Everyday we are focused on helping our members to be great at what they do and today marks another exciting step towards making this possible for millions of professionals. For some time, you’ve been able to follow news by industry and sources, companies, and groups — these updates have seamlessly become part of the discussions you’re having everyday on LinkedIn with your peers. And now, you can follow other professionals on LinkedIn.

Not just any professionals, but 150 of the most influential thought leaders on LinkedIn who will be sharing unique knowledge and professional insights. Starting today, you can follow the likes of Richard Branson, Tony Robbins, Caterina Fake, Craig Newmark, President Barack Obama, Governor Mitt Romney, and many more. Read what they are saying, like and comment directly on their posts, and share with your network.

In addition to having access to status updates, you’ll start to see longer form and original posts from influencers with videos, photos, and Slideshare presentations. Some of the first topics to be addressed include:

Over the next few months, you’ll see us continue to expand the list of influencers you can follow. We’ll take a look at both universally-recognized thought leaders across LinkedIn and also industry-specific movers and shakers.

We know millions of conversations take place on LinkedIn everyday. Today, we’re providing another way for you to get even more value from LinkedIn by accessing the incredible insights and information directly from some of the most recognized and influential professionals on LinkedIn. We’ve also made it even easier for you to join or start a professional discussion. Whether you’re commenting on Mandalay Entertainment CEO Peter Guber’s post about achieving success through fame and misfortune to sharing about how Delos Cosgrove went from cardiac surgeon to CEO of Cleveland Clinic, the second largest private medical practice in the world. Take a look here and start following someone today.