Tom FordTom Ford writes: “Although power is often subjective and defies a ready definition, we determined that to earn a spot on our Power 50 list, candidates have to be gay and American or working primarily in the United States (sorry, Elton) and have significance in our culture at large. To work out each person’s power ranking, we used a weighted system of criteria, awarding scores based on (1) political clout; (2) pop-culture resonance; (3) individual wealth; and (4) current personal profile. Whether they’re raking in millions, advancing the gay rights movement, entertaining us with snarky celebrity gossip, or selling us $2,000 cashmere sweaters, we’re confident that these VIPs have exerted considerable sway over how we think, look, and act.”