President’s Letter -- December 6, 2010: Kicking Off
the Season with a TOTY Spectacular
TIA had a terrific new event on the Monday before Thanksgiving.
Over 50 media reps and others showed up in a holiday setting overlooking
the Bryant Park skating rink in New York for the announcement of the
2010 TOTY Award Nominations.
This is the first time we have made such a big deal out of the
nominations. In the past, we saved our media blitz for the
February TOTY event where the winning toy is announced in each
category. But now is the season when parents and other toy givers
are looking to find the best toys for the holidays, and the TOTY
nominees deserve their attention. And it doesn’t hurt for us
to promote some joyful messages about toys as a counterweight to the
attempts by some groups to damage the reputation of our industry.
In addition to the new venue and event, TIA has vastly expanded the
process by which toys are nominated and the final winners are
selected. Nominations are awarded by independent panels of experts
in each category consisting of retailers, manufacturers, inventors and
toy trade publications. Once nominated, the final winners will be
chosen by a weighted voting process including consumers, retailers,
manufacturers and the media. We anticipate thousands of votes
through our new website, www.toyawards.org and we are
confident that the new processes will result in selections that everyone
can agree upon. Photos from the press conference can be viewed on
the TIA website.
But for me, the best part of our new event was the choir from the
LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts that came to entertain us
with holiday music. These kids had all the energy and spirit and
joie de vivre that come only from youth, and they were as excited about
being part of the announcement of the nominees as anyone could be.
They were a joy to behold and a reminder of what our industry is really