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Photo credit: Anthony Pidgeon

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Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, Dr. Toy

About Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, Dr. Toy

Dr. Toy, Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, has been for many years one of the nation's and world’s leading experts on play, toys, and children's products. With 30 years of direct experience, Dr. Auerbach includes educationally oriented, developmental and skill building products from the best large and small companies in her four annual award programs. Many parents, teachers and toy buyers use Dr. Toy’s guidance in making selections.

Dr. Toy’s Smart Play/Smart Toys: How to Raise a Child with a High PQ* (*Play Quotient) by Educational Insights ( (first edition, St. Martin’s Press) is now also available at Barnes and Noble is a unique guide to play and child development. The book is also published internationally.

Her book, Toys for a Lifetime (FAO Schwarz/Rizzoli) focuses on classic toys and toys for the future. Her book, The Toy Chest, a classic, covers the evaluation and history of children's products.

Dr. Toy has written 15 books and many dozens of articles about play and toys for national and regional magazines and newspapers, has been featured as an expert in articles by others, and has been a featured guest on radio and television programs throughout the country and outside of the USA.

Dr. Toy’s Best Products Programs provide a unique, original, copyrighted review of children’s products. One program, Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Children's Products, was featured in Early Childhood News (1992-93) Family Circle (1986) Parenting Magazine (1987) King Features Syndicate, and every year since 1994 on Dr. Toy's Guide on the Internet is visited by over 80,000 visitors a day. Dr. Toy’s four annual programs include: Best Classic Toys, Best Vacation Products, 100 Best Children’s Products, and Smart Play Products of Excellence.

Teddy Bear Cartoon

Illustration Loel Barr

Dr. Auerbach in 1986 founded and served as director of the San Francisco International Toy Museum, the world’s first interactive toy museum. More than 50,000 children visited the museum between1986 and1990, when the Loma Prieta earthquake forced it to shut its doors. New toys and products, as well as historical collectibles, were a mainstay of this unique "hands on" museum.

Dr. Auerbach, an established speaker, consultant, and author, is trained in child psychology, education, special education, and child development. Dr. Auerbach has a well-earned title, "Dr. Toy", dating to her first assignment with "Creative Playthings" (1968) where she developed its first education marketing program. She approved the first grant for the Children's Television Workshop, "Sesame Street,” when she worked for the Commissioner of Education, where she reviewed reading programs throughout the country.

She established the first child care center for the children of federal employees, which has served for the last 30 years as the model for the entire federal government. She planned and developed a national $2.5 million R&D Program in child care for the Office of Economic Opportunity, Office of the President.

Before working for the federal government, Dr. Auerbach was a teacher and reading specialist in New York, Maryland, and Washington, DC. She was associated with Arena Stage Living Stage program bringing theatre skills to the classroom.

Dr. Auerbach has been a member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the largest professional organization in early childhood education for more than 25 years, and is a regular speaker at its annual conference and other professional and parent organizations. She is a member of ASTRA, ACA, IPA, ITRA, OMEP, TASP, TIA, and WIT.

Contact Information:

Dr. Stevanne Auerbach / Dr. Toy
268 Bush Street
San Francisco, California 94104 USA

510 540-0111 (main office)
510-540-0171 (fax)

Foreign Rights

Claude Choquette  

Media Contact

Angie Niehoff

Dr. Toy available for interviews, presentations and in-store book signings (toys, books, children's products, teacher and children's museum stores).

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