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American Girl Introduces 2021 Girl of the Year

American Girl Introduces 2021 Girl of the Year

Kira Bailey is a 10-year-old from Michigan who cares deeply for the environment and animals.


American Girl announced its 2021 Girl of the Year, Kira Bailey—a 10-year-old who loves animals and cares deeply about the environment. She joins AG's line of characters that inspire children to make positive changes in the world. Kira confronts critical ecological issues, like wildlife protection and climate change. 

“As American Girl kicks off its 35th year, Kira joins our lineup of diverse and purposeful characters who star in stories that reflect the realities of the times—whether it’s historical or modern-day,” says Jamie Cygielman, general manager of American Girl. “As we all witnessed the bushfires rage in Australia last year and start up again this September, and the devastating wildfires in the western United States, we knew it was important to focus Kira’s story on the major conservation and climate challenges facing our planet today—causes that are extremely important to today’s youth. Through Kira, we hope our fans will learn that we all have a part to play in taking positive action for our planet.”

Kira is an 18-inch doll with green eyes, long, wavy blonde hair, and comes dressed in a tie dye tank, sporty skirt, and lace up boots. Her signature accessories include a backpack with a koala keychain and a wide-brimmed sun hat. Several other Australian-inspired outfits are available for girls to purchase, like Kira's girl-and-doll koala pajamas and plush animals like. a kangaroo and joey, koala, and wombat. Kira also has an Animal Exam Table and Comfy Platform Tent with over 20 authentic accessories to further children's interest in wildlife rehabilitation and rescue. 

american girl doll of the year



Kira was created with the help of author Erin Teagan, who holds a master's degree in science and traveled to Australia to gain a deeper understanding of Kira's experiences. Other specialists in Australian wildlife and culture reviewed Kira's manuscripts and products to ensure every detail was rooted in real science and practices. 

To further support Kira's message, American Girl is partnering with NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service, Inc. (WIRES), which is Australias largest wildlife rescue organization. WIRES is dedicated to rescuing and caring for sick, injured, and orphaned animals. AG is matching customer donations to the organization dollar for dollar up to $25,000 through Dec. 30, 2021. 

“Last year, Australia’s fire season was unlike anything previously experienced in terms of scale and severity, with fires destroying millions of hectares of land—much of which was threatened-species habitat,” says Kyla Shelley, chief operating officer for WIRES. “Wild species worldwide are facing enormous challenges—including extinction—mainly due to habitat loss, natural disasters, and climate change. Just like Kira discovers, everyone can get involved in wildlife rescue and protection, and it’s not too late to make a difference wherever you live.” 

In celebration of Kira's debut, a variety of videos are available on American Girl's YouTube and Youtube Kids Channels, including a six-week "Meet Kira" stop-motion series, music videos, and DIY crafts.


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Melissa Wickes

Author: Melissa Wickes, a graduate of Binghamton University and the NYU Summer Publishing Institute, is the production editor for NYMetroParents. She's written hundreds of articles to help New York parents make better decisions for their families. When she's not writing, you can find her eating pasta, playing guitar, or watching reality TV. See More

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