Wilton keeps Warriors name, removes Native American imagery in 'W' logo

WILTON — The high school sports teams are keeping their Warriors name, but the district is changing its logo to move away from Native American imagery, the superintendent said.

Superintendent of Schools Kevin Smith revealed the new design of the “W” logo for high school and the district’s public schools during the Board of Education meeting on Thursday.

“One of our goals,” Smith told the board, was to “remove the feathers from the lance” that can be seen in some of the district’s imagery, particularly its athletic logos.

The district and its sports team will retain the “Warrior” mascot name.

While there have been discussions for years about the high school’s logo and mascot, the logo change comes on the heels of a state decision this summer that would withhold funding to towns and school districts that continue to use Native American nicknames, mascots or imagery without approval from a recognized representative of the community.

While Wilton’s focus was partially on distancing itself from Native American imagery, it also was aimed at logo uniformity for the district and its athletic teams.

“One part of the issue was removing the Native American imagery,” Smith said. “The other goal was to standardize the logo.”

Smith said Wilton had been using various shades of blue and renditions of its signature “W” in logos produced across the district.

The superintendent said parent and longtime volunteer Dave Cote, a graphic designer, presented some options for approval.

“Frankly, he one-upped the work we did in house,” Smith said as he held up a few of the options Cote proposed. Smith said Cote’s renditions were “more modern” and were a “step beyond” and “better” than what the district had proposed.

Cote said Friday the reason he did it was “by no means a political statement by doing a logo without the arrow or feathers.”

“I wanted a clean ‘W,’” Cote said.

His interest in providing the new logo came from doing work with the Wilton PTA. In all of the PTA material, he said, the “W” was different. In fact, he said, around town “every sign is different, every ‘W’ is different and even every blue is different.”

Smith said with the help of Cote and J.R. Sherman, a resident involved with youth athletics in town, the banners surrounding Wilton High School’s athletic fields will be replaced to reflect the new logo.