US baby girl named after KFC founder Colonel Sanders wins $15,000

A newborn baby girl in the United States is now US$11,000 (S$15,200) richer, after her parents gave her the same first name as KFC’s founder Colonel Sanders.

The American fast food chain announced little Harland Rose as the winner of its baby-naming contest on Twitter on Tuesday (Oct 30).

In a bid to revive the popularity of the late founder’s name, KFC said in August that the first family to have a child on Sept 9 and name their newborn Harland will get the money for the baby’s college tuition fund.

The US$11,000 prize money was a nod to the 11 different herbs and spices in KFC’s fried chicken.

Sept 9 marks what would have been Colonel Sanders’ 128th birthday.

On Tuesday, KFC tweeted: “I’m as pleased as pumpkin punch to announce the winner of our Baby Harland Naming Contest and the Harland who will be ushering in an all-new generation of Harlands, little Harland Rose.”

Harland Rose was born on Sept 9, weighing 8 pounds and 1 ounce (3.6kg) and measuring 21 inches (53cm), the fast food chain said.

It also included a photo of blue-eyed baby girl dressed in a floral dress with a bow on her head.

KFC US chief marketing officer Andrea Zahumensky said in a statement to Fox News: “Even though vintage names are making a comeback, our iconic founder’s name was dwindling in popularity, and we couldn’t just stand idly by and let that happen.”

She noted that the name Harland ranked 3,257th on the list of most popular US baby names last year. In 2018, it was 5,477th.

“We hope that this birthday celebration honours the Colonel and encourages the next generation of people aspiring to live the American dream,” the statement said.

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