Greta Thunberg Named Time’s Person Of The Year

By Ben Hamill - December 27 2019

greta thunberg

In only a few months, Greta Thunberg went from striking from school to raise climate change awareness in Stockholm, Sweden, to a household name. Now, the 16-year-old climate change activist has been named as Time Magazine’s Person of the Year.

Thunberg is the youngest person ever to have been honoured in this way by the prestigious magazine. According to editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal, who made the announcement on the Today show on NBC, Thunberg’s voice was the loudest when it comes to the issue of climate change.

Felsenthal went on to describe the girl, who was nominated for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize, as leading a worldwide movement after seemingly coming out of nowhere. Furthermore, he said that Thunberg symbolised a generational shift that has seen growing numbers of young people demand serious change around the world.

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Beating World Leaders

Given the five finalists named by Time, Thunberg was up against some stiff competition. One of them was none other than the recipient of what the Internet christened ‘the Death Glare’; namely, US president Donald Trump.

Other finalists that lost the Person of the Year title to the teenager include the whistle-blower who complained about Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president, Hong Kong’s anti-government protesters, and US speaker of the house, Nancy Pelosi.

Thunberg took to Instagram to comment on being honoured by Time. She told her more than 8 million followers that she could not believe the good news. The young activist then added that she shared the honour with climate activists around the world, and especially with those who participated in the #FridaysForFuture movement.

Time Honours Others

Thunberg was not the only person to be honoured by Time. The magazine also created covers for other achievers instead of its usual practise of announcing runners-up.

US singer Lizzo was named as the Entertainer of the Year, while the US women’s soccer team was named Athletes of the Year. Bob Iger, CEO of Disney, was named as the magazine’s Businessperson of the Year.

Time also created a new category in 2019. The Guardians of the Year title went to the federal workers who testified in Trump’s impeachment inquiry.

Who Is Greta?

Born on 3 January 2003 in Stockholm, Greta Tintin Eleonora Ernman Thunberg shot to fame in August 2018. She was photographed outside the Swedish parliament with a pink satchel and a hand-painted sign that bore the simple slogan, School Strike For Climate.

Thunberg’s call to action inspired other teenagers and children, as well as adults, and within a few months, the girl addressed world leaders at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Since then, Thunberg has continued to call out leaders for inaction, and she has continued to inspire people to not only protest against climate change, but also to adopt earth-friendly lifestyle choices.

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