#1 Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San SuuKyi
  • Myanmar
  • Politician and activist


The Iron Orchid, The Lady, Mother Suu; her Burmese nicknames reflect the reverence with which Aung San Suu Kyi is held in Myanmar. After decades of struggle against military rule, her non-violent fight for democracy and human rights in Myanmar has finally produced the country’s first democratic government with her National League for Democracy party in the parliamentary majority.

The 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner’s vision of a free Myanmar would have seemed a distant dream when she was placed under house arrest after the NLD victory in the 1990 Burmese general election. A true freedom fighter and an icon of peaceful resistance, Aung San Suu Kyi has endured hunger strikes and years of incarceration for her country, even sacrificing visiting her dying husband in England in order to ensure she would not be exiled. In January 2016, thousands took to the streets of Rangoon to celebrate her new victory, and this time the outgoing regime has pledged to support the new government.