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While folks continue to debate whether or not Michelle Obama should be wearing shorts, the First Lady finds she was announced Thursday as No. 40 on the newly-announced Forbes 100 list of most powerful women in the world.

“Not only is she a First Lady, she’s the first African-American First Lady and that accords her a certain amount of power,” said Heidi Brown, a ForbesWoman staffer who helped compile the list.

When ranking the women, Brown said they take into consideration how much attention a candidate gathers – and Mrs. Obama – as evidenced this week – is a media magnet.

“She’s done a lot to get her message out,” Brown said. “She’s been effective at reaching out not only to the media, but to regular people as well.”

The cover girl this year was Internet queen Carol Bartz of Yahoo!, who was No. 12 on the list.

Members of the Obama administration making the list include Homeland Security honcho Janet Napolitano (51), SEC chief Mary Schapiro (55) and Health and Human Services head Kathleen Sebelius (56). Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was 36th – down from the 28th spot she occupied on the list last year when she was a presidential candidate.

Read more here.