“It’s a piece of art, it’s not just a trophy,” Lisa Summers, Secretary for the Oneida Nation said of the trophy athletes will vie for during the Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic.
The sculpture represents more than a golf tournament victory.
“It’s something that represents the Oneida Nation,” Summers said.
The trophy was designed by Oneida artist Scott Hill, and depicts Sky Woman, a major figure in the Oneida culture.
“What Sky Woman represents to us is our origins, our creation story,” Summers explained. “She was one of the primary life givers to all of creation in our stories.”
The trophy also depicts representations of the three primary clans for the Oneida Nation.
It’s a trophy that is more than just a trophy, awarded at a tournament that is about more than just golf.
“It’s not just another tournament,” Summers said. “It’s coming to an Indian Nation where we have the opportunity to share what we’ve been able to build and grow here with all the people around us and our greater community and with the world.”
Part of what they hope to share is the role of women in the Oneida Nation.
“We do hold women in a very different light here,” Summers said. “And we want to be sure that they receive the recognition that they deserve, we wanted to make sure that because our culture reflects that on a regular basis, that that was projected to the world.”
It’s a fitting message for a womens’ golf tournament.
“I love the idea of being able to empower women,” Summers said, “being able to have all of these wonderful ladies here for the tournament.”
And Summers says those ladies appreciate the meaning behind the trophy.
“They recognize the significance of the artwork that was completed for this trophy and how it was built,” she said.