Speed Reads

person of the year

Donald Trump, Simone Biles lead the short list for Time's Person of the Year

Time magazine has announced the finalists for its 2016 Person of the Year, and the short list includes a 19-year-old gymnast, a group of whistleblowers, a Super Bowl halftime performer, and a handful of politicians.

Time annually aims to select the person or idea that has had the greatest impact on the news and world in the past year, a tradition it has followed since 1927. This year, the magazine's 11 finalists are made up of Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles; Hillary Clinton; President-elect Donald Trump; Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan; U.K. Independence Party head Nigel Farage; Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi; Russian President Vladimir Putin; Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg; the whistleblowers about the water crisis in Flint, Michigan; musician Beyoncé Knowles; and the CRISPR scientists, who developed technology that can edit DNA.

If Putin were to win the 2016 Person of the Year — for what Time describes as "[making] headlines … with his country's intervention in Syria and evidence showing that Russian operatives were responsible for the hack of Democratic National Committee servers" — it would be his second time with the designation, after being named Person of the Year in 2007. German Chancellor Angela Merkel was Time's Person of the Year in 2015 due to her leadership in the Syrian refugee crisis and the Europe debt crisis; Ebola fighters were the 2014 "person" of the year.

The 2016 Person of the Year will be announced Wednesday morning on the Today show and on Time's website. Learn more about the finalists and the justification for why they are nominated here.