Women Who Rule
Photo Credit: I. Sanogo/AFP/Getty Image
THE PRODIGAL DAUGHTER: Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, 67 president of Liberia; elected November 8, 2005
STICKING TO HER GUNS: Born and raised in war-torn Liberia, Johnson-Sirleaf received a graduate degree in economics from Harvard, then returned home, determined to fight her countrys violence and poverty. Jailed twice, she narrowly escaped a rape attempt by a soldier who had executed her cellmates.
STICKING POINT: Her association with Charles Taylor, Liberias ex-president, now awaiting trial for war crimes. She helped fund his rebel faction before breaking ties.
CAMPAIGN PLEDGES: Tougher sentences for rape, which was used as a weapon during the countrys civil war; clamping down on corruption; and shedding light: Monrovia, Liberias capital city, had been without a government-supplied power source since the early 1990s, due to the civil war. Some power was restored in July.
SIGNATURE STYLE: Indigenous chic. Wore a gold-embroidered national costume and matching head scarf on her first official visit to Washington.
WHO WOULD PLAY HER IN THE MOVIE: Whoopi Goldberg