Occupation: Director, University of Chicago Institute of Politics
Obama's last campaign is over, but that hardly diminishes Axelrod's influence. He aims to transform U. of C.—his new home base—into a nationally recognized political think tank ˆ la Harvard's Kennedy School and inspire the next generation of students to pursue careers as journalists, strategists, even candidates. If that sounds too wonky, be advised that Axelrod remains the man to call for advice, whether you're an aspiring office seeker, Rahm Emanuel, or the president.
Photograph: CHRIS STRONG