Person of the Year: Barack Obama (2012 Person Of The Year / BARACK OBAMA)

The campaign wasn't pretty, and the economy worse. But he reasserted himself as a potent architect for a changing America

No 2: The Fighter Malala Yousafzai (2012 The Short List / Malala Yousafzai)

In trying to silence this Pakistani schoolgirl, the Taliban amplified her voice. She is now a symbol of the struggle for women's rights all over the world

No 3: The Technologist Tim Cook (2012 The Short List / Tim Cook)

He inherited the most valuable company in the world from one of the greatest innovators in history. In 2012 he made apple his own

No 4: The Power Broker Mohamed Morsi (2012 The Short List / Mohamed Morsi)

Egypt's new president won kudos abroad and curses at home. What he does next could determine the shape of the middle east

No 5: The Discoverer Fabiola Gianotti (2012 The Short List / Fabiola Gianotti)

Finding the tiny Higgs boson took the biggest machine in the arsenal of physics--and help from one woman obsessed with the nature of reality

The Year In Kims (2012 In Brief)

One controls the media. The other is the leader of North Korea. Other than that, Kim Kardashian and Kim Jong Un have a lot in common

The Year In Things (2012 In Brief)

The definitive robot, recall, painting, pregnancy, IPO, blackout and reunion, plus 19 more top things of 2012

Setting The Stage For A Second Term (2012 Person Of The Year / Barack Obama)

Obama speaks on Dec. 12 with TIME's Rick Stengel, Radhika Jones and Michael Scherer about Lincoln, Marijuana, the Middle East and Hawaii moments

Changing Faces (2012 Person Of The Year / Barack Obama)

A demographic revolution is altering the political playbooks of both parties

The Decider (2012 / The Last Word)

Don't take our word for it. Choose your own person of the year

The Year In Highlights (2012 In Brief / HIGHLIGHTS)

Influential figures in culture, tech and more reveal what rocked their industries--and hint at good things to come