Report Card: Last Year's List

Barack Obama: President of the United States

Why We Picked Him: He'd decided to bail out auto giants GM and Chrysler--forcing them to make major institutional changes in the process.

Report Card: GM's changes have reaped rewards: the company has repaid an $8.2 billion U.S. and Canadian government loan and posted profits for two quarters. In August, it filed for an initial public offering, in which the Treasury Department plans to sell around 20% of its stake. Chrysler has been taking losses overall in 2010 due to payments on its government loans, but--after selling a stake to Fiat, shuttering dealerships, reducing incentives to buyers, and beginning an overhaul of all its brands--its automotive production is once again profitable.

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Sarah Nathan is a story researcher for The Atlantic.

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