Your first thought may be – can INTJs even be famous people? For a personality type that is often better off out of the spotlight, it is quite rare. But there are many INTJs who have ended up in the spotlight, usually without intending it.
If you were to describe INTJs in 10 (adjectives) words, it would be these:
INTJs are the second rarest of the 16 Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality types, accounting for a little under 2% of the world’s population. This type is often referred to as “The Architect”, “The Strategist”, or “The Mastermind” because of their high creativity and intelligence. They love problem-solving and can strategically plan far into the future.
If you’re reading this, you are likely an INTJ or someone getting to know one. This list compiles 110 INTJ famous people from across politics, business, entertainment, and other areas, for you to relate with.
This is an opinion piece and is motivated by multiple contributors and sources. Obviously, there were no formal tests done to check the personality types of these famous people. The typing is based largely on consensus.
Entrepreneurship generally comes down to two things. Finding a large problem or need at hand and then creating a product or service that solves that problem. Often times, these “problems” are not directly apparent. No one thought we needed a “Facebook” to socially connect us, yet the need was created by its founder and then solved through the Facebook platform.
INTJs are usually veterans at anything that requires problem-solving. They can identify problems, brainstorm solutions, and then execute the solution with a master plan. This is what makes them very good entrepreneurs. That said, success in entrepreneurship is multi-faceted and requires a diverse set of abilities in maintaining social contracts and networks of people. INTJs may struggle with the social aspect of things first, but they usually recognize this and end up overcoming it in order to achieve their goals. While a corporate environment may bore INTJs, they find the challenge of entrepreneurship attractive.
This man needs no introduction. CEO and Founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg is a textbook INTJ.
Elon Musk is an engineer, entrepreneur, designer, and philanthropist known for his out-of-this-world ideas. The scary part is he proves everyone wrong by turning seemingly far-fetched ideas into successes. Musk has founded PayPal, SpaceX, Tesla, among other companies. Like many INTJs, Musk is a brilliant polymath.
Bill gates never sought fame and fortune, yet he went on to become the richest man in the world owing to the success of Microsoft. Despite being a successful entrepreneur and philanthropist, he takes pride in his engineering and software development origins.
Paul Jarvis is a talented Technopreneur who has created successful podcasts, online courses, and software. He has a deep passion for writing and designing.
Ferriss is an American author, podcaster, and entrepreneur who has achieved success in the self-help and physical fitness space.
Sivers is a classic INTJ as he loves to learn and design useful things. He is a writer, entrepreneur, programmer, and musician. He founded CD Baby, an online store for aspiring musicians.
Marques Brownlee is often referred to as the best technology reviewer on the planet. Creative, original, and perfectionistic, Brownlee is one of the most successful Tech Youtubers out there.
Among the 16 MBTI types, INTJ typically have the highest thinking capacities. These types simply don’t accept the norm and abide by it if it doesn’t make sense. They would use their thinking prowess to question and doubt accepted norms and only accept them if it passes their rationality tests.
As such, philosophy comes naturally to them. Philosophy deals with the nature of existence as well as the knowledge and reality that shapes that existence. To comprehend such complex subjects requires intellectual obsession – something that comes effortlessly to most INTJs. Almost every INTJ you come across will likely have a burning passion for philosophical subjects and topics regardless if he/she is a philosopher.
Nietzche was an atheist German philosopher who was known to question established social norms and views including those of Christianity and traditional cultural doctrines.
Marx was a classic INTJ. He believed in using his work to influence and change the world for the better. Small, routinely tasks never interested him, but he was still practical and grounded.
Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King was an activist known for his contributions to the Civil Rights Movement back in the 1960s. His strong belief in his ideas and propositions is typical of many INTJs.
Jean-Paul Sartre was a French philosopher who held strong existentialist views that screamed freedom and originality.
Heraclitus was an ancient Greek philosopher best known for his views on change being the foremost inevitable reality of existence.
G.W.F. Hegel was a German philosopher whose work focused on the historical foundations of politics, religion, and ethics.
Aristotle was an early Greek philosopher and polymath who whose work deeply influenced the philosophical ideas that we have today.
