Always a Wolf—Alumnae Maya Wali-Richardson '11 and Kanchan Wali-Richardson '08
Posted 11/17/2020 06:48PM

Left photo: Maya (left) and Kanchan (right) in 2007.
Right photo: The sisters more recently (Kanchan on the left, Maya on the right).

By 2008, the middle and upper school athletics programs had begun to take shape, but there remained one crucial missing element: a new Wildwood Wolf! To enhance the athletics programs and bring some "Wolf Pride" to our community, Athletics Director Billy DuMone announced a school-wide contest to design the new Wildwood Wolf mascot. Two students, who just happened to be sisters, collaborated and created the winning design.

Maya Wali-Richardson '11, then in 9th grade, recruited her sister, Kanchan Wali-Richardson '08, an accomplished artist in 12th grade, to help her create a Wolf logo.

"Maya was always competitive and couldn’t pass up an opportunity to win a contest," the sisters said, when asked to reflect on the joint experience. "Kanchan got dragged along, but like any perfectionist artist, threw herself into the opportunity."

They continued jokingly, "Despite that at that time the girls soccer team would lose almost every game, we wanted to at least have a strong looking mascot." Maya found reference photos and came up with design details and Kanchan made their ideas into a reality. In quintessential Wildwood form it was a true collaboration! 

The Wildwood Wolf mascot.

Fast forward to 2020, that strong mascot has seen Wildwood through several league championships and alumni competing at the collegiate level. While it may strike fear in our competitors, Billy decided once again to reach out to the Wali-Richardson sisters with a new request: Could they design a more kid-friendly "Wolf Cub" to go along with their original Wildwood Wolf mascot for our younger Wolves to enjoy? Twelve years later, Kanchan, a graduate of art school in New York City, is now studying landscape architecture at Harvard, and Maya, a professional photographer, is now pursuing a mix of social work and photography in Los Angeles after studying politics and ethics of documentary photography. Despite the distance and time passed, both were over the moon to contribute again!

As the sisters noted, "This year, we wanted to give the elementary school a cute new friend to help them get through the challenges of this time." They spent an afternoon designing and collaborating again, with a beautiful result below. You can find this new logo on youth spirit wear in our updated spirit store (click here for a limited time coupon).

"Wildwood was a very special place to go to school," the sisters added. "We cherish the environment of critical thinking always balanced with play, fun, and creative freedom!"

Our thanks and appreciation to these two talented alumnae for creating our very own Wolf Pack, giving both our older and youngest Wolf pups something to howl about!

The new Wildwood Wolf Pup logo.