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top dog

The person who is the best at something, or who is in charge, is the top dog — whether it's the most popular kid at school, a classroom teacher, or the President of the United States.

You may have heard the term underdog, or someone who is unlikely to win. The top dog is the opposite, and both come from dog fighting, in which one dog is victorious — the top dog — and the one on the bottom — the underdog — is the loser.

Definitions of top dog
  1. noun
    a person who is in charge
    synonyms: chief, head
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    examples:
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    Haman
    (Old Testament) the minister of the Persian emperor who hated the Jews and was hanged for plotting to massacre them
    Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles
    British colonial administrator who founded Singapore (1781-1826)
    Cesar Ritz
    Swiss hotelier who created a chain of elegant hotels (1850-1918)
    Petrus Stuyvesant
    the last Dutch colonial administrator of New Netherland; in 1664 he was forced to surrender the colony to England (1592-1672)
    Ahmed Zoki Yamani
    Saudi Arabian minister of petroleum who was a central figure in the creation of OPEC (born in 1930)
    Albert Gore Jr.
    Vice President of the United States under Bill Clinton (born in 1948)
    types:
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    administrator, executive
    someone who manages a government agency or department
    administrator, decision maker
    someone who administers a business
    capo
    the head of a branch of an organized crime syndicate
    department head
    the head of a department
    don, father
    the head of an organized crime family
    general, superior general
    the head of a religious order or congregation
    general manager
    the highest ranking manager
    grand dragon
    a high ranking person in the Ku Klux Klan
    head of household
    the head of a household or family or tribe
    secretary
    a person who is head of an administrative department of government
    academic administrator
    an administrator in a college or university
    commissioner
    a government administrator
    director, manager, managing director
    someone who controls resources and expenditures
    DCI, Director of Central Intelligence
    the head of the United States Intelligence Community and director of the Central Intelligence Agency
    executive, executive director
    a person responsible for the administration of a business
    hosteller, hotel manager, hotelier, hotelkeeper, hotelman
    an owner or manager of hotels
    land agent
    a person who administers a landed estate
    materfamilias, matriarch
    a female head of a family or tribe
    paterfamilias, patriarch
    the male head of family or tribe
    prefect
    a chief officer or chief magistrate
    Attorney General, US Attorney General, United States Attorney General
    the person who holds the position of secretary of the Justice Department
    Agriculture Secretary, Secretary of Agriculture
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Agriculture
    Commerce Secretary, Secretary of Commerce
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Commerce
    Defense Secretary, Secretary of Defense
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Defense Department
    Education Secretary, Secretary of Education
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Education
    Energy Secretary, Secretary of Energy
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Energy
    Secretary of Health and Human Services
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Health and Human Services
    Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Housing and Urban Development
    Labor Secretary, Secretary of Labor
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Labor
    Secretary of State
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of State
    Interior Secretary, Secretary of the Interior
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Interior Department
    Secretary of the Treasury, Treasury Secretary
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Treasury Department
    Secretary of Transportation, Transportation Secretary
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Transportation
    Secretary of Veterans Affairs
    the person who holds the secretaryship of the Department of Veterans Affairs
    Secretary General
    a person who is a chief administrator (as of the United Nations)
    security director
    head of a private security force working for a business or industry
    triumvir
    one of a group of three sharing public administration or civil authority especially in ancient Rome
    undersecretary
    a secretary immediately subordinate to the head of a department of government
    vice chancellor
    a deputy or assistant to someone bearing the title of chancellor
    type of:
    leader
    a person who rules or guides or inspires others
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