It shouldn't come as a surprise that in a presidential election year, leadership would be a paramount concern of the nation. Although companies and executives are obviously invested in which candidate wins the presidency, they have another reason to be thinking about leadership. While everyone still conjures up the names of Enron Corp. and WorldCom Inc. when discussing scandals that have tarnished the image of Corporate America, the fact of the matter is that barely a week goes by without another corporation being cited in the press for potential regulatory problems. Needless to say, this is a sad commentary, and while it is clear that Sarbanes-Oxley has created untold work and expense, it should also be evident that some form of tighter controls was long overdue. But no amount of regulation can create the kind of enlightened leadership that helps companies avoid pitfalls in the first place. That's why when I read about the accomplishments of our 40 executives under the age of 40, I take some solace that this new generation of business leaders can help give global business a face-lift over the next decades.

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