Photograph by Rebecca Hale
Since the first National Geography Bee in 1989, millions of students have competed each year for a U.S. $25,000 college scholarship and the honor of being national champion.
The champions have come from diverse backgrounds—ranging from large cities to family farms. They have had varied interests and today are pursuing different educational paths. Among their shared characteristics are the desire to excel and an inherent curiosity about geography and the world around them.
On April 9, 2010 about 100 fourth to eighth graders in each of the 50 states, D.C., U.S. territories and Department of Defense Dependents Schools faced off during the National Geographic State Geography Bees.
The 54 winners listed below will be competing at the May 25-26 championship in Washington, D.C. Also available:
2010 NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC BEE STATE WINNERS
James Niiler, 6th Grade, Rock Quarry Middle School, Tuscaloosa
Nathan Swan, 7th Grade, Interior Distance Education of Alaska - Anchorage
Arun Yadav, 5th Grade, Greenbrier Elementary School, Glendale
Grant Baker, 8th Grade, Alma Middle School, Alma
Jorge Asenjo, 8th Grade, Academia del Perpetuo Socorro, San Juan
Alek Venturino, 8th Grade, Charlotte Wood Middle School, Danville
Isabella Contolini, 6th Grade, Red Rocks Elementary School, Morrison
Darius Mostaghimi, 8th Grade, Walter C. Polson Middle School, Madison
Varun Wadhwa, 7th Grade, The Independence School, Newark
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE DEPENDENTS SCHOOLS
William Miller, 7th Grade, Heidelberg Middle School, Heidelberg, Germany
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
Matthew Wilson, 5th Grade, Blessed Sacrament School
Aadith Moorthy, 8th Grade, Palm Harbor Middle School, Palm Harbor
Pranav Bhandarkar, 8th Grade, Malcom Bridge Middle School, Bogart
Alexander Fager, 8th Grade, Our Savior Lutheran School, Aiea
Karthik Mouli, 6th Grade, Hillside Junior High School, Boise
Anton Karpovich, 8th Grade, Walter R. Sundling Junior High School, Palatine
Ian Markham, 8th Grade, Nativity of Our Savior Catholic School, Portage
Johannes Gassman, 7th Grade, Ames Homeschool Assistance Program, Ames
Stefan Petrovic, 6th Grade, Broken Arrow Elementary School, Lawrence
Nolan Phillips, 8th Grade, Montessori Middle School of Kentucky, Lexington
James Stoner, 6th Grade, Christian Brothers School, New Orleans
James Davis III, 8th Grade, Sabattus Central School, Sabattus
Thomas Naatz, 6th Grade, Norwood School, Bethesda
Abhinav Kurada, 6th Grade, Advanced Math and Science Academy, Marlborough
Jacob Tanner, 7th Grade, Saline Middle School, Saline
Gopi Ramanathan, 6th Grade, Sartell Middle School, Sartell
Mamadou Fadiga, 8th Grade, Margaret Green Junior High School, Cleveland
Joshua Vogel, 7th Grade, Trinity Lutheran School, Cape Girardeau
Erik Ellis, 8th Grade, Yellowstone County Home Educators, Hardin
Zebulon Cooper, 8th Grade, Prague Public School, Prague
Alexander Wade, 6th Grade, Davidson Academy, Reno
David Ferreira, 8th Grade, Amherst Middle School, Amherst
David Yin, 8th Grade, Thomas R. Grover Middle School, Princeton Junction
Joseph Couls, 7th Grade, Our Lady of the Annunciation School, Albuquerque
Richard Zhang, 8th Grade, Jericho Middle School, Jericho
Logan Shaut, 8th Grade, Blowing Rock Elementary School, Blowing Rock
Micah Mabin, 8th Grade, Wachter Middle School, Bismarck
Evan Nichols, 7th Grade, St. Hilary School, Fairlawn
Nicholas Payne, 8th Grade, Pioneer Junior High School, Waukomis
Samuel Coste, 7th Grade, Greater Salem Home Educators, Salem
Matteo Tanaka, 8th Grade, Bishop Baumgartner Memorial Catholic School, Guam
Jacob Zimmer, 7th Grade, James S. Wilson Middle School, Erie
Oliver Lucier, 8th Grade, Curtis Corner Middle School, Wakefield
Kelvin Davis, 6th Grade, Williston-Elko Middle School, Williston
Alex Kimn, 7th Grade, George S. Mickelson Middle School, Brookings
Simon Crow, 8th Grade, Robertsville Middle School, Oak Ridge
Tiné Valencic, 6th Grade, Colleyville Middle School, Colleyville
Anthony Cheng, 6th Grade, Peruvian Park Elementary School, Sandy
William Hodgson-Walker, 7th Grade, Charlotte Central School, Charlotte
James Stiff, 8th Grade, St. Mary's Catholic School, Richmond
Alec Sjoholm, 6th Grade, Terrace Park Elementary School, Mountlake Terrace
Andrew Braun, 8th Grade, Hurricane Middle School, Hurricane
Vansh Jain, 6th Grade, Minocqua-Hazelhurst-Lake Tomahawk Elementary School, Minocqua
Zachery Dubisz, 8th Grade, Star Valley Middle School, Afton
Fifty-four of the nation's brightest young geography whiz kids gathered in Washington, D.C., last spring to take part in the 26th annual National Geographic Bee.
For Teachers and Parents
Learn more about the new online registration process for qualifying schools: U.S. schools with any grade 4-8.
Every competition has rules—read ours, then let the fun begin!
Wondering how to register for the Bee or how to prepare? Our "Frequently Asked Questions" have the answers!
What's the best way for students to prepare for the Bee? Here are some tips from the National Geographic Bee.
Answer sample questions from the National Geographic Bee, and get ideas on how to look for clues within the questions that can help you figure out the right answers.
The latest from the National Geographic Store will help you prepare for the Bee.
More Travel Quizzes
Teachers can use these activities in the classroom to prepare students for the bee!
Simply memorizing terms and place locations can be tedious and even boring. One solution is to make the task fun with an atlas-based scavenger game.
The movement of people, goods, or ideas from one place to another is a process known as diffusion, which plays an important role in shaping the characteristics of where we live.
Springtime brings the possibility of extreme weather, including violent thunderstorms and tornadoes.