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We saw some extraordinary stories in 2012. Some from people we hate, some from people we love. Some made millions as they conquered feats that some thought couldn’t be done while others made history through heroic actions.

12. Anonymous

“Anonymous,” as they like to call themselves, had the world on edge and many were clueless.  The group of hackers threatened one of the world’s biggest web hosts, GoDaddy, and even took down the Justice Department website right after they shut down Megaupload. They have been silent for awhile but the Anonymous group is sure to do more damage in 2013.

11. Terry Richardson

The name might not ring any bells, but the man has taken pictures of all of your favorite industry ladies and some of your favorite rappers  Everyone from Kate Upton and Rihanna to rap group Odd Future. At the top of 2012, Richardson released a photo book with Lady Gaga documenting her world tour. Expect to see more from this guy in 2013.

10. Tim Tebow

He’s the man everyone loves to hate. Tim Tebow made himself a household name in the 2011 NFL season by carrying his then team the Denver Broncos, to the playoffs with a remarkable run in the regular season.  Known for his strong Christian beliefs, Tebow would always pray before games and after touchdowns. The ritual turned into the national phenomenon we know today as “Tebowing”. Tebow got so big that even Robert Downey Jr. did the ritual at the Oscars. He got the rights and trademark to “Tebowing,” so now its going to cost you if you do the pose.

9. Oscar Pistorius

Known as the “Blade Runner,” Oscar Pistorius became the first double amputee to compete in the Olympics.  Many dream to reach it to the Olympics, but with the odds stacked against him Pistorius made the impossible possible. He almost made it out with a medal before losing in the finals. Oscar showed us that dreams can come true, and that we have no excuses!

8. Tim Cook

Being appointed the CEO of the worlds most recognizable brand, Cook kept the bucks coming in 2012 with Apple. Releasing a slew of new devices, Tim has given has Apple faithfuls what they wanted with both marquee devices — the new iPad and the iPad mini. Cook looks to conquer more with Apple radio in 2013.

7. Usain Bolt

Bolt defied all odds this summer when he was actually the underdog  in both the 100 and 200 meter race against countryman Yohan Blake. To everyones surprise, he blew the competition away and even broke his own world record. The feat even had former Olympic sprinter Carl Lewis hating. Once again Usain Bolt showed us why he was crowned the world’s fastest man in 2008 and again in 2012.

6. Riccardo Tisci

Meet Riccardo Tisci, the man that turned all of your favorite rappers into Givenchy groupies.  The brand has been spotted on everyone from fashion savvy rappers Kanye West and A$AP Rocky to trapstars Rick Ross and 2 Chainz. Tisci took over the brand in 2004 and has transformed it into a powerhouse in both worlds of high end fashion and streetwear.  The fashion house became a staple in hip hop circles with Riccardi’s Rottweiler-prints tees.  The brand will only gain more buzz with the rumored collabo with retail giant H&M in 2013.

5. Jeremy Lin

He became a national star on Feb. 4 when he played against the Nets and he lit up All Star point guard Deron Williams with 25 points and leading the Knicks to a winning streak. Wins over Kobe’s Lakers and game winning shots against the Raptors gave him instant fame and “Lin-sanity” ensued. Since his breakout moments Lin has since scored his own ice cream with Ben & Jerry’s, endorsement deals with Volvo and Nike, and hustled a lucrative NBA contract with the Houston Rockets all within six months of his first NBA start.

4. Dr. Dre

As we sit patiently waiting for the long awaited Detox album, Dr. Dre was listed by Forbes as the highest paid musician in 2012. He pulled in $110 million with his Beats By Dre headphones, a collabo with Monster.  The good Doc hasn’t released a new album in over a decade but has found other ways to rake in the dough. Partnering with HTC and pushing out more Beats accessories I’m sure Dre has no plans on releasing that Detox any time soon. Clearly Dre has moved on… Maybe we should too.

3. Kevin Systrom & Michael Krieger

While Facebook is still king of the social networks, I’m sure the media giant was little worried about the little start up known as Instagram which was started in 2010. Instagram is the brainchild of Kevin Systrom & Michael Krieger. They started it with seed money they received, approx somewhere between $500K and $600K. By April 2012, the company was worth $500 million within the first year and half. After being valued at $500 million, Facebook saw the startup’s potential and decided to partner up with the company which then valued the company at $1 Billion. They giving a new whole new meaning to “cashing out.”

2. Lebron James

LBJ had a year every athlete would envy. He added trophy after trophy ever growing case of awards. Winning both the regular season and NBA Finals MVP honors, winning a NBA championship and winning gold at this year’s summer Olympics. It’s only a feat only achieved by the great one, Michael Jordan.

1. Barack Obama

The first black President was re-elected President. Do we need to say anymore?

What did you do this year?

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12 People That Had An Awesome 2012  was originally published on giantlife.com