INTJ Scientists and Mathematicians
INTJs have a naturally scientific mind because of their innate desire for knowledge, intelligence, and optimization. They are able to see things in a systematic and structured way, sometimes even applying the scientific method where it isn’t needed. Because of their ability to think big, understand the world’s workings, and generate insights, they often come up with ingenious ideas and solutions.
One key strength of INTJs compared to other types such as INTPs is their pragmatic and practical approach which enables them to translate their ideas into practical solutions. As a human race, we need INTJ scientists because, without them, we would be nowhere near to what we are today. Indeed, many scientific discoveries to date can be owed to the brilliance of these famous INTJ scientists and mathematicians.
Sir Isaac Newton
Having invented Calculus, Sir Isaac Newton was a highly significant mathematician, physician, and scientist. When Newton was formulating the principles of Calculus, it was his INTJ nature that helped him focus on the solutions needed rather than the abstract aspects.
John Nash was a mathematician who was known to question authority and go against the norm. He contributed the concept of “Nash Equilibrium” which is now widely used in game theory and economics.
Tesla was an engineer, inventor, and futurist who designed the alternating current (AC) system and the “Tesla coil” which are used extensively in electrical applications today. Like most INTJs, his ideas and predictions were always far ahead of his time.
Hawking’s brilliance is often compared to that of Albert Einstein. He was a renowned theoretical physicist, mathematician, and author known for his work on black holes and relativity.
Charles Darwin was a naturalist, geologist, biologist, and scientist most famous for his work on the theory of evolution.
Lise Meitner was a physicist who was part of a team that discovered nuclear fission. Her interests lied in radioactivity and nuclear physics.
Weiner was an American mathematician and professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He established the science of cybernetics.
INTJs are not normally found in politics due to their low tolerance for – well – politics. However, there are a number of notable politicians that are actually INTJs. INTJs can be excellent at devising detailed policies to address important problems. They also love to fix broken systems and improve the way things interlock within societies. INTJs also love being in control because they have the capacity to manage complex systems. For these reasons, you should not find it surprising if some INTJs have secret desires to conquer the world. For some INTJs, becoming a politician allows them to do the aforementioned. More importantly, it allows them to fix broken political systems and optimize them for the utilitarian benefit of everyone.
Hillary Clinton has a strong, objective, and passionate approach to her political endeavors. Some may perceive her as cold or insensitive, but that is merely a reflection of her INTJ-like decisiveness and pragmatism.
John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy was the 35th president of the United States. A key INTJ trait that he embodied was his rationality and objectivity. For example, he supported the separation of church and state despite being a devout catholic.
Michelle Obama is a writer, lawyer, and politician. She is Barack Obama’s wife as well as the first African-American First Lady of the US. Like many INTJs, she is logical and strong-willed.
Thomas Jefferson was the third president of the United States. He was well-rounded as a diplomat, statesman, lawyer, philosopher, architect, and most importantly, a key Founding Father of the United States.
Often ranked as the nation’s best president, Woodrow Wilson was the 28th president of the United States. He was a lawyer, academic, and an advocate for democracy.
James Polk was the 11th president of the United States. Polk was famous for his ability to undertake grand projects such as when he oversaw the territorial expansion of America.
Calvin Coolidge was America’s 30th president and he was known for his grit, perseverance, and determination to preserve traditional moral and economic principles.
Chester Arthur was a lawyer and politician who served America as its 21st president.
Augustus Caesar was Rome’s first emperor. He was a military leader and is best known for forming the Pax Romana. Like many INTJs, he did not care about recognition but that does not mean he wasn’t the greatest emperor of all time.
Colin Powell is a U.S. statesman and a former 4-star general in the U.S. army.
Peter the Great
Peter the Great is known for bringing Russia into the modern age as we know it. He was part of several reforms back in the 17th century which helped establish Russia as a great nation.
Putin is a walking tank of assertiveness, confidence, and command. While some may see these traits as caveats, they’ve played a key role in his success as Russia’s leader.
Rudy Giuliani is a lawyer, politician, and speaker who served as New York City’s mayor from 1994 through 2001. As of this writing, he is President Trump’s attorney.
John Adams was the second president of the U.S. He was a diplomat, writer, attorney, and one of the Founding Fathers of the nation.
