vanguard

If you are in the vanguard, you're up front. It could be that you are in the vanguard of an advancing army, or in the vanguard of any movement, trend, or occupation.

Vanguard is an old variation of the French word avant-garde meaning "fore-guard" or "front guard." Vanguard and avant-garde have the same basic meaning, but avant-garde generally describes artistic endeavors, while vanguard can be more widely applied. You might talk about the vanguard of fashion on the red carpet, the vanguard of medical research at a university, or the vanguard of a political movement at a demonstration.

Definitions of vanguard
  1. noun
    the leading units moving at the head of an army
    synonyms: van
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    type of:
    army unit
    a military unit that is part of an army
  2. noun
    any creative group active in the innovation and application of new concepts and techniques in a given field (especially in the arts)
    synonyms: avant-garde, new wave, van
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    type of:
    art movement, artistic movement
    a group of artists who agree on general principles
  3. noun
    the position of greatest importance or advancement; the leading position in any movement or field
    synonyms: cutting edge, forefront
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    type of:
    perspective, position, view
    a way of regarding situations or topics etc.
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