Lucas Warren’s contagious smile could light up an entire room. That smile will soon grace magazines and social media on behalf of Gerber after it was announced on Wednesday he is the brand’s “Spokesbaby of the year”.
For the first time in its 91-year history, Gerber has chosen a child with Down Syndrome.
“Every year, we choose the baby who best exemplifies Gerber’s longstanding heritage of recognizing that every baby is a Gerber baby,” Bill Partyka, CEO and president of Gerber told the Today Show. “This year, Lucas is the perfect fit.”
“We’re hoping this will impact everyone — that it will shed a little bit of light on the special needs community and help more individuals with special needs be accepted and not limited,” dad Jason Warren said. “They have the potential to change the world, just like everybody else.”
Lucas’ mom Cortney told Today she entered the Gerber contest on a whim. He was picked from more than 140,000 entries for Gerber’s photo search contest – an initiative that began soon after the company was founded in 1927, as Gerber’s way of putting out the call for a baby to feature in its ads.
Lucas’ parents will get a $50,000 prize as part of he title and he will appear on Gerber’s social media channels and in their print ads through 2018.
“We hope this opportunity sheds light on the special needs community and educates people that with acceptance and support, individuals with special needs have the potential to change the world — just like our Lucas,” his mom said.
Gerber follows in the footsteps of many other brands who have been creating campaigns around children with special needs. Infantino has long been known for their inclusive campaigns as is OshKosh B’gosh and Fisher-Price.