With Superintendent's Approval, SEHS Mascot Now Officially "The Axe"

Feb 12, 2018

After more than 80 years, “The Axemen” has been officially axed as South Eugene High School’s mascot. KLCC’s Brian Bull reports.

Emblem outside South Eugene High School.
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

4-J Superintendent Gustavo Balderas has approved the recommendation from Principal Andy Dey that changes “The Axemen” to simply, “The Axe.”  This follows weeks of debate and surveying the South Eugene High community.

Julia Scher is a freshman who filed the complaint last year that “Axemen” was discriminatory towards women. From a gusty running track, Scher shares her reaction to the news.

Freshman athlete Julia Scher speaks out at a January 31, 2018 forum at SEHS in favor of eliminating the "Axemen".
Credit Brian Bull / KLCC

“I’m very excited because now I feel equal to my classmates," she tells KLCC.  

"And I think it’s a very first step towards full equality at our school, but this is just the breaking of the ice for many, many, girls at the school who were too afraid to speak out before.”

Backers of the “Axemen” mascot argued it maintained tradition, and disputed it was gender-exclusive.

In his recommendation, Dey says changing the team name won’t incur a significant cost.

The mascot will still portray two crossed axes.  The school colors – purple and white – also will stay.

Copyright 2018, KLCC.