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Azhelle Wade (The Toy Coach)

April 28, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Azhelle Wade

This talk is co-hosted with RADY School of Management.

**Note: Per the speakers request, the talk will not be recorded or published for public viewing.**

*All Spring Design@Large talks will be hosted online. This aligns with UC San Diego policy that all events be hosted virtual during the Spring 2021 quarter.

The Ripple Effect of Bias in the Toy Industry

In this talk, Azhelle Wade will discuss how to respond when you are confronted with racial bias in the workplace when you need to protect your job. Most importantly, she will answer why it’s so important to fight for representation in toys and children’s media.

About the Speaker

Azhelle’s been having way too much fun in the toy industry over the past 10 years working for companies like Toys R Us, Party City, and Madame Alexander, just to name a few! She’s climbed up and across the ladder in the toy world, starting out as a designer, later gaining 3 toy patents and eventually becoming a VP at a toy company.

But, after building and mentoring a diverse and talented team toward success, she had the vision to do the same with newcomers to the toy industry. With that thought, Azhelle combined her industry knowledge, inspirational mantras, and extra passionate toy talks to create the now top-rated toy podcast, Making It In The Toy Industry.

Today Azhelle is known industry-wide as The Toy Coach. She joyfully works as a consultant for popular IP’s and toy companies of all sizes. Her online course, Toy Creators Academy empowers newbies in the toy industry with step-by-step guidance, downloadable worksheets, and group coaching.

Azhelle’s mantra for her followers is, make it toyetic!

About Design@Large

Design@Large is a speaker series that is hosted by The Design Lab at UCSD, where each quarter we examine a topic in society and the relevance and implications through the lens of human centered design.

Co-hosted by Elizabeth Eikey and Edward Wang and developed in partnership with Carrie Sawyer of Diversity by Design, Design@Large this quarter is a continuation of Winter 2021. The focus is racism in the design of everyday things across a range of topics, such as artificial intelligence, healthcare, advertising, and more. Talks will help shed light on the historical context of racism, the consequences of “designing” without understanding racism’s deep roots, and provide examples of anti-racist and equitable approaches in practice. Too often we want to jump straight to action, but without building our capacity to understand racism (and other “isms”) and critically evaluating its impact, we perpetuate racism and inequity – even with the best intentions. Through an exciting lineup of speakers, this series begins to make connections between history and designing and aims to promote awareness around the lifelong practice of anti-racist work across a variety of interconnected domains.


April 28, 2021
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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