OKLAHOMA CITY — Nearly 15,000 Oklahomans voted for their favorite of eight bison-themed license plate designs in a recent online contest hosted by The Nature Conservancy.

“Four local design firms including Clover Partners, Cubic Creative, The Lowe Group, and Staplegun voluntarily created the beautiful artwork for the public to vote on,” said Mike Fuhr, State Director for The Nature Conservancy of Oklahoma. “There was one design that took the lead from the very start of voting and held its place in first through the end.”

With 3,405 votes, the “Pioneers of the Prairie” design by Chris Miller at Cubic Creative in Tulsa is the winning design selected by the public for a new Oklahoma specialty license plate benefiting The Nature Conservancy of Oklahoma.

“We are proud to honor Oklahoma’s most iconic animal by submitting this design as a new specialty license plate for Oklahomans to choose from. An etched bison silhouette is featured with a sunset background that represents Oklahoma’s majestic prairies we all know and love. And the ‘Pioneers of the Prairie’ tagline says it all about this amazing animal,” said Fuhr.

“Cubic is extremely proud to have been given the opportunity to lend our design talent to the Bison License Plate Design Contest,” said Chris Miller, Senior Art Director for Cubic, Inc. “Our design is intended to celebrate the strength, majesty and roaming, pioneer spirit of the Oklahoma bison. We believe strongly in the work of The Nature Conservancy of Oklahoma in preserving the native landscapes of our state and nation’s mammal.”

Coming in second place with 2,978 votes was a design titled “Street Bison” by Scott Scrivner with Clover Partners in Oklahoma City.

The Nature Conservancy will submit the winning “Pioneers of the Prairie” to the Oklahoma Tax Commission. If approved, the plate will be available for pre-sale to the public for 180 days. If 500 plates are sold within that time frame, then the plate will go into production and be available at tag agencies statewide. The cost of this plate will be $38 with $20 from each plate benefiting the Conservancy’s conservation efforts in Oklahoma. The Conservancy aims to have the plate ready for pre-sale this fall.

“Great herds of bison once roamed the prairies of our nation, including Oklahoma,” said Fuhr. “And during this time of celebrating bison as our national mammal, we felt this would be a great opportunity to generate awareness about the important role bison play in maintaining Oklahoma’s native prairies.”

Because bison play a crucial role in maintaining grasslands, The Nature Conservancy manages 13 herds throughout North America including a herd of 2,500 at the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve.

Voting for the contest was held online Aug. 24 - Sept. 7.

Visit nature.org/okbison to learn more.