The 15th annual National Adult Spelling Bee was hosted by Justin Rudd’s nonprofit Community Action Team at Bay Shore Church in Long Beach on March 8. Spellers came from as far away as Louisiana and Texas to compete in the bee, which lasted three and a half hours and 33 rounds. It was a Culver City High School senior, Cooper Komatsu (pictured above left), 17, who won by correctly spelling “schnorrer” and “tachyon” in the final rounds. Cooper will donate half of his $1,000 prize to Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., an environmental advocacy group headquartered in New York City. He also won last year’s National Adult Spelling Bee.
Second place went to Dean Alkhairym (second from left), a 14-year-old eighth grader from Newport Beach, after misspelling “telamon.” Third place went to Lindsey Kiser (second from right) from San Carlos, who misspelled “tetragrammaton” in round 28. Fourth place went to Mitch Powell (right) of Santa Ana, after he incorrectly spelled “boule” in round 21.
Other words spelled in final rounds included, “kapellmeister”, “chaetognath”, “cachinnate”, “chatoyant”, and “patagruelian.”
Kate Karp serves as the pronouncer for the bee. She won the National Adult Spelling Bee in its first year.