Gerber’s New Spokesbaby
When John and Meredith Slish submitted their daughter’s photo for the Gerber baby photo contest, they simply hoped their sweet baby Isa would make the judges smile—they aren’t sure why they felt so shocked to receive notification that Isa was a finalist.
“We entered her because we think she personifies the Gerber mission of a happy, fun baby. Everyone who meets her falls in love with her. She has irresistibly contagious laughter.” The judges agreed, finding her “overwhelming happiness and bright, shining personality” a winning combination.
Gerber’s newest Spokesbaby is a girl of few words, but lots of smiles—even when she’s on national television. In May, the Slish family visited the set of the TODAY show, where the newscasters announced that Isa was the 2022 winner! Sitting on her mother’s lap, Isa took the announcement in stride as she gazed around the studio with interest.
“I would describe Isa as an observer,” John said. “Honestly, there was so much happening in that studio that wasn’t seen on camera, even I was distracted. She was taking it all in.”
Although Isa is unaware that she now holds the lofty title of Chief Growing Officer, her parents will ensure that she carries out her new duty of taste-testing new baby products. “She’ll be trying new baby foods and snacks, and we’ll let Gerber know her reactions,” Meredith said. “Currently she’s a fan of sweet potato puffs.”
Isa is now an advocate for the March of Dimes, whose mission is to lead the fight for the health of all moms and babies. Isa was born with a missing femur and fibula in her right leg. Meredith was just 18 weeks into her pregnancy when an ultrasound revealed the missing bones.
“Our doctor was wonderfully reassuring, and we’ve had an outpouring of love and support,” Meredith said “We immediately began educating ourselves about limb differences. We know that Isa will grow up differently than other children in all aspects, so we selected the name, Isa, which is a German word for strong-willed. That’s what we want for her.”
John and Meredith have exhibited strength themselves, as they adjust to the many changes that have occurred since last year when they found out that they were going to have Isa, their second daughter in addition to four-year-old, Temperance. Baby Isa arrived in September, and two months later, the family moved from Oklahoma City to Edmond. Now, the Slish family finds themselves in the national spotlight, with a rush of media opportunities. “We are excited to represent Oklahoma, and we hope Isa’s story can create greater inclusion for children like her,” Meredith said.
Although Isa has the responsibility of food-testing and modeling that is unique to most nine-month-old babies, the Gerber company has generously awarded the Slish family with sponsored products and a cash prize of $25,000, which the family intends to save for medical expenses. Additional money was donated to support the March of Dimes. “We are grateful to Gerber for celebrating all babies and choosing babies that represent the beauty and diversity of the population,” John said. “We hope Isa will raise awareness and help normalize limb differences in children.”
Based on the melting response of everyone who interacts with baby Isa, this Chief Growing Officer’s public relations skills are already well developed.
Visit gerber.com/photosearch to learn more about Isa’s journey.