“Zonta” is derived from a Lakhota word meaning honest and trustworthy. (Lakhota (Teton Dakota), a language of the Native-American Sioux peoples) It was adopted in 1919 to symbolize the combined qualities of honesty and trust, inspiration and the ability to work together for service and world understanding. The emblem is not simply a decorative design. It is an adaptation and composite of several Sioux Indian symbols which when superimposed take on a special significance for Zontians.

Zonta Logo

The Zonta Emblem


What appears to be the letter “Z” is actually the Sioux symbol for “ray of light,” “sunshine” or “flash of radiance”- and so “inspiration.”


This Sioux symbol means “to band together for a purpose” or “to stand together”- in a word, “loyalty.”


This symbol is the Sioux way of saying “to carry together.”


This symbol is the Sioux symbol for “shelter.” An indoor organization. 


The square is neither exclusively Sioux, nor is it exclusively Native American. It is the symbol for “honesty” and “trust.”


This composed symbol became Zonta’s emblem, signifying a group of successful business executives and professionals who are loyal, honest, and trustworthy, inspired to advance the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy.


During the 1996-1998 Biennium, the Zonta International Board voted to have the words “Zonta International” incorporated into the emblem to standardize its appearance and enhance recognition of Zonta International throughout the world.