Having joined forces with the U.S. Olympic Committee on select projects in recent years, Alex and Ani has been tapped to design the trophy for the Team USA Awards.
This will mark the first time the Team USA award will have been designed by an accessories company. Serena Williams, members of the World Cup-winning U.S. women’s soccer team and other elite athletes will be honored with them Thursday at an awards ceremony in Philadelphia.
Alex and Ani founder and chief executive officer Carolyn Rafaelian led the in-house design team that created the award, drawing inspiration from the Statue of Liberty’s torch.
Like the original material used for the national monument, the body of the torch in the Alex and Ani-designed award is made of copper. The award’s flame is plated in 14-karat gold and its base is made of blue sodalite stone, which is known as the “stone of athletes,” as it is believed to help with endurance and willpower. The company produced all 45 awards in its factory in Rhode Island to ensure Made in the USA status. Each honoree’s name will be etched on a plaque on his or her respective trophy.
Alex and Ani has an ongoing alliance with the USOC. Through a 2013 partnership, the Rhode Island-based company developed five charm bangles as part of its Team USA Winter Collection in advance of the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. A portion of the sales were used to support the USOC’s training for U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes and hopefuls. In the time since, the company has expanded its assortment of Team USA items, and will design a new Team USA collection that will debut in June before next year’s Summer Olympics.