Celebs Americans Say They Trust: Test Your Reaction

Hillary Clinton (47%), politician, did well on the most trusted list.
Hillary Clinton (47%), politician, did well on the most trusted list. | Source
Tom Hanks, most trusted male, has a facial advantage.  Experts say wide-set eyes are non-threatening; A U-shaped mouth is trustworthy; so is an expression with a slight smile, eyebrows curved upward, softer jawlines and male faces with bigger chins.
Tom Hanks, most trusted male, has a facial advantage. Experts say wide-set eyes are non-threatening; A U-shaped mouth is trustworthy; so is an expression with a slight smile, eyebrows curved upward, softer jawlines and male faces with bigger chins. | Source

Who do you think is the least favorite actor on American television? Read on to see whether you guessed correctly.

Bear in mind that only a sample group of 1,009 Americans were polled in order to compile the list.

The research was a joint project of Reader’s Digest and the Wagner Group, a national research marketing company. The purpose was to provide an understanding of how trust instinct influences the American culture; to help determine which individuals Americans trust, and the ideals these individuals represent. The results were reported in the June 2013 magazine and online issues of Reader’s Digest.

Individuals were presented with a list of 200 people from 15 categories (listed below), and requested to rank them on a scale from 1 (not at all trustworthy) to 5 (most trustworthy). Qualities rated were:

  • Integrity and character
    Exceptional talent and drive for personal excellence
    Internal moral compass
    Message
    Honesty
    Leadership

Below are 10 facts gathered from the results of the poll. Test your reaction to the selection of people Americans trust. See how your opinions measure up to those of the sample individuals who influenced the list.

The only thing that should surprise us is that there are still some things that can surprise us.

— - Francois de La Rochefoucauld

What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (1) The three highest scorers for the people’s trust were individuals whom they knew personally, as against public figures.
Personal doctor (77%)
Personal spiritual adviser (71%)
Current child’s teacher (66%)

What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (2) TV doctors rated higher than doctors who are bestselling authors but do not host TV shows.

Dr. Memet Oz and Dr. Sunjay Gupta were among the highest scorers.

What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (3) Judge Judy (51%) scored higher than all other judges on the list, including all nine Supreme Court justices.

Robert Thompson, founder and director of Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture thinks it might have something to do with the fact that Judge Judy is so visible—seen everyday more than a Supreme Court Justice or the President.


What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (4) Tom Hanks (65%) scored highest among males.

Experts on the relationship between traits and trust think that his face shape gives him a biological advantage.


What's your reaction?

  • Surprise
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (5) Sandra Bullock (63%) scored highest among women.

People may have been influenced by the way she dealt with her cheating husband and her adoption of a child.


What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (6) Robin Roberts, cohost of Good Morning America is the most trusted woman on television.

Americans may have been inspired by her battle and recovery over myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS).


What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (7) Tom Cruise (27%) scored the least among male stars.

Joan Stewart, founder of Publicity Hound suggests three reasons that people do not consider Cruise trustworthy: his ties with the Church of Scientology, his criticism of Brooke Shields for using antidepressants and his jumping on Oprah’s couch.


What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not Surprised
See results without voting
  • (8) Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates made the top ten even though financial and business leaders categories ranked in the bottom third.

His generous contribution of more than $36 billion dollars to the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation is widely known. The foundation supports education and health initiatives, two issues which are dear to the heart of the American people.

What's your reaction?

  • Surprised
  • Not surprised
See results without voting
  • (9) Michelle Obama (53%) outscored all politicians on the list, including her husband.

Her reputation of fighting childhood obesity and advocating for military wives may have influenced the results.


What's your reaction?

