Time magazine announced the 100 most influential people in the world Thursday, honoring the artists, icons, leaders, pioneers and titans who are “shaping the future.” And included in the very stacked “icon” category, is legendary drag queen and actor RuPaul. As someone who can walk a runway better than some supermodels (see his best RuPaul’s Drag Race catwalk moments here), it’s fitting that catwalk queen Naomi Campbell got the honor to pen the story about RuPaul.
She starts out recalling the first time she ever saw him — it was the ’90s in N.Y.C. “I wanted to know where he was going, because that was where I wanted to be,” she writes.
Campbell adds that his personality is even more beautiful than his appearance. “Ru was different. Not just because he had perfect, precise clothes and makeup, or because he was the only man I knew who could look that good in a wig and heels. There were no rough edges to be found,” she says. “But as I got to know him better, I got to experience firsthand his wit and his intelligence—he’s like an encyclopedia. And his beauty is far beyond skin-deep.”
She ends by talking about the influence of his hit show, RuPaul’s Drag Race, and what it means to contestants and fans. “It’s incredible what he’s done for the drag queens who compete on that show — bringing them out, introducing them to a mainstream audience and letting them be proud of who they are and what they want to be.”
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Curious which other fashion stars topped the list? Alessandro Michele, the creative director of Gucci, is honored in a piece written by Jared Leto (who loves any and all styles by the brand). Calvin Klein’s Raf Simons has a write-up from A$AP Rocky. And designer Ivanka Trump’s piece is penned by Wendi Murdoch.
What do you think of this year’s honorees?