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Alyssa Padia Walles - Everything is Awesome!

What was your favorite toy or game as a child?

My favorite thing to do was to play with my imaginary friend…until one Christmas when I had to have the Crissy doll (her hair grew!) which was unusual because I didn’t typically play with dolls. I was ecstatic to see her on Christmas morning, but probably only played with her for an hour!

Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry?

I came at the industry in an unconventional way. During college, I had the best experience working at Disneyland one summer – and really wanted to work at the studio when I graduated from college. I was lucky enough to get a job in the direct marketing division of the Walt Disney Music Company, and my boss Sharon Eisen came up with the idea to create the catalog business (which is still running today). Very long story short – I was ambitious and impatient and didn’t last long at Disney. A couple of years later I landed another consumer products position, this time in home video at Hanna-Barbera. The experience gained marketing products to kids and their parents helped when I later I joined PlayStation in Europe. We initially had only two games for younger audiences, and I was able to find data to support the potential opportunity to promote these games more aggressively. I love creating new businesses and new categories within existing ones.

What advice would you give a young adult graduating from high school or college today?

Talk to people who are in jobs that sound interesting. Ask questions and do your homework when you have an interview.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I love working with young people – the rewarding part comes when they internalize the guidance, use it at work or in their job search and then succeed.

What and/or who inspires you?

I have been inspired by Lego (some friends and I even launched a site: after seeing the first Lego Movie)!

Where were you born?

I’m a So Cal girl, born and bred.

What do you read every day, and why?

The Skimm – have to try to keep up!

What is your favorite gadget, app or piece of software that helps you every day?

Love my phone, more for the camera than anything.

When is the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?

A documentary I saw this past weekend, California Typewriter.

Are you named after anyone?

My older sister had clothes from a label, Alyssa, and my mom liked it. Growing up, I was the only Alyssa!

Do you have any kiddos?

Yes, a 16-year old son.

Do you have any pets?

Yes, an Australian Shepherd

Do you have any guilty pleasures?

Reality television.

What’s your favorite cereal?

Cap’n Crunch

What’s the first thing you usually notice about people?

Are they smiling?

What is your eye color?


Do you prefer scary movies or happy endings?

Happy endings

Summer or Winter?

Living in LA, it’s always summer.

Hugs or Kisses?


What’s your favorite TV show?

Favorite movie of all time? Singin’ in the Rain

What’s the furthest you’ve ever been from home?

I’m fortunate enough to have traveled quite a bit over the years for work – furthest is probably Moscow, favorite is just about anywhere in Europe.

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