- Even if you don't follow the business world that much, you've probably heard of billionare Warren Buffet and Berksirehataway. Even in today's tough economic climate, he is one of America's richest men and much like the old solgan of EF Hutton, when he has something to say, people listen. I didn't find a Twitter account and Facebook nor MySpace sites, but I did find a Wikipedia entry.
- Chances are good that you migh have heard of Steve Jobs and that "little"company he co-founded. His departure and return to Apple are legendary. He is credited with several products and sevices that have revolutionized their market segments including iTunes, iPod, and the iPhone. I didn't find a Twitter acccount and Facebook nor MySpace site, but I did find a Wikipedia entry.
- Microsoft founder Bill Gates is already well known within business and technology circles and this was before he started the Bill & Melinda Gate Foundation. If you wonder whats on his mind you can check out his notes website. He has a Wikipedia entry and it was big news when he openned up a Twitter account and he got over 100,000 followers in just 8 hours. Although he reportedly stopped using Facebook because he had too many friends, his foundation has a Faceboook site and Twitter account. He talked about using Twitter and his foundation with Jon Stewart.
- Ross Perot is a legendary figure founding EDS (Electronic Data Systems) and later founding Perot Systems. He ran for U.S. President in 1992. In a now famous presidential debate with then President George H. Bush, and Democratic candidate and future President Clinton he made a statement "there will be a giant sucking sound going south." when talking about NAFTA and various other Free Trade ageements. You can read a transcript of the debate at the New York Times. You can see various clips of it on YouTube. You can still see some of his famous charts at Perotcharts. I found a Twitter account but I'm not sure if it his really him or not since the website listed refers to an old webpate at Perot Systems, he does however have a Wikipedia entry.
- Jack Dorsey is one of the founders of Twitter. It would be interesting to know about his toughts on what he was creating and what direction he sees Twitter going in, and of course what projects does he have on the horizion? He has a Wikipedia entry and of course he has a Twitter account!
- Mark Zuckerberg is one of the best known cofounders of Facebook. Facebook overtook Google as the most visited site in America and some people are predicting that it will be bigger that Google. You always have to wonder what is next on the horizion for Facebook? He has a Wikipedia entry, a Twitter account, and of course he is on Facebook.
- Kevin Rose found Digg the social news site where the users determine what is on the front page. The site was recently redesigned and users are getting used to it. He has a Wikipedia entry and a Twitter account.
- Jimmy Wales is cofounder of the online encyclopedia site Wikipedia. Although there has certainly been controversary about the accuracy of some of the entries (as well as who can edit them), it is a quick way to find out information about various topics. Of course, Jimmy Wales has a Wikipedia entry.
- Sir Richard Branson is the man behind the Virgin group, everything from music to an airlines. He writes about various topics at his blog. He had a Wikipedia entry and a Twitter account.
- Jim Cramer is a well known analyst and commentator at CNBC. His Mad Money section at The Street.com has a lot of active readers. He has a Wikipedia entry and a Twitter account.
- Lee Iacoca is a legend in the Auto Industry. He is often credited with creating the Ford Mustang. When all is said and done he likely to remembered as the man that led the efforts to save Chrysler when they nearly went bankrupt in the 70's (too bad his successors didn't feel so driven). He recently wrote Where Have All The Leaders Gone, a NY Times Best Seller that is critical of our leaders today. He has a Wikipedia entry and his foundation can be found here.
- Ted Turner is the man behind CNN (Cable News Network) and several other early cable networks. CNN was the first American based television network that covered news round the clock and around the world. I have to wonder if the development of cable didn't somehow set the public acceptance of the internet, how would growth and acceptance of the internet have looked if we hadn't had cable television opening our minds to the possiblity of information and intertainment coming from outside the normal televsion networks at the time? Those of you that are Jane Fonda fans migh remember that the tow of them were married for several years. He has a Wikipedia entry and his foundation can be found here.
I find it interesting that many of the business leaders listed here have felt compelled to create a foundation or charity that gives something back. I recently ran accross an article (The Gospel of Wealth) that discussed modern day philanthric efforts of Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. The title from the article is also not coincidently shared by a book by one of America's best known capitalists, Andrew Carnegie. Although Carngie was a ruthless, take no prisioners tycoon, later on his religious roots inspired him to set out to give away his wealth before he died. Before passing away in 1919 he had given away $350 million (approximately $4.3 billion, if calculated in US dollars based on today’s figures). The money that he hadn't managed to give away was given to foundations and charities. Carnegie believed that wealth was more than money. He believed wealth came as a result of ideas, risk-taking, talents, and other ways of creating and contributing to society. While Cargnegie's philanthropy was primiary based or influenced by his religious beliefs and background, Gates and Buffet's efforts are more about convincing others in position of wealth that giving back is the right thing to do.
- You've probably heard of the Komen Race for the Cure, Nancy Brinker founded the organization as part of a promise she made to her sister (Susan Komen) to do everything that that she could to stop breast cancer and make the lives of the affected and their families better. She has proven that one person can make a difference and guaranteed that her sister's name will live on long after she is gone. Brinker has also served as the Ambassador to Hungary from 2001-2003. She has a Wikipedia entry as well as the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Komen.org also has a Twitter account and is active in Facebook.
So far we've met some Internet Stars; Leaders in Motivation & Inspiration; Authors; Actors, Directors, and Comedians; Musicians; Athletes; and Business Leaders and Pioneers; who'll be next? Be sure to look for 100+ People That I Want to Meet Part 8 and the rest of the series and you can read the intro here. Feel free to subscribe to this blog via email or your rss reader, there are several options available in the upper righthand corner of this blog.
Photo credit: "Chess pion" courtesy of iprole.