Mason Creates Blue Ribbon Panel to Review Updated Mascot Designs

Posted: December 7, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

George Mason has created a blue ribbon panel to assess and evaluate proposed designs for the university’s mascot.

According to Christine LaPaille, vice president for university relations, the group has been formed as the next step in the process the university set up more than a year ago to determine whether Gunston, Mason’s mascot for the past 10 years, captures the “dynamic spirit of our institution and the patriotic roots of the founding father for whom we are named.”

“Our mascot needs to reflect where we are today as an institution, and that is what we are hoping to accomplish as we continue to move through this process,” LaPaille says.

The committee is composed of representatives of Mason’s primary constituencies: students, alumni, staff and faculty.

Appointees are: Bob Baker, associate professor and coordinator of the Sport Management program; Adam Brick, senior associate director of athletics for external relations; Rick Custer, director of Creative Services; Laurel Dunayer, costume shop director for the College of Visual and Performing Arts; Brian Dunbar, alumni chapter president for The Volgenau School of Information Technology and Engineering; Gene Granger, alumnus and law student; Tyron L.Johnson, Patriot Club advisory board member; Alissa Karton, assistant to the vice president of University Life; Patrick Mazur, alumnus, admissions counselor and former mascot; Aseel Al-Mudallal, student body president; Tennille Smith Parker, vice president for member involvement, George Mason University Alumni Association; and Nena Rogers, director of life skills for Intercollegiate Athletics.

“With the great success of our men’s basketball team this past spring, the visibility of Mason was unlike anything we had ever experienced. It also put the spotlight on our mascot as a university tradition that needs to carry through decades, not just a few years. I am confident this process will result in a George Mason University mascot that will make our students, alumni and fans proud,” says LaPaille.

LaPaille adds that several professional mascot designers have responded to a proposal that was issued through the Intercollegiate Athletics Department earlier this year. A few designers will be selected and asked to submit two designs to the committee for review — one, an updated look for the current Gunston character, and the second, an entirely new mascot that reflects the “patriot spirit in the 21st century.”

The committee will be asked to make a recommendation to the university later in the academic year.

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