Special Olympics Athletes Unite To Inspire and Design Original Logo for 2022 Special Olympics USA Games

Creative Partner, Publicis Seattle, Leads Athlete-Inspired Initiative. Academy Award Winning Iranian-American filmmaker Rayka Zehtabchi Directs Mini-Documentary Film During Workshop
Special Olympics USA Games Orlando 2020 logo

Orlando, FL – August 8, 2019: The 2022 Special Olympics USA Games Organizing Committee unveiled its original and unprecedented logo for the 2022 USA Games which was, for the first time in the organization’s 50-year history, inspired and designed by nine artistic and talented Special Olympics athletes. Athletes from across the country gathered for a three-day workshop in Orlando, where they joined forces with professional designers from creative ad agency partner, Publicis Seattle, to provide the vision for the 2022 USA Games logo, as well as the primary color palette that explodes with life. The mark represents the natural elements of Florida culminating in a fiery spark of the Special Olympics spirit.

“It is an honor to be part of the team that created the logo. This was so important to us because Special Olympics is such an important part of our lives. We are proud of the logo and hope it can be an inspiration to society.”
Lee Savage, Special Olympics athlete

“This logo tells a story of how a combined passion for sports, perseverance and art can literally come to life on a blank canvas,” said Joe Dzaluk, President & CEO of the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games. “These incredible athletes used their unique talents to inspire and design an iconic image for the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games brand, and it proved to be more meaningful than any of us could have ever imagined.”

Additionally, Iranian-American filmmaker Rayka Zehtabchi, who is best known for her 2018 Academy Award-winning documentary short Period. End of Sentence., directed a mini documentary that was filmed during the three-day workshop. This unique approach to developing the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games logo served as the perfect platform to unlock the creativity and confidence of the Special Olympics athletes. Zehtabchi’s film beautifully captures the positive impact of the process and the undeniable spirit and talent of the athletes.

Special Olympics Rayka Zehtabchi 2020 USA Games Mini Documentary

Melissa Nelson, President, Publicis Seattle, commented, “We’ve been privileged to partner with Special Olympics for the 2018 Games and now again for the 2022 Games. This collaboration inspires our people to do what they do best: explore exciting new creative thinking and opportunities.

Pete Kearney, Executive Creative Director, Publicis Seattle, added, “We’ve always felt this was never our logo to create—it was the athletes’. We embraced that idea and empowered the talent, vision and passion of these spirited artists. We’re in the business of changing perceptions, and with this work, we’ve shown that creative power exists in each and every one of us.”

The nine athletes included:
Aarushi Pratap of Special Olympics Florida (Fashion Design)
Andrew Weatherly of Special Olympics New Jersey (Abstract Painting)
Caroline Shin of Special Olympics Florida (Web Design)
Coby Fineran of Special Olympics Iowa (Tattoo Artist)
Haley Waggoner of Special Olympics Nebraska (Cake Decorating)
Lee Savage of Special Olympics Florida (Drawing)
Mariah Gilbert of Special Olympics Washington (Drawing)
Marta Páramo of Special Olympics Florida (Painting)
Patrice Jetter of Special Olympics New Jersey (Graphic Design)

About 2022 Special Olympics USA Games

Orlando was officially announced as the host city for the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games in May 2018. Taking place from June 5-11, 2022, more than 4,000 athletes, 10,000 volunteers, 1,500 coaches and 125,000 fans from all 50 states and the District of Columbia will travel to unite and participate in one of the world’s most cherished sporting events. The Games will be comprised of as many as 20 Olympic-type team and individual sports and will take place at the 220-acre ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort, providing a premier venue for amateur sports in the nation. To learn more about the 2022 Special Olympics USA Games, please visit www.2022USAGames.org and follow the organization on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

About Publicis Worldwide

Publicis Worldwide is a global creative agency network enabling our clients to Lead The Change in their own marketing and business transformation. We do this through a combination of strategy, creativity and technology. With over 16,000 employees in 110 countries, clients include Adidas Sports, Axa, Carrefour, Cartier, Citi, Diesel, Emirates, Heineken, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, L'Oréal, Nestlé, Orange, P&G, Renault and Sanofi.

Publicis Worldwide is part of Publicis Communications, the creative agency network solution hub within Publicis Groupe.

About Special Olympics

Special Olympics is a global inclusion movement using sport, health, education and leadership programs every day around the world to end discrimination against and empower people with intellectual disabilities. Founded in 1968, and celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 6 million athletes and Unified Sports partners in over 190 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 100,000 games and competitions throughout the year. Special Olympics is supported by individuals, foundations and partners, including Bank of America, the Christmas Records Trust, The Coca-Cola Company, ESPN, Essilor Vision Foundation, the Golisano Foundation, IKEA Foundation, the Lane Family, the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, Lions Clubs International, Safilo Group, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, TOYOTA, United Airlines, and The Walt Disney Company. Click here for a full list of partners. Engage with us on: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and our blog on Medium. Learn more at www.SpecialOlympics.org.

Media Contact
Special Olympics
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