Ayatollah Khomeini (May 17, 1900? - June 3, 1989) was a Shi'a Muslim cleric and marja, and the political and spiritual leader of the 1979 Iranian Revolution which saw the overthrow of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran. Following the Revolution, Khomeini held the office of Supreme Leader, the paramount figure in the political system of the new Islamic Republic, and retained this position until his death.
Khomeini was considered a spiritual leader to many Shi'a Muslims, and in Iran is officially addressed as Imam rather than Ayatollah, and his supporters also adhere to this convention. Khomeini was also a highly influential and innovative Islamic political theorist, most noted for his development of the theory of velayat-e faqih, the "guardianship of the jurisconsult". He was named Time Magazine's Man of the Year in 1979.