Special Section: 200 Faces for the Future

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200 Faces from the Future

While the lack of leadership is everywhere felt and deplored, there are in America a great many leaders, both actual and potential—or so TIME believes.

The forces that hinder them from coming to the fore are huge, as the preceding cover story points out. But we are convinced that America has men and women who can assume leadership roles in the right circumstances—and given the right spirit in the country.

That is why, in the following 27 pages, TIME presents a portfolio of 200 young American leaders. The number 200 is arbitrary. So is the definition of youth, which ends at 45, at least in our judgment and in that of a contemporary dictionary. We know that growth is possible well past 45 and that many people do not discover their leadership qualities until much later. But we wanted to draw attention to a rising generation.

In setting this age limit (ruling out anyone who has reached 46 by the date that this issue first appears on the newsstands), we had to exclude, often by a narrow margin, some remarkable figures. Treasury Secretary William Simon missed by eight months, and Adwoman Mary Wells Lawrence by 44 days. As it turned out, the difficult part was not finding 200 people who met our criterion of leadership but confining the list to that number.

What indeed was our criterion? The touchstone was civic or social impact.

That automatically included politicians and government officials, as well as businessmen, educators, lawyers, scientists, journalists. The definition ruled out many Americans who are truly outstanding in their fields but who really belong in another category. They exemplify what John Gardner describes as "virtuoso leadership"—the diva, the poet or novelist, painter or actor. They may be a fresh inspiration and their audiences may be vast, but they are basically soloists, and we felt that they should be included only if their work had a clear, direct impact on society.

In some cases, our choice was based on considerable accomplishments; in others, it rested more on promise. We were not looking for greatness, but for men and women capable of leadership in many ways and many spheres. To create our portfolio, TIME correspondents last April began gathering recommendations from university presidents and professors, Congressmen, church figures, industrialists. The editors trimmed, amended, sifted and resifted the lengthy list that resulted. What follows is not —and was not intended to be—a reflection of the geographic, political, racial or sexual makeup of America. But some characteristics of our gallery deserve special note.

There are an encouraging number of mayors and Governors, which may be a sign of increasing vigor on the local level. Less encouraging is the fact that there are not more women and blacks. Were a list to be compiled in 1980, say, their numbers would surely be greater; just now their presence in leadership positions is still limited.

There would undoubtedly have been more businessmen had our age limit been higher. André Malraux, that archetypal homme engage, once noted that America's "sense of civism" was among its most striking features, especially in the private sector. Yet at 45 most financial and industrial whiz kids are still preoccupied with climbing corporate ladders, and their deepest involvement in

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