Ann Turner Cook, the original Gerber baby, celebrated her 90th birthday over the weekend.
Cook became the face of Gerber in 1928 when the baby food brand held a contest to find a face for an advertising campaign. When Cook’s neighbor, artist Dorothy Hope Smith, entered a charcoal sketch of Cook to the contest, she noted that she’d finish the drawing if she won.
Yet according to Gerber, the judges were so pleased with Smith’s entry that they “insisted that the simple illustration remain a sketch.” The illustration ended up becoming so popular that Gerber adopted it as its official trademark in 1931. 85 years later, the Gerber baby is still one of the most recognizable brand logos of all time and still appears on the brand’s packaging today.
While the identity of the Gerber baby was kept secret for many years, it was eventually revealed that Cook is the famous face of the brand. According to Gerber, she is now a mystery novelist and retired English teacher.