Barack Obama is the first African-American President. That alone is a historic achievement, but the fact that it was such a difficult campaign, in which he came back from behind, makes it even more significant. Throughout the campaign, Obama had tremendous confidence and discipline, and even when others doubted him, he didn't doubt himself.
I nominate the waiting billions. In 2008 the world renewed its commitment to the Millennium Development Goals: its promises to the global billions of poor and disenfranchised. These people are waiting for us to meet our deadline by 2015. They are waiting for us to keep our promises. Let's get our promises back on track so they don't have to wait any longer.
Rarely in the course of human events does the election of one individual seem to make everybody around the world stop and take notice. The next-day headlines were evidence that something transformative had happened. Barack Obama resonated with the hopes and aspirations of not just Americans but so many globally who yearn for a better tomorrow.
My choice is single mothers and grandmothers, who provide the economics, love, health care, discipline and confidence to so many of the next generation around the world whom they are raising. A great example of their skill is our new President-elect. I've seen this phenomenon firsthand on every continent. They are the true heroines of the new world.
WHOM WOULD YOU CHOOSE? Vote for who you think should be the 2008 Person of the Year at time.com/poywalkup