Barack Obama, who took the top spot for the third year in a row, was more than four times as popular as George W. Bush, who was in second place just ahead of fellow former president Bill Clinton, a Gallup poll released Monday revealed.
South African statesman Nelson Mandela was the fourth-most admired man, followed by Microsoft's Bill Gates in fifth place.
Catholic Pope Benedict XVI, evangelist Billy Graham, former president Jimmy Carter, conservative TV commentator Glenn Beck and the Dalai Lama, the Buddhist spiritual leader, rounded out the Top 10.
"It's all about power," Richard Slotkin, professor emeritus of American studies at Wesleyan University in Connecticut, told USA Today. "When we think of importance, we think politically, that's really clear -- with religion a close second, though Bill Gates beats out Pope Benedict. It's almost like a register of power."
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was the Most Admired Woman of 2010, earning the former first lady 15 No. 1 rankings since her initial appearance on the list in 1992.
Like last year, she was followed by politician Sarah Palin, entertainment executive Oprah Winfrey, first lady Michelle Obama, former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice and British Queen Elizabeth.
No scientists, Supreme Court justices, senators, congressmen or athletes made the Top 10, USA Today reported.
Results for this USA Today/Gallup poll were based on telephone interviews conducted Dec. 10-12, with a random sample of 1,019 adults, age 18 and older, living in the continental United States, selected using random-digit-dial sampling.
The maximum margin of sampling error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.