A group of judges will decide which one of 40 contest entries received should become Sauk County government’s new official logo.

The Sauk County Board’s Economic Development Committee decided Monday that a special selection panel should include three of its seven members and three county department managers.

The panel is expected to make its pick prior to the March board meeting, when the selection will be certified. Entries will be judged on their relevance, originality, aesthetic quality and applicability. The winner stands to receive a $500 reward.

The Economic Development Committee decided to sponsor the contest after learning that several agencies use different versions of the county’s current logo.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the committee received a letter from retired Sauk County Conservationist Joe Van Berkel urging that the county finalize its current logo — which he said is widely recognized — rather than adopt a new one.

Van Berkel said in the early 1980s, a team of staff invested significant work into developing a logo that incorporated many components of the county. The general outline was agreed upon by county leaders, but never finalized.

“My suggestion would be to continue to use this logo as the foundation for any new initiative,” Van Berkel wrote in the letter. “Spend the award money on a finalized version. Feel free to make final tweaks that may better represent the diverse economy of Sauk County.”

Sauk County Administrative Coordinator Alene Kleczek Bolin said the selection committee could decide to go that route if it chooses.

County staff who were chosen to serve on the selection committee are Parks Director Matt Stieve; Conservation, Planning and Zoning Administrator Lisa Wilson; and Management Information Systems Director Steve Pate.

Three economic development committee members also volunteered to take part in the judging, including supervisors Andy Andrews and Andrea Lombard, both of Baraboo, and Board Chairnan Marty Krueger of Reedsburg, who chairs the committee.

A list provided to the committee only included 33 entrants. Kleczek Bolin said there were some who submitted multiple entries, and staff still were determining whether some entries met contest rules.

Follow Tim Damos on Twitter @timdamos

Reporter for the Baraboo News Republic.