Cecilia Munoz, Quarterback of Obama’s Immigration Reform Efforts

Her friends wondered why she didn’t quit when President Obama failed to push immigration reform in his first term, and now they’re wondering if Cecilia Muñoz, the president’s point person on immigration, has the political muscle to move bipartisan legislation to fix the broken system across a finish line blocked by House Republicans. An activist with the National Council of La Raza before joining the White House in 2009, Muñoz, who turns 51 on Saturday, got roughed up pretty badly in her community when she defended Obama’s crackdown on illegal immigrants, which resulted in a record number of deportations. Her friends are convinced she wouldn’t have signed on for a second term unless she had Obama’s unqualified backing and commitment.