Visits to a Dr. are often not pleasant: something ails, there's an injury, a general malaise. This is not true during any encounters with a unique Dr. who specializes in fun times, happy hours, and things playful. O.K., she is not an M.D. or even a D.D.S., but her unsurpassed knowledge and experience with playthings makes her a prominent figure in our world of toys and games. Stevanne Auerbach has certainly earned the highly respected and special title of Dr. Toy.
I became aware of Dr. Toy's expertise forty year ago in my early days with the Milton Bradley Company. Stevanne Auerbach was chosen to review the Company's product line for games with intrinsically educational as well as entertaining value. The selection was printed in a brochure for circulation to educators and general consumers. That piece was important to Milton Bradley since the Company prided itself on marketing games that were both fun and "Keys to Learning."
Dr. Toy's stature as an expert on play and playthings has grown immeasurably since those early MB days. Our industry boasts of thousands of new playthings launched each year, the majority targeting children. Dr. Toy knows which are safe, challenging, entertaining, and have suitable play value for specific ages. Much of that information has been online since 1995. The site provides company links, parent links, and posts by industry professionals who offer helpful insights on how the industry creates new playthings. Specific products are cited as recipients of the coveted "Dr. Toy's Best Products Awards". Over her long service to the industry, she has recognized over 5000 products be they classics, green, seasonal, or best values for the price. Her publications are must reads for anyone active in the toy and game business.
The devotion and efforts Dr. Toy has directed toward the industry as author, creator, advocate, and promotor of play makes her a real industry treasure. Visits to the Dr's website should be regular and frequent rather than the annual encounters with Drs. practicing more serious specialties.