10 Men With the Capacity to Change the World

Premium Membership, The Good Men Project

About the Editors

We're all in this together.


  1. Kirsten (in MT) says:

    This list is atrocious.

    • Kirsten (in MT) says:

      Scratch Steve Jobs, a guy who is dead. Leading this list with a corpse is kind of depressing. He will not be changing the world anymore. What he has left behind will have an amazing residual influence, yes, but he no longer will create change.

      Add Gene Sharp, founder of The Albert Einstein Institution which is dedicated to advancing the study and use of strategic nonviolent action in conflicts throughout the world. His work on non-violent resistance has been influential worldwide and cited as an influence on dissidents in Tunisia, Egypt, Iran, Serbia, the Ukraine, Poland, Burma, the Singing Revolution in Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia, and more.

      Scratch Michael Moore, self-serving attention whore and hypocritical rich guy who, after attacking a tax credit for movie makers, cashed in on it himself to the tune of $1 million. Conveniently, he was also a member of the advisory council which was responsible for approving his own application for the credit.

      Add Burt Rutan, the person responsible for more innovations in modern aviation than any living engineer, especially notable for winning the $10 million Ansari X-Prize with the world’s first privately-built manned spacecraft to reach space, SpaceShipOne.

      Scratch Dr. Mahmet Oz, snake oil salesman of pseudoscience.

      Add Dr. Paolo Macchiarini, pioneer of regenerative medicine, who has successfully grown tracheas from adult stem cells and transplanted them into almost a dozen patients in the last two years. He is waiving his fee in order to bring down the cost of this life-saving treatment for a woman who I know who will hopefully be his next transplant recipient.

      Scratch Brad Pitt whose big humanitarian accomplishments seem to be writing big checks and getting his picture taken in useful places, conveniently helping out his own publicity and popularity in the process. That’s nice. I’m glad he does that. Not exactly unique Change The World material, though.

      Add Joshua Silver, atomic physicist developing affordable, adaptive eyewear to help solve the vision problems of a billion poor people around the globe in the next decade.

      Scratch Warren Buffett, rich beneficiary who profited handsomely on the backs of working taxpayers from the corporate bailouts he pushed for. Not out for personal gain, MY ASS!

      Add Salman Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, an online educational platform providing a free world-class education to anyone anywhere.

      • Chiara Lestuzzi says:

        Absolutely right! Prof Macchiarini is really working for changing lives of severely sick patients (add the little Hannah Warren from Seoul, born without the windpipe, now aged 15 months and waiting for a transplant too). I’d add also Dr Rick Hodes, caring of young sick cancer, neurological and heart patients in Ethiopia, who even adopted some of his patients without a family.

  2. I must object to #6, the notorious quack “Dr. Oz” who receives so much free publicity through Oprah.

    Oz promotes homeopathy, acupuncture, energy healing, and herbalism–all unproven and in many cases, unsafe. He’s doing a serious disservice to genuinely ill people and the medical profession in general.


    Yes, listening to your patients and forming a personal connection makes many people feel better emotionally… but that’s a far cry from actually helping them _physically_, which Oz is apparently uninterested in.

  3. Tom Matlack says:

    Agree with the sentiment but not necessarily the list. How about Bill Gates not for his software but for his foundation? No other man has done more than he has to try to prevent curable disease or look hard at how to fix education.

  4. Mistinguette S says:

    Just glancing at the list tells me something about the author’s worldview: in a country that is only 75% white, only one person of color (two if you count Dr. Oz)

  5. I agree with copyleft — I’m not a fan of Dr. Oz. But I wish Jon Stewart would run for president.

    • Oh, Jon Stewart’s fantastic, there’s no doubt about that. A great entertainer AND an unwilling public servant.

  6. We all have our own lists of “great men that can change the world.” I suggest we all create our own, put our name at the top, and get to work making our lives wonderful and making the world a better place. If the Good Men Project stands for anything it is that there are Good Men everywhere and we all can make a difference.
    A group of good men (and women) came together in my own Mendocino County to pass a tax initiative that would save our libraries. We needed a 2/3 vote to pass, which we knew would be difficult in these tough economic times. We got 75%. To paraphrase Margaret Mead, Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed men can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

  7. I too would want to see a more diverse group of men recognized, but have always felt that there are men doing enormous good who may never be recognized.
    An amazing man and role model is Geoffrey Canada in NYC who created the Harlem Children’s Zone, providing educational support and activities for children and families, and better models of manhood.
    His impact is reducing violence in neighborhoods, strengthening children’s connections to education and competency, and re-defining manhood as caring, compassion, connected to children/youth/community, can handle himself amongst peers AND want to read a book to a child or help him with a writing or math problem.

  8. All Americans… of course!

    • Chiara Lestuzzi says:

      Amesma is right: all Americans… and what about the women? Aung Sang Soo Ki, for instance, who is peacefully changing things in Myanmar, and the Nobel Prize Shirini Ebadi. Both, battling for freedom and human rights in their own countries, will positively influence other countries.

      Most of all, how can Dr. Oz (I know little about him, since I live not in the U.S.) change THE WORLD? I’d rather put in the list men (and women) who made something significant for world citizens, not american only! Among physicians, I’d suggest another name: Dr. Gino Strada, an italian surgeon who founded hospitals for war victims in Afghanistan and a cardiologic hospital in Khartoum. .

Speak Your Mind