Jenna Jameson

Jenna Jameson
(about this pic)
Jenna Jameson (born Jenna Marie Massoli; April 9, 1974) is an American entrepreneur, webcam model and former pornographic film actress, who has been called the world's most famous adult-entertainment performer and "The Queen of Porn". She started acting in erotic videos in 1993 after having worked as a stripper and glamor model. By 1996, she had won the "top newcomer" award from each of the three major adult-movie organizations. She has since won more than 20 adult-video awards, and has been inducted into the X-Rated Critics Organization (XRCO) and Adult Video News (AVN) Halls of Fame.
Jameson founded the adult-entertainment company ClubJenna in 2000 with Jay Grdina, whom she later married and divorced. Initially a single website, this business expanded into managing similar websites of other stars and began producing sexually explicit videos in 2001. The first such movie, Briana Loves Jenna (with Briana Banks), was named at the 2003 AVN Awards as the best-selling and best-renting pornographic title for 2002. By 2005, ClubJenna had revenues of US$30 million with profits estimated at half that. Advertisements for her site and films, often bearing her picture, have towered on a 48-foot-tall billboard in New York City's Times Square.
Jameson has also crossed over into mainstream pop culture, starting with a minor role in Howard Stern's 1997 film Private Parts.[8] Her mainstream appearances continued with several guest-hosting and guest-starring on various television programs. Playboy TV hosted her Jenna's American Sex Star reality show, in which aspiring porn stars competed for a ClubJenna contract. Her 2004 autobiography, How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale, spent six weeks on The New York Times Best Seller list.
Jameson announced her retirement from pornography at the 2008 AVN Awards, stating that she would never return to the industry. Although she no longer performs in pornographic films, she has been working as a webcam model since 2013.






Robert De Niro

De Niro at the 2011
Tribeca Film Festival
(about this pic)
Robert De Niro (/dəˈnɪroʊ/; born August 17, 1943) is an American actor, director, producer, and voice actor. His first major film roles were in Bang the Drum Slowly and Mean Streets, both in 1973. Then in 1974, after not receiving the role of Michael Corleone in The Godfather, he was cast as the young Vito Corleone in The Godfather Part II, a role for which he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. 
His longtime collaboration with director Martin Scorsese began with Mean Streets, and later earned De Niro an Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Jake LaMotta in the 1980 film Raging Bull. He earned nominations for Taxi Driver in 1976 and Cape Fear in 1991. De Niro received additional Academy Award nominations for Michael Cimino's The Deer Hunter (1978), Penny Marshall's Awakenings (1990), and David O. Russell's Silver Linings Playbook (2012). His portrayal of gangster Jimmy Conway in Scorsese's Goodfellas earned him a BAFTA nomination in 1990.
De Niro has earned four nominations for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, for his work in New York, New York (1977), Midnight Run (1988), Analyze This (1999), and Meet the Parents (2000). He has also simultaneously directed and starred in films such as 1993's A Bronx Tale and 2006's The Good Shepherd. De Niro has received accolades for his career, including the AFI Life Achievement Award (2003) and the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award (2010). De Niro has starred in over ninety films throughout his career.

Michael Jordan

Micheal Jordan in 2006
(about this pic)
Michael Jeffrey Jordan (born February 17, 1963), also known by his initials, MJ, is an American former professional basketball player, entrepreneur, and majority owner and chairman of the Charlotte Bobcats. His biography on the National Basketball Association (NBA) website states, "By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time." Jordan was one of the most effectively marketed athletes of his generation and was considered instrumental in popularizing the NBA around the world in the 1980s and 1990s.

After a three-season career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a member of the Tar Heels' national championship team in 1982, Jordan joined the NBA's Chicago Bulls in 1984. He quickly emerged as a league star, entertaining crowds with his prolific scoring. His leaping ability, illustrated by performing slam dunks from the free throw line in slam dunk contests, earned him the nicknames "Air Jordan" and "His Airness". He also gained a reputation for being one of the best defensive players in basketball. In 1991, he won his first NBA championship with the Bulls, and followed that achievement with titles in 1992 and 1993, securing a "three-peat". Although Jordan abruptly retired from basketball before the beginning of the 1993–94 NBA season to pursue a career in baseball, he rejoined the Bulls in 1995 and led them to three additional championships in 1996, 1997, and 1998, as well as an NBA-record 72 regular-season wins in the 1995–96 NBA season. Jordan retired for a second time in 1999, but returned for two more NBA seasons from 2001 to 2003 as a member of the Washington Wizards.

Jordan's individual accolades and accomplishments include five Most Valuable Player (MVP) Awards, ten All-NBA First Team designations, nine All-Defensive First Team honors, fourteen NBA All-Star Game appearances, three All-Star Game MVP Awards, ten scoring titles, three steals titles, six NBA Finals MVP Awards, and the 1988 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award. Among his numerous accomplishments, Jordan holds the NBA records for highest career regular season scoring average (30.12 points per game) and highest career playoff scoring average (33.45 points per game). In 1999, he was named the greatest North American athlete of the 20th century by ESPN, and was second to Babe Ruth on the Associated Press's list of athletes of the century. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009.

