American Girl unveils new astronaut doll ‘Luciana’ as 2018 Girl of the Year

MIDDLETON, Wisconsin — American Girl has announced Luciana Vega, the newest doll in American Girl’s long line of inspiring characters, as the 2018 Girl of the Year.

Officially launching on Monday, January 1, Luciana is said to “encourage girls to think about who they want to be and how they want to make their mark in the world.”

The new doll is described as an 11-year-old girl and aspiring astronaut who dreams of being the first person to go to Mars.

“We’re proud to introduce fans to American Girl’s 2018 Girl of the Year, Luciana Vega—a champion of STEM and a natural-born leader who puts her whole heart into making her dreams a reality,” says Katy Dickson, president of American Girl. “Luciana is a role model for today’s girls—empowering them to defy stereotypes, and embrace risks that will teach them about failure and success as they chart their own course in life—whatever the goal. For us, it’s all about building girls of strong character, and it’s why we’re continuing to encourage girls to lead change and embrace #charactercounts.”

Like other American Girl dolls, Luciana’s story is chronicled in a series of books, the first two of which are available now. 

To help ensure the accuracy of Luciana’s story and product line, American Girl says they worked with a four-member Advisory Board who were integral to Luciana’s development, including Dr. Ellen Stofan, former NASA Chief Scientist; Dr. Deborah Barnhart, CEO and Executive Director of the U.S. Space & Rocket Center; Dr. Megan McArthur Behnken, NASA Astronaut; and Maureen O’Brien, Manager of Strategic Alliances at NASA.

The Luciana collection will be available through American Girl’s catalogue, the American Girl website, and at all American Girl retail locations nationwide.