Ogden City Council approves new city flag
OGDEN — Junction City now has a new symbol it can be proud of.
During its meeting on Tuesday, the Ogden City Council unanimously adopted a new city flag created by graphic designer Cody Hockin.
“It was humbling, to say the least,” Hockin told the Standard-Examiner. “There were a lot of good designs in there. … I had only seen the top 10 up to that point; they were all good designs and the concepts that drove them were valid and rich. It could’ve been anyone’s game. It could’ve been anyone’s flag. Truly, for me, it’s an honor because it’s kind of an extension of what I do and a representation of the city that I was born in and have been a part of and have participated in society.”
Brandon Garside, communications manager for the Ogden City Council, told the Standard-Examiner the contest had its beginnings nearly a year ago.
“In 2022 … Ogden Youth City Council was down at Local Officials Day (at the Utah Legislature) and participating in activities related to the Utah state flag,” he said. “Being down there, staff realized that Ogden doesn’t really have a flag. We have one, but it’s just been kind of put away after the city went through its rebranding in 2016. They realized of the 10 largest cities in the state, Ogden was the only one that really didn’t have a flag.”
Hockin said the contest was a very fitting one for him to dive into.
“I’d heard about it from a friend that they were doing a contest,” he said. “By trade, I am a graphic designer. I work with small businesses and I design brand identities and develop brand strategy for small businesses. So it’s right up my alley with what I do for work and for business.”
He said a sense of pride in the city also drew him to contribute.
“I was born in Ogden, grew up in Ogden and when I heard about the contest and that they were still accepting submissions, I decided I would try my hand at it just for fun because I thought it would be cool to have some sort of imprint on the city I’ve been a part of,” he said.
The competition saw a total of 215 submissions with 81 coming from area students. The Design Review Committee — made up of city officials and representatives from the Ogden Downtown Alliance, Visit Ogden and area businesses — periodically narrowed the list down from 215 until they had 10 contenders.
“Those 10 choices were then forwarded to the Ogden City Council,” Garside said. “From those 10 choices, the council ranked their top five. We then narrowed it down to three and the council wanted to hear again from the Design Review Committee and the Youth City Council of those top three which they would recommend. They also asked that of the Ogden City administration. The administration spoke with department directors to see which flag they would recommend. All three bodies recommended the design that came out on top in the end.”
A press release from the City of Ogden included Hockin’s description of the design.
“The focal point of this design centers on an iconic white mountain range that symbolizes the snowy Wasatch Mountains loved by Ogden residents. A dark blue triangle is centered below the tallest peak. This represents the individual or the family that is here in Ogden. The dark blue circle creates the letter ‘O’ for ‘Ogden.’ Symbolically an ‘O’ resembles community, connection, or a collection of people. The mountain range breaking outside the “O” signifies the welcoming and inclusive nature of the people that live in Ogden and the culture of tourism. Blue in flag design represents freedom and determination, with the white symbolizing a sense of peace and harmony.”
Hockin said he submitted two other designs along with the ultimate winner — one celebrating the city’s railroading history and a second celebrating the pioneer heritage of the city. He said with his extensive background in graphic design, it took around five to 10 hours to make the winning design.
Now that a new flag has been chosen, Garside said it will still be some time before the public can purchase one of their own.
“I hope it’s used far and wide, but we’ve got to cross some T’s and dot some I’s to do that,” he said. “Cody Hockin has been very understanding of that. We need to get a copyright release from him and we’re working on that. Then we’ll work with some flag maker to make it widely available for purchase.”
He added city officials are happy with how the contest turned out.
“This has been an incredible process and it’s been a privilege for me personally to be a part of it,” Garside said. “Hopefully this flag stands as a representation and symbol of Ogden for years to come and one people will learn to identify with Ogden as time goes by.”
Hockin received a $1,000 grand prize for winning the contest while the two runners-up received $750 each.
Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct the spelling of Brandon Garside, the Ogden City Council communications manager.