9 Leaders on the 2022 TIME100 Share What Gives Them Hope

3 minute read

It might feel difficult to muster up visions of an optimistic future as the world endures another year marked by crises—from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to the continuation of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Yet through the work they have done and the change they have made, many of the leaders on this year’s TIME100, our annual list highlighting the world’s most influential people, have reminded us that there are plenty of places to find hope. Whether it’s in the cultural works that bring us joy, like Quinta Brunson’s Abbott Elementary, a standout television series that chronicles the ups and downs of life in a Philadelphia public school, or in landmark achievements that herald a more equitable future, as Ketanji Brown Jackson prepares to take her seat as the first Black woman on the U.S. Supreme Court, the members of this year’s TIME100 have found ways to foster optimism. We asked nine of them: What gives you hope for the future?

Jeremy Strong, actor

Taylor Hill—Getty Images

“Students and the way they look at the world … their empathy and aliveness to one another’s struggles.”

Read More: Jeremy Strong Is on the 2022 TIME100

Ketanji Brown Jackson, incoming U.S. Supreme Court Justice

Eric Lee—Bloomberg/Getty Images

“Young people are my hope for the future. I see their passion, ingenuity, empathy, engagement.”

Read More: Ketanji Brown Jackson Is on the 2022 TIME100

Derrick Palmer, Amazon Labor Union organizer

Terrance Purdy, Jr. for TIME

“That my voice is inspiring a whole country of workers to let their voice be heard as well as to demand more benefits, pay, and job protection from their employer.”

Read More: Chris Smalls and Derrick Palmer Are on the 2022 TIME100

Quinta Brunson, television creator and actor

Dia Dipasupil—Getty Images

“I hope we can get it together enough as an entire planet to beat the environmental crisis we’re in.”

Read More: Quinta Brunson Is on the 2022 TIME100

Nan Goldin, visual artist and advocate

Claudio Lavenia—Getty Images for Fondazione Prada

“The kids.”

Read More: Nan Goldin Is on the 2022 TIME100

Emmett Schelling, Transgender Education Network of Texas Executive Director

Amy E. Price—Getty Images for SXSW

“I’m so proud of my community and the deep grass­roots work being done by so many other Black and trans people of color-led orgs.”

Read More: Emmett Schelling Is on the 2022 TIME100

Chris Smalls, Amazon Labor Union organizer

Michael Nagle—Bloomberg/Getty Images

“Changing how unions are viewed and making it cool to organize.”

Read More: Chris Smalls and Derrick Palmer Are on the 2022 TIME100

Gregory L. Robinson, James Webb Space Telescope Program Director

Chris Gunn—NASA

“Organizations are trying to implement more organic approaches to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, leaning forward in the future of work, and encouraging and adopting more innovation in organizations, products, services, and processes.”

Read More: Gregory L. Robinson Is on the 2022 TIME100

Eileen Gu, Olympic champion

Mike Coppola—Getty Images

“Open-minded young people. Only through curiosity, willingness to learn, and kindness can we bridge divides and achieve multicultural understanding.”

Read More: Eileen Gu Is on the 2022 TIME100

See the full 2022 TIME100 list.

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Write to Simmone Shah at simmone.shah@time.com and Nadia Suleman at nadia.suleman@time.com