Sunday, Dec. 19, 2004

Martha Stewart

The diva of domesticity has always made a "good thing" out of practically anything, and her legal ordeal has been no exception. Although she started 2004 facing the prospect of years in prison and her business (and reputation) in tatters, she ended it serving a modest five-month sentence for lying to federal investigators — with a new TV show and a lucrative five-year employment contract awaiting her on release. The fact that her company's stock has more than doubled since her conviction makes the prospective comeback even sweeter.