When you look at that grim and stare, you can guess Donald Rumsfeld was probably an INTJ. Kidding aside, Rumsfeld is known for his logical and rational methods which is why he is commonly typed as INTJ. Donald Rumsfeld served the U.S. government as Secretary of Defense twice.
INTJ Writers and Authors
Most INTJs find it easier to express their large repository of complex thoughts into written words rather than verbally spoken expressions. Their ability to organize and structure information also enables them to write in a clear, understandable manner. Moreover, writing and authoring require creativity, relentless focus, critical thought, and knowledge – four things that INTJs are gifted with. When reading a book or piece of work written by an INTJ, expect to be amazed at the sheer ingenuity, clever use of language, and generous amounts of critical thought articulated in a flawless manner.
If you’ve read any of Christopher Hitchen’s works, it is very easy for you to come up with the hypothesis that he is an INTJ. Hitchens was an author, columnist, journalist, and social critic. Like many INTJs, Christopher Hitchens was an atheist.
Sun Tzu was an ancient Chinese military strategist, writer, and philosopher. Of all the 16 personality types, INTJs are known to be the best at strategy. As Sun Tzu was a legendary strategist in the military space, he was likely an INTJ.
C.S. Lewis was a writer, academic, and theologian. He was a Christian apologist writer known for using his superior logic and philosophy in his work.
Ayn Rand was a writer and philosopher famous for her philosophical structure which she named Objectivism. She is also a best-selling author of two famous novels.
Isaac Asimov was an author and highly successful writer known for his science fiction content. He was also an esteemed professor of biochemistry.
Jane Austen was a novelist who authored six novels that made their mark on British history. She was known to be a woman of wit, humor, and romance – not atypical for INTJs.
Sylvia Plath was a poet, novelist, and writer known for writing stimulating short stories.
Emily Bronte was a novelist, writer, and poet who only wrote one novel, “Wuthering Heights”. Her work is now considered a great classic in English literature.
Peter Jennings was a writer and journalist who at one time was the only anchor of ABC World News. Like many INTJs, he despised school and dropped out in high school.
William Buckley was American author, intellectual, and commentator. He was known for his unpredictability and capriciousness, but he remained level headed in his decisions.
Maria Shriver is an American author and journalist. She founded the nonprofit organization “The Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement”.
Josephine Tey is one the most famous crime writers out there. Being an INTJ, perhaps writing about crime came naturally to her.
Lewis Carroll mainly wrote about children’s fiction. One of his best pieces was “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.” Like many INTJs, Lewis was incredibly talented at wordplay.
John Maynard Keynes
John Maynard Keynes was an economist, writer, and academic. His ideas in the field of economics have made a huge impact on macroeconomics and public policies.
Paul Krugman is an economist, columnist, and writer. He is a highly influential economist and is well known in the academia for his contributions in trade theory and international finance.
Entertainment and the INTJ-type typically don’t go well together, but there are some famous INTJs that have succeeded in the industry. This is mainly because these famous INTJs were able to develop their naturally underdeveloped social sides. While INTJs are not that social and do not care for attention, they may enjoy the money, power, and fortune that the entertainment industry provides. Besides, INTJs are original and confident which means they can present their own style rather than follow the mainstream crowd.
Whether it is music, filmmaking, acting, or other kinds of entertainment talents, an entertainer must be good at connecting his thoughts with his or her actions and recognizing patterns (e.g. in music composition). Because INTJs are masterminds, they typically do well in filmmaking and scriptwriting. Many INTJs are also ambitious and take pride in their work. This certainly helps in the entertainment industry.
Jay-Z is a highly successful rapper, businessman, and philanthropist. His skills, talent, and confidence have given him success over success in the entertainment industry.
James Cameron is known for his innovative, instinctive, and insightful approach to film-making.
Ashley Olsen is an American actress, producer, and fashion designer. She began her acting career very early as a little child.
Having graduated from Yale, Jodie Foster is super smart. She is known for going against the crowd and doing things in her own style – something typical of INTJs – no surprises there.
Julia Stiles is an American actress born and raised in New York. She began acting at the age of 12 and has had a successful career ever since.