  • Surprise
  • Not srprised
See results without voting
  • (10) The fifteen categories which were polled are listed here in the order they ranked from most to least trusted:
(i) Doctors
(ii) Teachers/Educators
(iii) Movie Stars
(iv) Philanthropists
(v) Spiritual leaders
(vi) Journalists
(vii) Filmmakers
(viii) Talk show hosts
(ix) Judges
(x) Professional sport stars
(xi) Business leaders
(xii) Financial experts
(xiii) National political leaders
(xiv) Political pundits
(xv) Influencers

Jeff Bezos (43%), founder and CEO of Amazon, one of the most trusted business leaders in America.  He beat out CEOs of Apple and Google.
Jeff Bezos (43%), founder and CEO of Amazon, one of the most trusted business leaders in America. He beat out CEOs of Apple and Google. | Source
Judge Judy (51%) scored highest of all judges on the list.
Judge Judy (51%) scored highest of all judges on the list. | Source

Ten Motivational Quotes from People Americans Trust

We may be surprised by the results of the poll but not that some of them offer great motivational messages.

  • Learning from our mistakes and holding on to our memories help us become deeper individuals with a better sense of who we are and how we choose to live our lives. - Ron Clark, founder, The Ron Clark Academy
  • Every moment wasted looking back, keeps us from moving forward. - Hillary Clinton, former secretary of state
  • The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settled for. - Maureen Dowd, columnist, New York Times
  • The essence of the American dream is the understanding that we are here on this earth and in this land for a higher purpose: to discover and develop to the fullest our God-given potential. Anything that stands in the way of the dream, we must fight. Anything that enhances the dream, we must support. – Steve Forbes, CEO, Forbes Media
  • I'm an optimist. I've read the last page of the Bible. – Billy Graham, evangelical minister
  • We're here for a reason. I believe a bit of the reason is to throw little torches out to lead people through the dark. – Whoopi Goldberg, actress
  • The case for freedom, the case for our constitutional principles the case for our heritage has to be made anew in each generation. The work of freedom is never done. - Anthony M. Kennedy, Supreme Court justice
  • A change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things. - Barack Obama, President of the United States
  • Don't ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own. – Michele Obama, First Lady USA
  • A less formal practice—and one that I follow—is to devote a few moments of my morning meditation session to feel and silently give thanks for all of the good things in my life. - Andrew Weil, MD, author of Spontaneous Healing


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32 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

Fascinating, really, and not a bit surprising. There is no way my votes would match those in this poll, but I've always known I was a bit different. LOL Thanks for a very interesting read.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Billybuc, thanks for reading and sharing your opinion. Glad you found it interesting.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

Wow, very interesting hub here MsDora! It is obvious, you put a lot of work into this hub. I am always fascinated in the unique topics on which you find to write.

Voted up +++ and sharing

God bless, Faith Reaper


dellea 3 years ago

This is a great hub, very interesting analysis of America today! I think that Tom Hanks should run for president and Sandra Bullock for vice president next time around, I'd vote for 'em. Thumbs up!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, Faith Reaper. This topic came when I read the June issue of Reader's Digest. I found it interesting too.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Dellea, I think you have to decide on another two candidates! (Smile). Thanks for your comment.


Blond Logic profile image

Blond Logic 3 years ago from Brazil

This was interesting. I was surprised about movie stars and film makers ranking so high. I wonder if they realize the responsibility that this carries.

I hadn't heard or read many of those quotes before. My favorite is the one by Michele Obama, it gave me goosebumps.

Nicely designed interactive hub. I'll share and pin.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

You're right Blond Logic, about the responsibilities that come with being someone Americans trust. Thanks for your input.


moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

I have to say I guess I'm not a trusting person because there is not one person in your list I would trust. My favorite quote by Judge Judy, "The minute your teenager's feet hit the floor in the morning they lie." I may not have the quote just right but you get the idea. Interesting hub voted up.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Moonlake, thanks for reading and commenting. Just a little bone to pick --

not my list (smile). I was not one of the 1,009 who were polled, but I got ya. Judge Judy can be controversial at times, still they picked her. I bet many are surprised!


