Visualizing The Path to Premier for Aiken County Public Schools

05/11/2016 at 11:06 | Aiken County Public Schools

Visualizing The Path to Premier for Aiken County Public Schools  

Aiken County’s School Board unanimously approved a new logo for the District at tonight’s meeting. Approval of the District’s new mark concludes a year-long project of the Visual Identity Communications Subcommittee and propels the school system on its path forward.

Board Member Mr. Jeremy Mace has led the branding effort. Mace is co-founder and CEO of NewFire media and enjoys a successful career working with businesses to fulfill their goals by optimizing digital strategies and leveraging the power of online advertising platforms.

“I’m not an educator. My expertise is in business as an entrepreneur, marketer and designer,” Mace pointed out. “This was one area where I felt like I could give back to the school district.”

Prior to starting his own business and leading the marketing efforts of big-name clients such as Krystal Hamburgers, Taxslayer and a New York Times’ Best Selling Author, Mace worked as a pre-press manager, graphic artist, art director, online advertising expert and Amazon cover designer.

Former Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Everitt and Board Member Mr. Wesley Hightower, who also chairs the board’s Communications Committee, initiated the work for a new District brand prior to Everitt’s retirement in July 2015.

“With the addition of Jeremy on the board and with our new leadership also behind the effort, it felt like the timing was right,” Hightower commented.

Stakeholder feedback gathered through a survey supported Hightower and the committee’s vision for a new logo and work on the extensive process began in spring 2015.

Throughout the last year, Mace and the subcommittee have utilized stakeholder feedback to create and meticulously hone a number of logo concepts.

The final three designs were presented to the Board, teachers and employees, and parents and students on the Superintendent’s Advisory Councils. All weighed in on their favorite.

The final three concepts received considerable favor among the 1,873 survey respondents. The winning design had a very slim margin of victory of only 32 votes.

The District’s new mark incorporates a nod to the school system’s history in keeping with a similar color scheme while presenting traditional scholastic elements in a fresh new way.

Mace’s professional design services and the work to meticulously hone the final concepts would have cost the District upwards of $5,000. The donation of Mace’s time and talent allows for a responsible, cost-conscious update that will enhance the District’s image.

“We want to portray a professional appearance as new families move to our area and consider where to buy their homes and send their children to school,” District Superintendent Dr. Sean Alford commented. “Professional branding will also enhance our recruitment efforts, allowing us to attract the best new talent to our schools.”

Following Board Approval, the District’s Communications Department sent out e-mail signature instructions to its 3,350 employees.

Initially, not much will change with the District’s brand for this school year. However, as employees update and replace materials and the District updates its website platform this summer, the new mark, which incorporates the eternal flame of education to signify a passion for learning and dedication to students, will slowly roll itself out and lead the district on its path to premier.

Aiken County Public Schools’ new logo is a traditional, scholastic-themed design. It incorporates the eternal flame of education signifying the District’s never-ending passion for learning and a continued dedication to our students. The torch and book are traditional symbols for knowledge and wisdom and are presented in green as a nod to our District’s history and tradition. It also includes wording and font selections emphasizing the word “county” when referring to the District.