Debbie Sterling

Debbie Sterling

GoldieBlox, Inc.
San Francisco, CA
Debbie Sterling
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Debbie Sterling is the Founder and CEO of GoldieBlox, the award-winning children’s multimedia company disrupting the pink aisle in toy stores globally and challenging gender stereotypes with the world’s first girl engineer character.

Debbie is an engineer, entrepreneur, and one of the leaders in the movement toward empowering girls to build their confidence, dreams and ultimately, their futures. She was named TIME’s "Person of the Moment,” honored by the National Retail Foundation as one of 25 “People Shaping Retail’s Future,” and was recently added to Fortune Magazine’s prestigious “40 Under 40” list. In 2015, Debbie was inducted as a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship and honored by the National Women’s History Museum with a “Living Legacy” Award for her work to empower girls around the world. Debbie received her degree in Engineering at Stanford University in 2005. 



Stanford University, B.S. Engineering 2005
Answers by Debbie Sterling

I love to read, so as I started my entrepreneurial journey I found a couple of titles to be especially inspirational. I encourage anyone looking to start their own business to give them a read:

  • Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie
  • Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson 
  • BossyPants by Tina Fey
  • Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

Hi Joao,

It might sound crazy, but I never gave up because I believe that this is what I was born to do. I wake up every morning, so excited to tackle the next challenge of the day, all in the name of inspiring more girls and women to explore engineering. There have been (and continue to be) many obstacles along the way, but it is incredibly fulfilling to work on something I am so passionate about. As Steve Jobs put it in his speech at my 2005 Stanford Commencement, "never settle" until you find your passion.


Dear Genevieve,

I would suggest doing hands-on engineering activities with the girls so they can have fun playing with simple engineering principles. Sign up for our mailing list, the link is on the homepage of our website: Every week, we are sending out a newsletter that includes DIY engineering projects. Perhaps you could use this as inspiration?

Best of luck and kudos for taking the time to inspire little girls. Having a role model like you will be a life-changing experience for them.



Hi Melissa,

We are very interested in exploring how GoldieBlox could be used as a learning tool in the's on our to-do list this year. We'll be sharing highlights on our progress in our blog, Facebook, Twitter and mailing list updates. Subscribe to any or all of the above to stay in the loop! Links to all of them are on the homepage of our website:

Thanks so much for reaching out and for sharing your interest and passion for this important issue.

Oh, and congrats on your graduation...big milestone!



Dear Lauren,

I am so happy to hear you are interested in mechanical engineering! My job is a lot of fun. I invent construction toys with a focus on appealing to girls ages 4-9. I spend hours playing with kids to understand their needs, likes and play patterns. I prototype toy ideas using simple materials like clay, foam core, wood, ribbon and anything I can find around the house. I test my prototypes on kids to see how they respond and how they can be improved. Then, I take my designs and put them into computer-aided-drawings, getting the form and dimensions perfect so that they function well. Then, I work with manufacturing experts to produce the toys at a large scale so that thousands of girls around the world can enjoy them.