Russel Crowe portrays INTJ behaviors in that he always tries to excel in whatever he does. He works from intrinsic motivation rather than for external validation.
Roger Waters is a songwriter, singer, and music composer. He is one of the co-founders of the rock band “Pink Floyd”.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was a German music composer and pianist. He is considered as one of the most brilliant music geniuses of all time.
Glenn Gould was one of the best known classical pianists.
Erik Satie was a classic INTJ in many ways. The French composer had an unconventional, witty, and unique style which eventually influenced the music industry in France during the 20th century.
Elvis Costello is an English singer and songwriter. His most famous song is “Pump It Up” – a song that broke many records.
Dan Aykroyd is a musician, comedian, producer, and filmmaker. Indeed, a man of many talents.
Annie Clark is an American songwriter, singer, actress, and producer. She is also known by the name “St. Vincent”.
Jason Bateman is an American actor and director. He made his television debut in 1981 and grew to become a leading comedy actor.
Christopher Nolan is an ingenious director, producer, and screenwriter known for making mind-boggling and distinctive films.
INTJ Atheletes and Sportspersons
INTJs are not the best team players, but they do extremely well in individual sports. As individuals with extremely high self-confidence, INTJs are able to put in the dedicated number of hours needed to excel at their chosen sport. INTJs also love mastering their craft and they do tend to be perfectionists. It also helps that they naturally have high willpower and mental toughness.
INTJs see life as a giant chess board. This is one reason they make great Chess players. While many describe him as unsociable, Bobby Fischer is a renowned chess champion and is highly passionate about the game.
Bodybuilder, Actor, Governor – Arnold has done it all. This comes with no surprise as being a jack of all trades is a strong INTJ trait. Arnold often talks about setting goals and achieving them. He admits that he doesn’t like to live a normal life like others, which is why he is always seeking continuous improvement.
Lance Armstrong is a cancer survivor and former cyclist. After being banned from cycling due to a doping incident, he has since come back strong with multiple entrepreneurial ventures.
Arthur Ashe was an American tennis player who won three grand slam titles.
Tom Kite is an American golfer. He has been putting in tremendous focus and effort in his game ever since he was six years old.
Bill Belichick is an American football coach who heads the New England Patriots NFL team as their head coach.
Ivan Lendl is a tennis player who has won seven year-end championships and eight major titles in the sport. Tennis, being an individual sport, naturally appeals to INTJs.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a former basketball player who participated in 20 seasons of the NBA. He played for both Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers.
Like most INTJs, Martina is meticulous about her tennis game. She holds the records for most singles and doubles titles in the Open Era.
Orel Hershiser is a former baseball pitcher and poker player.
Our world doesn’t deserve criminals. Unfortunately, there will always be people with bad intentions – regardless of personality type. The INTJ personality type suits criminal pursuits because INTJs are very good at making plans and executing them. They are able to see far into the future. and they can assess the consequences of actions and events with striking accuracy.
That is not to say that all INTJs are evil masterminds or villains. It’s just that someone with bad intentions is more likely to succeed in his or her criminal activities if he or she is an INTJ. Although highly intelligent and adherent to personal standards, INTJ criminals may be cold, assertive, controlling, and borderline heartless.
Ted Kaczynski was formerly a mathematics professor, but later ended up on the wrong side of the law when he became a terrorist and anarchist.
Meyer Lansky was a powerful member of the mafia and an important figure in the development of organized crime in New York.
Adam Worth was cerebral and ambitious from an early age. In the late 1900s, he went on to become the most prominent safecracker and bank robber in New York.
Seung Hui Cho
Seung Hui Cho carried out one of the most terrible murders in U.S. history which killed 32 people and wounded 17.
Anders Brevik is a Norwegian terrorist and militant who killed 77 people in a bombing and shooting attack in Norway.
Adam Peter Lanza
Adam Peter Lanza was a serial killer, murderer, and shooter who perpetrated an attack at the Sandy Hook Elementary School back in 2012.
Gary Ridger is a serial killer who is famous for admitting to most of his crimes.
Ted Bundy was a serial killer who kidnapped, tortured, and murdered young women in the 1970s and earlier.
