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The first lady during the first 100 days has just been marvelous; she has helped to give America a new sense of hope. They’ve been a people’s family; they displayed a sense of caring and a sense of sharing and getting other people in America to look out for each other. But more than giving America a sense of hope, she has helped give the people of the world a new sense of hope. She has inspired thousands and millions of women in America and around the world, and our standing in the world is much better because of the first lady and the president.

It’s truly an American family and yet a world family. The young president, the young wife and these two beautiful young children. So what else can you hope for?

—Rep. John Lewis, Democrat of Georgia

A Friendly Neighbor: Donna Brazile, Democratic strategist and CNN commentator

A-Plus: Congressman James Clyburn, Democrat of South Carolina, House Majority Whip

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21st Century Ambassador: Vishakha Desai, president, Asia Society

The Other Community Organizer: Lani Guinier, professor of law, Harvard University

Not About PR: Dorothy Height, chair and president emerita, National Council of Negro Women

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Black Love Guru: Cathy Hughes, CEO, Radio One

Working It Out: Julianne Malveaux, president, Bennett College for Women

Carrying Her Own Head: Susan L. Taylor, former editor, Essence

Rock Star: Baratunde Thurston, editor, The Onion

Gardener in Chief: Alice Waters, restaurant owner and activist

Covers the White House and Washington for The Root. Follow her on Twitter.