Press Release: Local Designer Surprises Student Activists with Unique Medals of Honor

For Immediate Release
Contact: Amanda Crane /  / 802-236-3488

Local Designer Surprises Student Activists with Unique Medals of Honor

Last weekend West Pawlet designer Christine Glade attended the March for Our Lives rally at Main Street Park in Rutland and was so impressed by the youth-led event that she knew she wanted to give them each a medal. Literally.

As the creator of XIZOZU Medals of Honor, Glade felt after listening to the student organizers’ thoughtful and empowering speeches that each of them deserved to be recognized “for their willingness to stand up and do the necessary work to shape the future.”

“It’s an important thing for all people to get out and march for the issues we believe in,” Glade said. “It’s entirely different to be the ones who do the difficult and necessary work of mobilizing others. These students didn’t just show up. They did the hard and likely thankless tasks involved in coordinating such an impactful event. They researched and wrote speeches and songs. They motivated others.”

XIZOZU (pronounced she-zo-zoo) medals, Glade explained privately mark important and pivotal aspects of a person’s life, including their triumphs and traumas, using a unique alphabet that Glade designed. “They allow you to honor your whole journey, no matter what your path has included, and they allow you to do it in secret.” she said. There are two XIZOZU medals related to protests, one for marching in one, another for organizing one. These students are receiving the latter.

At the end of the rally Glade arranged with school superintendent Mary Maron to have each student presented with a medal. Each participant received a bronze XIZOZU keychain. “There are countless ways XIZOZU can be worn—as pendants or charms” Glade said, “but I chose to present them with keychains since these students do in fact hold the keys to all of our futures. And after what I saw at the rally, I’m pretty comfortable knowing that.”

Rutland High School Principal Bill Olsen thanked Glade for recognizing the students adding. “We are all inspired by them.”