Barbie Inducts Madam C.J. Walker into Inspiring Women Series

First U.S. female millionaire gets her own honorary doll.
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License Global

August 24, 2022

The Madam C.J. Walker holding the Wonderful Hair Grower.
The Madam C.J. Walker holding the Wonderful Hair Grower.Mattel

In 2018,


debuted the Inspiring Women Series, a doll line dedicated to honoring historical and present-day role models for girls. 

The series has paid tribute to a diverse lineup of women including

Dr. Jane Goodall


Ida B Wells

, Dr. Maya Angelou,

Helen Keller


Eleanor Roosevelt

, Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson, Frida Kahlo,

Rosa Parks, Sally Ride


Billie Jean King, Ella Fitzgerald, Florence Nightingale

and Susan B. Anthony. 

The latest doll in the series was announced as Madam C.J. Walker, a Black entrepreneur, philanthropist and activist who would eventually become the first documented U.S. self-made female millionaire through her line of cosmetics and hair care products made specifically for Black women. Walker is recognized for her dedication in supporting several orphanages, YWCAs, YMCAs and Black colleges along with social justice advocacy in support of the NAACP and other civil rights organizations. The doll is dressed in a floral printed blouse paired with a full-length turquoise skirt and is holding a miniature replica of her original Wonderful Hair Grower product. 

Madam C.J. Walker.


a pioneer in entrepreneurship, philanthropy and activism, creating the blueprint for the self-made American businesswoman and innovators of the twentieth century, Madam C.J. Walker is an embodiment of our Barbie Inspiring Women series,” says Lisa McKnight, executive vice president and global head, Barbie and Dolls,


. “We’re honored to welcome her into this group of trailblazing women and introduce more kids to her journey of becoming one of the nation’s first widely successful female founders.” 

Madam C.J. Walker doll.

Barbie’s newest Inspiring Women Series doll sets out to directly impact the Black community, through the Dream Gap Project Fund, to help remove barriers that prevent the next generation from reaching their full potential.  

“It was a joy to work with Barbie on the design and creation of an Inspiring Women doll made in the likeness of my great-great grandmother, Madam C.J. Walker,” says A’Lelia Bundles, Walker’s great-great granddaughter and official biographer. “Their design team graciously welcomed me throughout all steps of the process – from hair development to packaging – to capture and celebrate the legacy of this trailblazing Black businesswoman. I can’t wait for a new generation to be inspired by her story and to tell their own stories through a role model who came before them.” 

Mattel is exhibiting at Brand Licensing Europe 2022. Find more info



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