['07 rank - #1]
As head of the world's largest independent PR firm, Richard Edelman has established himself as a leader of both thoughts and action. If any major communications issue arises, his comments are among the first sought - a position of visibility with which he is comfortable. Whether it is taking on industry critics, breaking down Wall Street's communications failures, or providing recaps of his high-level meetings, Edelman has made the most of his blogging. Always the innovator, he had a key role in the 2008 launch of Edelman Studios, a new unit that allows aspiring filmmakers to pitch and develop creative content for clients. From a business standpoint, his lead role at a firm with 2007 global revenue of $402.6 million, up 22.7% from the previous year, warrants his place atop this list. Throughout the years, he steadfastly has retained his firm's independence. Whether looking at the man or his agency, the name Edelman continues to provide a model for all in the industry to follow.