Elon Musk Named Time's Person of the Year for 2021

Time editor in chief and CEO Edward Felsenthal says ”few individuals have had ore influence than Musk“

Elon Musk (Getty Images)

Elon Musk was named Time Person of the Year on Monday.

In a statement on the annual award, Time editor in chief and CEO Edward Felsenthal wrote that the honor “is a marker of influence, and few individuals have had more influence than Musk on life on Earth, and potentially life off Earth too. In 2021, Musk emerged not just as the world’s richest person but also as perhaps the richest example of a massive shift in our society.”

The cover story dedicated to Musk pointed out that he is the CEO of Tesla, an electric vehicle company, and SpaceX, a space flight company. His tweets regularly dictate the price of cryptocurrency and he has been selling off his fortune recently, though he remains the world’s richest man.

Time’s Molly Ball, Jeffrey Kluger and Alejandro de la Garza wrote the story, which said, “How many will leave a mark on the world—much less the universe—for their contributions rather than their crimes? A few short years ago, Musk was roundly mocked as a crazy con artist on the verge of going broke. Now this shy South African with Asperger’s syndrome, who escaped a brutal childhood and overcame personal tragedy, bends governments and industry to the force of his ambition. To Musk, his vast fortune is a mere side effect of his ability not just to see but to do things others cannot, in arenas where the stakes are existential.”

In an interview for the honor, Musk was open about his plans for SpaceX and Tesla, his “semi-separated” relationship with musician Gimes and his opinion of President Joe Biden. The president, he said, isn’t doing “an amazing job,” but then again, “it’s hard to tell.”

The Heroes of the Year are vaccine scientists and the Entertainer of the Year is singer and songwriter Olivia Rodrigo.

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