Oct 3, 2022 - News

"Jeopardy!" legend Amy Schneider talks Tournament of Champions

Amy Schneider sits in a convertible during the SF Pride parade.

Amy Schneider (R) greets the crowd during the 52nd Annual San Francisco Pride Parade and Celebration on June 26. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

"Jeopardy!" champion Amy Schneider will grace TV viewers with her presence again this month at the Tournament of Champions, where 21 former contestants will compete for the grand prize of $250,000.

What's happening: Axios caught up with Schneider last week to discuss her upcoming appearance on "Jeopardy!" and what it's like representing the transgender community.

State of play: Schneider made history last season, winning $1.4 million in 40 consecutive games between November 2021 and January 2022.

  • She ranks second in consecutive games won behind Ken Jennings, who had a 74-game streak in 2004.
  • She became the first openly transgender person to make it to the Tournament of Champions and is the winningest woman contestant ever to play on "Jeopardy!"

What she's saying: Schneider has "really been looking forward to just getting on the stage again, and feeling the sort of rush that you get with that competition," she told Axios.

  • Going into the next tournament, she is most excited and nervous to play against Andrew He, the San Francisco-based contestant she beat in the regular season.
  • "I have to say, he kind of deserved to win that one," Schneider said of her comeback to beat He in Final Jeopardy! in 2021. Schneider was also eager to play against Matt Amodio, whose 38-game streak earned him $1.5 million in winnings.

Between the lines: Schneider has become an icon for the LGBTQ community and a Bay Area-legend, throwing out the first pitch at a SF Giants game and serving as SF Pride's grand marshal in June. She also had a day named after her in Oakland in September.

  • With the attention, comes some pressure to be this perfect representation of the LGBTQ community, she said.

"I think the most important part about it was opening that door in a lot of people's minds. All the stories I've heard about parents and grandparents sort of finally seeing the light on trans issues because they saw me on "Jeopardy!" … that's not going to be undone, regardless of what happens to me or my image."

What's next: Catch Schneider and He on "Jeopardy!'s" Tournament of Champions on Oct. 31.

  • Meanwhile, she hopes to do some advocacy work, focusing on aid and support for the Bay Area community.

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