Whitaker - Washington Bureau Chief, NBC News
Candace Parker - WNBA Star
Patrick Robinson - Lead Fashion Designer, GAP
James Rucker - Internet Civil Rights Activist

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