By Meg Dickens
During the April 14 school board meeting, Johnson County Schools Secondary Supervisor Dr. Stephen Long presented a new longhorn logo to the board in compliance with the University of Texas’ cease and desist order. University of Texas lawyers from Pirkey Barber Lawfirm sent word on Tuesday, May 26, that the new design was officially approved.
Art teacher Tamuela Trivett designed the approved logo. According to Dr. Long, the new design is chunkier, the ears are more rounded, the snout is more narrow, and the horns face a different direction than the contested logo and Texas’ version. Johnson County Schools plans to trademark this new logo.
Johnson County Schools and the University of Texas agreed on a timetable to replace old versions of the logo throughout all schools using the contested logo. Logos on Johnson County websites and letterhead will be replaced before the end of 2021. Murals, signs, and uniforms will be replaced by the end of 2024. All versions of the contested logo, including the gym floor and football scoreboard, will be replaced by the end of 2029.
After The Tomahawk’s earlier article, locals have expressed opinions on the situation and the now approved logo. Many were bewildered by the University of Texas’ claim, citing that students chose the mascot many decades ago and declared that the entire debacle was petty. Others loved the idea of having something new specifically for Johnson County Schools and called the new logo “tough.” Johnson County Schools plans to trademark the new logo to avoid any similar problems in the future. In the end, it seems like Johnson County will benefit from having a more solid identity and a unified logo.
As Dr. Long said during the school board proposal, “This is actually a blessing in disguise because we need to get with a singular design and get it trademarked for ourselves.”
The Johnson County School Board holds monthly meetings at Central Office on the second Thursday of the month, starting at 6 p.m. In light of COVID-19, officials now live-stream these meetings on the Johnson County Schools, TN Video YouTube channel.