People of Play, the organization known for championing toy and game innovators around the world, will honor outstanding achievements at the 16th Annual Toy & Game International Excellence Awards (The TAGIEs) on November 3, 2023. With the theme “Heroes of Play” and sponsored by Disney, Oxford Games, Mattel, The Michael Kohner Corporation, Hasbro, The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA), Longshore and Nextoy, the evening’s festivities, which kick-off at 6:00pm with a preview of the PlayCHIC toy inspired looks that will be on the runway the next day at the Chicago Toy & Game Fair.
In a year of Barbie everything and everywhere, this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award will go to two people that changed the trajectory of Barbie to new heights years ago: Jill Barad, Consultant and former CEO and Chairman of Mattel, and Rouben Terzian, Founder of Terzian Enterprises and Co-Founder of BMT – Big Monster Toy.
“We are so excited to be able to honor these titans of the toy industry with Lifetime Achievement Awards as well as all of the TAGIE nominees and winners,” said Mary Couzin, President of People of Play. “The toy and game industry is truly a family that celebrates and supports one another. We can’t wait to see you in Chicago on November 3 at this extraordinary event.”
Other highlights include a Welcome by JoAnn McLaughlin, EVP Merchandising – Hard lines at Marvel Entertainment, and the evening Keynote by Tim Kilpin, President, Toys, Licensing & Entertainment at Hasbro. Being honored for Game Changers – Unsung Heroes are Tara McGrath, Creative Director, Inventor Relations and Innovations, Mattel, and Michael Gramelspacher, Jon Harter, & SG Labs for Club Organizers for St Clare School Innovator Club.
Throughout the evening, nine awards will be presented to the winners in the following categories: Toy Innovator of the Year, Game Innovator of the Year, Rising Star Innovator of the Year, Most Innovative PR and Marketing Team of the Year, Most Innovative Art and Design Visuals of the Year, Most Innovative Supplier of the Year, Most Innovative Retailer of the Year, Most Innovative License of the Year and Young Innovator of the Year (under 18 years old). Voting at the TAGIE Awards Voting Page is open until midnight October 20th.
Entertainment will be provided by:
· Mark Setteducati, inventor of magic, illusions, games and puzzles.
· Barry McLaughlin and Jason Lautenschleger of Barry and Jason Entertainment
· Skip Towne and the Greyhounds, Chicago’s #1 Blues Band and part of the TAGIEs for over 10 years!
The 16th Annual TAGIEs will be hosted by the talented Karri Bean, Senior Licensing Manager, Disney Parks Experiences & Products. Tickets to the TAGIE Awards are still available here.