TRI-CITIES, Tenn. (WJHL) – An East Tennessee elementary student made national television Tuesday morning while sharing in a historic moment for the Down Syndrome community.
In a segment on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Mattel expanded its Barbie brand by formally announcing the latest addition to its Barbie Fashionista Collection.
In May 2022, the company announced a new line of dolls focused on representing people with disabilities and furthering diversity and inclusion. Existing dolls in the collection include Barbies of varying skin colors, weights, and hair. Dolls representing those with disability previously included Barbies with prosthetics or wheelchairs.
The new doll debuted on Tuesday is the first in the company’s 60-year history to represent Down Syndrome for the brand.
Zaylei Adams of Greeneville, a student at Doak Elementary School, was among peers on the New York TV set playing with the dolls and sharing in the awe of the moment.
The new Barbie was created through a partnership between Mattel and the National Down Syndrome Society, an organization in which Zaylei’s mother Misty serves as the Manager of Community Events.
According to Mattel, the latest Barbie could be on shelves at major retailers as soon as this Summer.