Jordan is also known for his product endorsements. He fueled the success of Nike's Air Jordan sneakers, which were introduced in 1985 and remain popular today. Jordan also starred in the 1996 feature film Space Jam as himself. He is the majority owner and head of basketball operations for the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats, having won a bidding war to buy controlling interest in the team from founding owner Robert L. Johnson.

Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin in 1854 (maybe)
(about this pic)

Charles Robert Darwin, FRS (12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was an English naturalist and geologist, best known for his contributions to evolutionary theory. He established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors, and in a joint publication with Alfred Russel Wallace introduced his scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection, in which the struggle for existence has a similar effect to the artificial selection involved in selective breeding.
Darwin published his theory of evolution with compelling evidence in his 1859 book On the Origin of Species, overcoming scientific rejection of earlier concepts of transmutation of species. By the 1870s the scientific community and much of the general public had accepted evolution as a fact. However, many favoured competing explanations and it was not until the emergence of the modern evolutionary synthesis from the 1930s to the 1950s that a broad consensus developed in which natural selection was the basic mechanism of evolution. In modified form, Darwin's scientific discovery is the unifying theory of the life sciences, explaining the diversity of life.
Darwin's early interest in nature led him to neglect his medical education at the University of Edinburgh; instead, he helped to investigate marine invertebrates. Studies at the University of Cambridge encouraged his passion for natural science. His five-year voyage on HMS Beagle established him as an eminent geologist whose observations and theories supported Charles Lyell's uniformitarian ideas, and publication of his journal of the voyage made him famous as a popular author.
Puzzled by the geographical distribution of wildlife and fossils he collected on the voyage, Darwin began detailed investigations and in 1838 conceived his theory of natural selection. Although he discussed his ideas with several naturalists, he needed time for extensive research and his geological work had priority. He was writing up his theory in 1858 when Alfred Russel Wallace sent him an essay which described the same idea, prompting immediate joint publication of both of their theories. Darwin's work established evolutionary descent with modification as the dominant scientific explanation of diversification in nature. In 1871 he examined human evolution and sexual selection in The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, followed by The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals. His research on plants was published in a series of books, and in his final book, he examined earthworms and their effect on soil.
In recognition of Darwin's pre-eminence as a scientist, he was honoured with a major ceremonial funeral and buried in Westminster Abbey, close to John Herschel and Isaac Newton. Darwin has been described as one of the most influential figures in human history.

Steve Jobs

Jobs holding an iPhone 4 at
Worldwide Developers Conference 2010
(about this pic)

Steven Paul "Steve" Jobs (/ˈdʒɒbz/; February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American entrepreneur, marketer, and inventor, who was the co-founder (along with Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne), chairman, and CEO of Apple Inc. Through Apple, he is widely recognized as a charismatic pioneer of the personal computer revolution and for his influential career in the computer and consumer electronics fields, transforming "one industry after another, from computers and smartphones to music and movies". Jobs also co-founded and served as chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios; he became a member of the board of directors of The Walt Disney Company in 2006, when Disney acquired Pixar. Jobs was among the first to see the commercial potential of Xerox PARC's mouse-driven graphical user interface, which led to the creation of the Apple Lisa and, one year later, the Macintosh. He also played a role in introducing the LaserWriter, one of the first widely available laser printers, to the market.

After a power struggle with the board of directors in 1985, Jobs left Apple and founded NeXT, a computer platform development company specializing in the higher-education and business markets. In 1986, he acquired the computer graphics division of Lucasfilm, which was spun off as Pixar. He was credited in Toy Story (1995) as an executive producer. He served as CEO and majority shareholder until Disney's purchase of Pixar in 2006. In 1996, after Apple had failed to deliver its operating system, Copland, Gil Amelio turned to NeXT Computer, and the NeXTSTEP platform became the foundation for the Mac OS X. Jobs returned to Apple as an advisor, and took control of the company as an interim CEO. Jobs brought Apple from near bankruptcy to profitability by 1998.

As the new CEO of the company, Jobs oversaw the development of the iMac, iTunes, iPod, iPhone, and iPad, and on the services side, the company's Apple Retail Stores, iTunes Store and the App Store. The success of these products and services provided several years of stable financial returns, and propelled Apple to become the world's most valuable publicly traded company in 2011. The reinvigoration of the company is regarded by many commentators as one of the greatest turnarounds in business history.

In 2003, Jobs was diagnosed with a pancreas neuroendocrine tumor. Though it was initially treated, he reported a hormone imbalance, underwent a liver transplant in 2009, and appeared progressively thinner as his health declined. On medical leave for most of 2011, Jobs resigned in August that year, and was elected Chairman of the Board. He died of respiratory arrest related to his tumor on October 5, 2011.

Jobs received a number of honors and public recognition for his influence in the technology and music industries. He has been referred to as "legendary", a "futurist" or simply "visionary", and has been described as the "Father of the Digital Revolution", a "master of innovation", "the master evangelist of the digital age" and a "design perfectionist".

