Lekotek and NAPPA Celebrate 10 Year Anniversary

Posted on November 24, 2015

CHICAGO, 2015 —For the past 10 years, the National Lekotek Center has joined together with the National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA) in their combined mission to get attention for the toys that they believe deserve recognition.

The partnership began in 2005 when NAPPA enlisted the nonprofit Lekotek as one of the qualified judges to review the large amount of toy submissions they receive each year. To ensure the best possible reviews, NAPPA has a team of independent expert judges to evaluate the submissions to children’s products (toys, games, apps, books, etc.) and parenting resources (apparel, fitness, beauty, etc.). Lekotek provides each product with a gold, silver or bronze award to be used as a shopping guide in local parenting magazines and websites.

“We appreciate all of the knowledge Lekotek brings to the judges table, and are so grateful to be able to be partners,” said Julie Kertes, general manager at NAPPA.

Lekotek’s toy review experience comes from their own initiative, AblePlay. The goal of AblePlay is to find toys that are beneficial for not only kids with special needs, but kids of all abilities. Every child meets milestones at different ages and stages, and AblePlay works to showcase the toys that are effective in promoting the essential skills needed to promote growth and development at AblePlay.org.

“Working with NAPPA is a partnership I really enjoy,” said Ahren Hoffman, manager of industry relations and partnerships at Lekotek, and judge for NAPPA. “NAPPA brings the toys, and we [Lekotek] bring together the expertise of staff, kids and families during evaluations.”

NAPPA puts together an awards list of the best toys each year from the independent expert judges and family testers. After every product has been tested, only the best products make the cut.

“Our partnership with NAPPA has been one that has been beneficial from day one,” said Jean Bailey, director at National Lekotek Center, “and we are always looking for more ways to partner with like-minded organizations that understand the value of toys and play.”


For more than 25 years, the National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA) has been the go-to resource for the best products for families. NAPPA’s team of independent, expert judges, along with family and child testers, select the most innovative, entertaining and educational products to be NAPPA Gold, Silver and Bronze winners. For more information, visit www.NAPPAawards.com.

About Lekotek

The National Lekotek Center is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting play for children of all abilities. Lekotek believes play is the way kids learn, develop skills and reach milestones. The Lekotek mission is to make the world of play accessible to all children, especially those who have special needs. For more information, visit www.lekotek.org.

About AblePlay

AblePlay™ is a toy rating system and website that provides comprehensive information on toys and play products for children of all abilities. AblePlay was created so parents, friends, family members, educators, therapists and others can make the best decisions when purchasing products for children in their lives, especially children with special needs. For more information, visit www.ableplay.org.