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Barbie® Honors Dr. Maya Angelou as Latest Inspiring Women™ Doll

EL SEGUNDO, Calif.– Jan. 14, 2021 – This month, Barbie® is continuing its commitment to inspire girls to dream big by welcoming writer, author, activist, and teacher Dr. Maya Angelou to the Barbie® Inspiring Women™ series, which pays tribute to incredible heroines of their time.

“We are so proud to include Dr. Maya Angelou in the Barbie Inspiring Women line. As a powerful writer and activist, her extraordinary life and unforgettable legacy is exactly what we hope this collection inspires in the next generation,” said Lisa McKnight, Senior Vice President and Global Head of Barbie and Dolls, Mattel. “By introducing children to Dr. Maya Angelou’s courageous story and written works through doll play, our goal is to spark conversation and awareness with children and their families.”

Dr. Maya Angelou received numerous awards and accolades including over 50 honorary doctorates. Her 1970 autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was nominated for the National Book Award and continues to move readers today. In 1993, she became the first African American and female poet to speak at a U.S. Presidential inauguration.

Sculpted to her likeness, Dr. Angelou’s BarbieInspiring Women Doll holds a miniature replica of her prolific autobiography, while wearing a head wrap and floor-length dress with floral print.

Barbie’s Inspiring Women series, which began in 2018, has celebrated nine courageous women who took risks, changed rules and paved the way for generations of girls to dream bigger than ever before. Last year, the series paid tribute to Billie Jean King, Ella Fitzgerald, Florence Nightingale, and Susan B. Anthony who made history by making the world a better place for future generations of girls. Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson, Frida Kahlo, Rosa Parks and Sally Ride have also been honored as part of the series.


Mattel is a leading global toy company and owner of one of the strongest catalogs of children’s and family entertainment franchises in the world. We create innovative products and experiences that inspire, entertain and develop children through play. We engage consumers through our portfolio of iconic brands, including Barbie®, Hot Wheels®, Fisher-Price®, American Girl®, Thomas & Friends®, UNO® and MEGA®, as well as other popular intellectual properties that we own or license in partnership with global entertainment companies. Our offerings include film and television content, gaming, music and live events. We operate in 35 locations and our products are available in more than 150 countries in collaboration with the world’s leading retail and ecommerce companies. Since its founding in 1945, Mattel is proud to be a trusted partner in empowering children to explore the wonder of childhood and reach their full potential.