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga in 2012
(about this pic)
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (/ˈstɛfəniː dʒərməˈnɒtə/ STE-fə-nee jər-mə-NOT-ə; born March 28, 1986), better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American recording artist, activist, record producer, businesswoman, fashion designer, philanthropist, and actress. Born and raised in New York City, where she lives, Gaga primarily studied at the Convent of the Sacred Heart and briefly attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts before withdrawing to focus on her musical career. She soon began performing in the rock music scene of Manhattan's Lower East Side. By the end of 2007, record executive and producer Vincent Herbert signed her to his label Streamline Records, an imprint of Interscope Records. Initially working as a songwriter at Interscope Records, her vocal abilities captured the attention of recording artist Akon, who also signed her to Kon Live Distribution, his own label under Interscope.

Gaga rose to prominence with her August 2008 debut album, The Fame, which was a critical and commercial success. The record included the international number-one tracks "Just Dance" and "Poker Face". In November 2009, her extended play, The Fame Monster, was released to a similar reception, and produced the hit singles "Bad Romance", "Telephone", and "Alejandro". Its accompanying Monster Ball Tour became one of the highest-grossing concert tours of all time. Gaga's second album, Born This Way, was released in May 2011 and topped albums charts in most major markets. It generated chart-topping songs "Born This Way", "Judas", and "The Edge of Glory". Her third album, Artpop, was released in November 2013. It was preceded by singles "Applause" and "Do What U Want".

Influenced by David Bowie, Michael Jackson, Madonna, and Queen, Gaga is recognized for her flamboyant, diverse, and outré contributions to the music industry through her fashion, performances, and music videos. As of November 2013, she had sold an estimated 24 million albums and 125 million singles worldwide and her singles are some of the best-selling worldwide. Her achievements include five Grammy Awards and 13 MTV Video Music Awards. Gaga has consecutively appeared on Billboard magazine's Artists of the Year (scoring the definitive title in 2010), ranked fourth in VH1's list of 100 Greatest Women in Music, is the fourth best selling digital singles artist in US according to RIAA, is regularly placed on lists composed by Forbes magazine, including The World's 100 Most Powerful Women from 2010 to 2013, and was named one of the most influential people in the world by Time magazine. Outside of her musical career, she is a prominent LGBT activist.

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela in 2008
(about this pic)
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (/mænˈdɛlə/; Xhosa pronunciation: [xoˈliːɬaɬa manˈdeːla]; 18 July 1918 – 5 December 2013) was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician, and philanthropist who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. He was South Africa's first black chief executive, and the first elected in a fully representative democratic election. His government focused on dismantling the legacy of apartheid through tackling institutionalised racism, poverty and inequality, and fostering racial reconciliation. Politically an African nationalist and democratic socialist, he served as President of the African National Congress (ANC) from 1991 to 1997. Internationally, Mandela was Secretary General of the Non-Aligned Movement from 1998 to 1999.

A Xhosa born to the Thembu royal family, Mandela attended the Fort Hare University and the University of Witwatersrand, where he studied law. Living in Johannesburg, he became involved in anti-colonial politics, joining the ANC and becoming a founding member of its Youth League. After the South African National Party came to power in 1948, he rose to prominence in the ANC's 1952 Defiance Campaign, was appointed superintendent of the organisation's Transvaal chapter and presided over the 1955 Congress of the People. Working as a lawyer, he was repeatedly arrested for seditious activities and, with the ANC leadership, was unsuccessfully prosecuted in the Treason Trial from 1956 to 1961. Influenced by Marxism, he secretly joined the South African Communist Party (SACP) and sat on its Central Committee. Although initially committed to non-violent protest, in association with the SACP he co-founded the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) in 1961, leading a sabotage campaign against the apartheid government. In 1962, he was arrested, convicted of conspiracy to overthrow the state, and sentenced to life imprisonment in the Rivonia Trial.

Mandela served over 27 years in prison, initially on Robben Island, and later in Pollsmoor Prison and Victor Verster Prison. An international campaign lobbied for his release. He was released in 1990, during a time of escalating civil strife. Mandela joined negotiations with President F. W. de Klerk to abolish apartheid and establish multiracial elections in 1994, in which he led the ANC to victory and became South Africa's first black president. He published his autobiography in 1995. During his tenure in the Government of National Unity he invited several other political parties to join the cabinet. As agreed to during the negotiations to end apartheid in South Africa, he promulgated a new constitution. He also created the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate past human rights abuses. While continuing the former government's liberal economic policy, his administration also introduced measures to encourage land reform, combat poverty, and expand healthcare services. Internationally, he acted as mediator between Libya and the United Kingdom in the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing trial, and oversaw military intervention in Lesotho. He declined to run for a second term, and was succeeded by his deputy, Thabo Mbeki. Mandela became an elder statesman, focusing on charitable work in combating poverty and HIV/AIDS through the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Mandela was a controversial figure for much of his life. Denounced as a communist terrorist by critics, he nevertheless gained international acclaim for his activism, having received more than 250 honours, including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize, the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Soviet Order of Lenin and the Bharat Ratna. He is held in deep respect within South Africa, where he is often referred to by his Xhosa clan name, Madiba, or as Tata ("Father"); he is often described as "the father of the nation".