How Kristi Yamaguchi’s Trailblazing Win Resulted in Her Own Barbie Doll

• Kristi Yamaguchi became the first Asian American woman to win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics in 1992
• She now has her own Barbie doll as part of Mattel’s Inspiring Women series for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
• Kristi hopes to inspire young girls by serving as a role model and reflecting on her own experiences with her Dorothy Hamill Barbie doll as a child

Here is what happened:

Kristi Yamaguchi made history as the first Asian American woman to win at the Winter Olympics, taking home a gold medal in figure skating. Reflecting on her monumental achievement, Kristi recalls feeling overwhelmed at the age of 20 by the support and pride she received from the Asian American community. Fast forward 32 years, and winning gold at the 1992 Winter Olympics remains a standout moment for Kristi and Olympic history. She now has her own Barbie doll as part of Mattel’s Inspiring Women series, commemorating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

Seeing the finished doll of her 20-year-old self was a surreal experience for Kristi. She expressed a sense of appreciation for those who paved the way before her, like the late Anna May Wong, the first Asian American actress. Kristi’s doll serves as a testament to the progress made by generations before her and the impact of representation and inspiration for young girls today. She hopes to inspire them to dream big and overcome challenges, drawing from her own experiences as a young skater looking up to role models like Dorothy Hamill.

As a child, Kristi found motivation and inspiration in her Dorothy Hamill Barbie doll, seeing it as a symbol of her dream and a reminder to persevere through the ups and downs of her skating journey. She acknowledges the significance of having a tangible representation of her aspirations and the power of iconic figures like Hamill in shaping her own goals and ambitions. Kristi’s story serves as a reminder of the importance of representation and inspiration in empowering the next generation of dreamers and achievers.

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