LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – J.W. Sexton High School’s ‘Big Red’ mascot and branding took beginning steps towards changing Wednesday. A community input session was held at Sexton High School to hear thoughts on what the new mascot and branding should be.
This is all through an award by a Native American Heritage Fund grant, awarding $87,500 to help re-brand the logo and it’s something Sexton High School Principal Daniel Boggan wants the ‘Sexton Family’ to be a part of.
“It will be up to our graduates, our alumni, and our student body to make the change,” he said. “And if you’ve ever been offended before, for your culture, for what you believe in, you understand why we’re here.”
Roviettiea Lewis is from Lansing and is one of the Native Americans representing their group who attended the meeting. She said she tried to make a difference when she was younger and is still advocating today.
“Once I got my own email, oh man, I was out there looking up all the schools in Michigan that have ‘native’ mascots to tell them how offended I was,” Lewis said.
Some in attendance said they understand the reason for the change but don’t fully want to get rid of all ties with past years with a completely new name.
Sexton students and staff narrowed some choices down to a top five list ahead of this evening’s meeting. And school officials said they’re happy to take a step in a positive direction and are looking forward to what’s next.
“We’re proud to not be in a situation where we’re offending another culture and that’s why we’re making the change,” Boggan said.
As for the next steps, the top five listed mascots will be focused on the top three using a community survey. Officials tell 6 News it will become available after reviewing notes gathered from tonight’s meeting.
The top five:
‘Big Dawgs’ (#2)
‘Scorpions’ (#5 tie)
‘Vipers’ (#5 tie)