“Barbie recognises that all frontline workers have made tremendous sacrifices when confronting the pandemic and the challenges it heightened. To shine a light on their efforts, we are sharing their stories and leveraging Barbie’s platform to inspire the next generation to take after these heroes and give back. Our hope is to nurture and ignite the imaginations of children playing out their own storyline as heroes,” said Lisa McKnight, senior vice president and global head of Barbie & Dolls, Mattel.
The global lineup of women honoured with a one-of-a-kind doll includes:
• Amy O’Sullivan, RN (United States): Emergency room nurse Amy O’Sullivan treated the first Covid-19 patient in Brooklyn at the Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, became ill and was intubated, then a few weeks later returned to work to continue taking care of others.
• Dr Audrey Sue Cruz (United States): Dr Cruz, a frontline worker from Las Vegas, during the pandemic, joined forces with other Asian-American physicians to fight racial bias and discrimination.
• Dr Chika Stacy Oriuwa (Canada): A psychiatry resident at the University of Toronto, Canada, Dr Oriuwa has advocated against systemic racism in healthcare, which has been further highlighted by the pandemic.
• Professor Sarah Gilbert (United Kingdom): As a professor of vaccinology, Professor Gilbert led the development of the University of Oxford vaccine in the UK.
• Dr Jaqueline Goes de Jesus (Brazil): As a biomedical researcher, Dr Goes is credited for leading the sequencing of the genome of a Covid-19 variant in Brazil.
Dr Kirby White (Australia): A general practitioner in Australia, Dr White co-founded the Gowns for Doctors initiative – by developing a PPE gown that could be laundered and re-used, allowing frontline workers in Victoria to continue seeing patients during the pandemic.
This is a continuation of Mattel’s #ThankYouHeroes signature programme, launched last year as part of the company’s broader 'Play it Forward' platform, focused on leveraging Mattel’s brands to give back to communities in times of need. The programme honours individuals who have led the fight against Covid-19, as well as the everyday heroes who have kept communities up and running.