Phyllis Doyle profile image

Phyllis Doyle 3 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

MsDora, this is a very interesting hub that I enjoyed reading. I was not surprised at all that Tom Hanks scored so high. Some of them I was a bit surprised, but, still I liked reading this. Great job.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Phyllis, I'm glad you found this hub interesting. Tom Hanks seems to be the real favorite. Good for him!


Ericdierker profile image

Ericdierker 3 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

Very cool hub. These truths are astonishing to me. Except the (1) category. Those would be my choices.

Except for one strange category missing --- spouses and parents. Hmmm.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Hi Eric. Parents and spouses are expected to be trustworthy, so perhaps that's why they were not put on the list. Thanks for your input.


manatita44 3 years ago

Good on Michelle and Bill Gates. Thanks Dora.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Manatita, I'm with you on those two. Hope all is well.


moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

I'm sorry I didn't mean your list I knew it wasn't your list. I knew it was a list from a poll. I used the wrong words.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Moonlake, please do not be sorry. I was kidding with you--like friends. Did you notice my (smile)? I know exactly what you meant. Please smile this time!


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

An interesting and informative outlook on the important people of America I learned something more here and you did it so well.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Thanks, DDE, for reading and leaving an encouraging comment.


FSlovenec profile image

FSlovenec 3 years ago from San Francisco, CA

Style and content are great..I enjoyed reading this and learned from it... Thank you


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 3 years ago from North Carolina

MsDora-Interesting AND fascinating hub here about trust. I was surprised that the poll did not include nurses. Usually nurses rank #1 even over doctors. :) Thanks-had fun with the polls.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Denise, I looked to see whether nurses could have been included in one of those groups; I'm shrugging my shoulders. Thank you for reading and commenting.


Romeos Quill profile image

Romeos Quill 3 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

A fascinating article MsDora....love Judge Judy, Bill Gates is a top bloke, and who wouldn't trust Tom Hanks after saving Private Ryan? :) Your motivational quotes were certainly that, and then some.

Thank you, clickety-click, and sharing.

Wishing you a peaceful evening in glorious St. Kitts.

Kindest Regards;

R.Q.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Romeos, thanks for your jolly comment. Glad you liked the article!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

FSlovenec, I missed your comment. You're very kind and I appreciate you!


Journey * profile image

Journey * 3 years ago from USA

Hi MsDora, thanks for sharing this interesting and informative hub with us. Voted interesting!

Best,

- Journey *


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Journey, you're welcome. Glad that you too, found it interesting. Thanks for your comment.


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 2 years ago from Dallas, Texas

Interesting findings about those we trust. TV Doctors? Wow. That is a surprise. Well, maybe not.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 years ago from The Caribbean Author

Peg, thanks for your comment. As the saying goes, "The only thing that should surprise us is that there are still some things that can surprise us."


Greensleeves Hubs profile image

Greensleeves Hubs 5 months ago from Essex, UK

Interesting poll, and I think actually quite heartening, though with reservations. Of course many of the names on the list are unfamiliar to me as a non-American, and yet none of the 10 results you present - except perhaps the last one - were at all surprising. As far as that last point is concerned, the suggestion that film stars for example are trusted above financial experts, journalists or judges seems strange, although it does depend on the kind of trust we are talking about - trust to be honest and nice? Or trust to govern, and analyse or make decisions competently?

However I can understand why a TV judge is favoured over a Supreme Court judge who I believe is a political appointee. What does give some encouragement to me is that celebrities are not necessarily trusted (or respected) just because of their fame - they need to be seen to be morally upright as well. And it is good when one looks at the complete list that people with a high social media presence on sites such as Twitter are not necessarily trusted just because they have a 'name'.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 5 months ago from The Caribbean Author

Alun, I share your views about the morality of some of these celebrities. I think that at the end of the day, people really know how to separate the good from the not so good. Thanks for your valuable feedback.

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    Dora Isaac Weithers (MsDora)946 Followers
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    MsDora, former teacher and Certified Christian Counselor explores attitudes and actions which can help us maintain our mental well-being.



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