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Little Girl Who Went Viral for Loving Michelle Obama Dressed Up as Her Hero for Halloween

Why Global Citizens Should Care
Diverse representation is extremely important for people of color and other marginalized groups. When young black girls are able to see themselves in a positive light, it can inspire them to follow their dreams. Diversity creates a more equal place for everyone to succeed. You can help by taking action here.

Three-year-old Parker Curry went viral in March after an adorable picture of her standing in awe of a new portrait of Michelle Obama at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC.

When Parker’s mom asked her what she wanted to be for Halloween later in the year, the answer was obvious.

“Flat out. No hesitation. Half of a second later: ‘I want to be Michelle Obama,’ and I was like, whoa,” her mother, Jessica Curry, told BuzzFeed News. “I thought she was going to be like, ‘I want to be Elsa’ or some other character like that.”  

Alisha Welsh, who runs Magnolia Lake Children’s Clothing, offered to make a child-sized replica of Obama’s dress after Parker’s picture went viral, BuzzFeed reports. Curry told BuzzFeed that Parker thought the dress was perfect, and that Parker twirled and danced in the gown all night while trick-or-treating.

Take Action: Encourage girls & women to follow their dreams

Curry told CNN that Parker “believes Michelle Obama is a queen, and she wants to be a queen as well."

Curry has taken Parker to many museums, but she told CBS that she’d never seen Parker as enthralled in an exhibit as she was when she saw the first lady’s painting.

“In the world we live in today, I’m just trying to raise a little girl who has opportunities to see women who look like her doing great things,” said Curry.

The famous photo caught Michelle Obama’s attention, and Parker got to have a “dance party” with her and later joined her on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

“Parker talks about Michelle Obama every day. She lets people know every day that she is the one who met Michelle Obama and she is friends with Michelle Obama,” said Curry.

Media and other forms of representation are important for marginalized groups and people of color, who are often excluded from popular culture. Last year, about 10% of lifestyle magazine covers in the US and UK featured black models, according to a study by Zava. Only 22% of magazines showcased women of color on their covers during the year. Of the top 100 films in 2014, 17 had non-white lead or co-lead actors. For young black girls like Parker, it can be life-changing to encounter powerful and successful women of color such as Obama.

"As a female and as a girl of color, it's really important that I show her people who look like her that are doing amazing things and are making history so that she knows she can do it," Curry told CNN.

The former first lady went above and beyond mere representation by complimenting Parker’s costume and tweeting out encouragement to her biggest fan.

Read More: Watch this 106-year-old woman dance with joy upon meeting Obama

“You nailed the look, Parker!” Michelle Obama tweeted. “I love it!!!!”