What about a favorite poster plugin. - any interest here?
You could click on up to x number of posters and they would be "Favorited". (perhaps limiting number to 5 or 10 favorite posters per individual).
And in their profile it would show a list of people who favorited them and maybe a scoreboard for the 10 most favorited posters in the forum.
if there is interest (and perhaps a few pledges), let me know, and I could begin another plugin project .
I may not provide the completed solution you might desire, but I do try to provide honest suggestions to help you solve your issue.