The Fresh Dolls Collection. – Photo courtesy of The Fresh Dolls

By Dr. SELENA SEABROOKS                                                                                                                                  The Dallas Examiner 

“I want children of every age to see themselves reflected back in everything,” Dr. Lisa Williams, founder of World Entertainment, Publishing and Inspiration, said about The Fresh Dolls collections. “Our company is involved with empowering people of color in every category.”

The collection embodies the image of people of all nationalities, shapes and sizes – which builds self-esteem and empowers children to embrace their own individual beauty.

Reflecting on the company’s creation, Williams recalled watching a documentary on an updated doll study.

“I thought it was going to be a monotonous kind of a show because I thought I knew where we were. We know in the ‘50s and ‘60s, when they ran the doll study by Kenneth and Mamie Clark, that virtually every child, including the African American children, all said they wanted to play with the White doll and that the Black doll was dumb, stupid, bad, etc.,” she revealed.

Williams noted that it was 2009 at the time of the documentary; the country had its first African American president and beautiful African American first family in the White House; African Americans braced the covers of magazines and were voted most beautiful in the world. Williams expressed that despite this, she was shocked by the results of the updated doll study.

“This beautiful dark chocolate little girl, I mean gorgeous. They asked her which doll she wanted to play with. She surprised me with she said she wanted to play with the White doll,” Williams stated. “But what broke my heart was when she said why. And she said because the Black skin was nasty.”

After viewing the documentary, Williams knew she had to do something.

“We can’t have a whole generation of girls believing that they’re less than – not seeing their beauty,” she said.

That day, Williams created the World of EPI. The company started with books, then moved to dolls – The Fresh Dolls, to uplift, empower, inspire, and have beautiful self-reflection for African American children and children of color.

“I didn’t have any mentoring. I didn’t have any money. I didn’t have any experience…. I had nothing,” she recalled. “All I had was a passion in my heart to make sure that another child never said they didn’t want to play with a doll that looked like them.”

However, she did have a background and mindset that fed the seed toward her success.

Williams was the first African American female to earn a Ph.D. in Supply Chain Logistics and Marketing from Ohio State University. She went on to become the highest-ranking professor in her field.


Positively Perfect

In 2009, Williams created the company’s first collection of baby dolls – Positively Perfect Dolls. The collection started with just two African American dolls and has now grown to over 65 dolls representing Black, Brown, mixed and blended children.

“The child, as they’re playing with the doll, they will see themselves reflected back, and they’d begin to dream the impossible dream, if you will. And they’ll be able to see what they can do as they relate to their doll,” she said.

As time passed, Williams noticed older children having issues with self-esteem. She recalled reading that African American girls complained that they weighed too much. She also referenced an article where a young Latino girl committed suicide because of her weight. This led to the creation of the self-titled collection – The Fresh Dolls.

“We started creating The Fresh Dolls, and we made sure they had fuller figures. They’re not a size zero,” she said. “But we wanted to highlight everything that’s special about being a woman or young girl of color.”

The company is unique in that they offer dolls with one-of-a-kind faces, custom blended skin tones, full lips, authentic facial features, and hairstyles that include natural hair textures, braids, afros, afro-puffs, wavy and curly styles.

“The idea is that they see themselves reflected back, and it has them to love themselves, love their skin tone, love their hair, love their bodies, and dream, by playing with that doll, bending and moving arms and imagining it’s something, they begin to see what they can become,” she explained.


Keeping if fresh

In addition to the Positively Perfect Doll and The Fresh Doll collections, Williams introduced the Fresh Fairies collection this holiday season, which includes multi-cultural, three-inch dolls. She also introduced the Fresh Cuddles collections.

The company did not forget about young boys with its Fresh Squad collection.

“I wanted to make sure our young men, our kings, were feeling empowered and they look masculine to represent the beauty, the power and the chivalry in our community,” she said. “I wanted people to see the men that I see in my life and in my community, which is not always reflected in the news media.”

In partnership with L.L. Cool J, Williams created the Rock the Bells collection, and her most recent collaboration with Marvel Studios for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever led to the creation of the Fresh Fierce collection, which features designs of the characters Shuri, Okoye and Nakia.

Williams also explained that during this holiday season, the company is doing “Dr. Lisa’s Season of Giving,” where the company is giving away gifts for mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles and all family members, every week. There is no purchase required to enter. For more details and entry requirements, visit the company’s Instagram @thefreshdolls.

“We are all about uplifting and inspiring our community,” she concluded.

The collections can be purchased on the company’s website and at large retailers such as Walmart, Target, Family Dollar, Macy’s, Burlington, Walgreens and Kroger.




Mollie Finch Belt is the Publisher and Chief Executive Officer of The Dallas Examiner. She attended elementary school in Tuskegee, Ala.; Cambridge, Mass.; and Dallas, Texas. In 1961, she graduated from...

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