5 Rifca Stanescu – Youngest Grandmother
Not sure this one is quite as remarkable as it is troubling, but back in 2009, a gypsy wife became the world’s youngest grandmother at the seemingly impossible age of 23. Rifca Stanescu, a native of the village of Investi, Romania, gave birth to her first child, Maria, when she was just 12 years old. Then, following in her mother’s fertile footsteps, Maria gave birth to a son, Ion, when she was just 11. And just when you thought it couldn’t get any weirder, Ion was engaged to an 8-year-old by the time he was two. So, yeah… wow.
4 Balamurali Ambati – Youngest Doctor
Turns out Doogie Howser, M.D. wasn’t such a heinous premise for a show after all. After graduating from New York University at the age of thirteen, Balamurali Ambati moved on to Mount Sinai School of Medicine, a program from which he graduated in 1995 and became the world’s youngest doctor at just 17 years old. Then, as if he hadn’t already accomplished enough, he completed his ophthalmology residence at Harvard. He currently serves as the director of corneal research at the University of Utah School of Medicine, and, we imagine, is really good at Jeopardy.
3 QuvenzhanéWallis – Youngest Oscar Nominee
Earlier this year, 9-year-old Quvenzhané Wallis made Academy Award history when she became the youngest ever nominee for Best Actress in a Leading role. Earning the nomination for her role in Beasts of the Southern Wild, Quvenzhané was just 5 years old when she first auditioned for the film. Had she taken the award home, she would have been the youngest ever to win, but in this case, it was legitimately “an honor just to be nominated.”
2 Jordan Romero – Youngest Atop Everest
Back in 2010, Jordan Romero, a 13-year-old boy from Big Bear, California, became the youngest person ever to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Accompanied by a team that included his father, a paramedic, and their Sherpa guides, Romero reached the world’s highest peak at an age three years younger than the previous record-holder. Having already climbed most of the world’s highest mountains, Romero now hopes to climb the highest mountains in all 50 US States (a goal slightly loftier than the predominant hope of the average young teenage boy; to feel a boob).
1 Sindhuja Rajaraman – Youngest CEO
Sure, working your way into middle management after ten years at the same company might feel like a legitimate accomplishment, but don’t get too high on your horse just yet. Sindhuja Rajaraman, a young girl from India, became the youngest ever CEO when she was founded Seppan Entertainment, an animation company based out of Chennai, when she was just 14 years old. Not only does she hold the title of CEO, she is also an animator and is among the fastest at 2D and 3D animation.