Jeffrey Dahmer, also known as the “Milwaukee Monster”. was a serial killer and sex offender who murdered 17 men from 1978 to 1991.
INTJ Fictional Characters
Let’s have some fun in this last section. Many fictional heroes and villains can be arguably typed as INTJs. Characters that are heavy on planning and “mastermind”-like pursuits are textbook INTJs. Evil professors, academics, or shrewd villains are all likely members of the INTJ family.
Without a doubt, fictional consulting detective Sherlock Holmes is a classic INTJ. He is obsessed with problem-solving and is always lost in his own mind, but he enjoys being in this state rather than becoming stressed by it.
Professor Moriarty is Sherlock Holmes’ archnemesis. In the Sherlock Holmes stories, he is explicitly portrayed as a criminal mastermind. While he is as “INTJ” as Sherlock Holmes, he uses his mind for cruel purposes. Holmes even called him the “Napoleon” of Crime.
Dr. Hannibal Lecter
Dr. Hannibal Lecter is a serial killer and forensic psychiatrist who features in a series of suspense novels made by Thomas Harris.
Walter White is the protagonist in the TV series “Breaking Bad”.
In the TV series Breaking Bad, Gus Fring is a drug boss, business magnate, and restaurateur.
Dr. Gregory House
Dr. Gregory House is the title character of the American TV series “House”.
Light Yagami is the primary protagonist in the TV series “Death Note”. Although Light is depicted as a sociopath, she is shown to harbor intense hatred for criminals.
Bruce Wayne AKA Batman is the ultimate INTJ. He has rock solid principles, values solitude, and has unparalleled self-confidence. Notably, he likes to observe in the background and take control only if necessary – a classic INTJ behavior!
Victor Frankenstein is a stereotypical INTJ in many regards, as evidenced by his ability to connect the dots in the story.
In Julius Caesar, Cassius was the mastermind behind the assassination of Julius Caesar.
In the novel Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Darcy comes across as an aloof, well-off, and mysterious romantic interest.
Ro Laren or “Ensign Ro” was a Star Trek character known for her famous line, “You know me, I enjoy a challenge.” A very INTJ thing to say, indeed.
Dexter Morgan, from the TV show “Dexter” is often typed as INTJ. While some argue he may be INTP, most of his behaviors lean towards INTJ. He portrays an eccentric personality with a hint of mental instability possibly due to psychopathic and sociopathic tendencies.
Dr. Otto Octavius
Many INTJs have secret desires to be mad scientists because they are highly intelligent. Doctor Octopus from Spiderman is exactly this – a myopic mad scientist with stubborn intentions.
Ernst Stavro Blofeld
Ernst Stavro Blofeld is the villain from the James Bond series. He, too, is a criminal mastermind.
INTJ women are extremely rare and perhaps the writers of The Hunger Games did not realize that they created an INTJ protagonist. She gives of a cold and calculated demeanor that is usually unseen in women.
Magneto from X-men is clearly an INTJ. He shows a strong intuitive understanding of situations which enables him to focus on problems at hand.
Reserved, strong, and insightful, Michael Corleone from The Godfather Trilogy is a classic INTJ.
Don Vito Corleone from The Godfather is arguably an INTJ due to his quick-thinking and far-sighted view of the future.
Mr. Burns from the Simpsons is a stereotypical INTJ. His cunning and one-dimension villain personality reveal this all too easily.
Petyr Baelish from Game of Thrones shows so many signs of being an INTJ, such as when he plots schemes for no apparent reasons other than the ingenuity of it.
Reed Richards is an INTJ hero. He has an amazing mind and does even more amazing things with it.
Gandalf from the Lord of the Rings is often typed as INTJ because of his independent, obsessive, and comprehensive approach to things.
Like most INTJs, Mr. Miyagi from The Karate Kid is a natural mentor and teacher because he knows his craft all too well.
Jay Gatsby of The Great Gatsby is highly ambitious and driven. He visualized a better life for himself and then made a plan to reach it – a feat INTJs are most capable of.
So there you have it! If you made it until here, you might want to take a personality test yourself to check your type, perhaps you’re an INTJ too?
Take note that the MBTI is only one method of assessing personality types. Be sure to check out this guide for a complete overview of the different personality type assessments out there.
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