Black History Month Contest Results!

Black History Month Contest Results!
Posted on 02/24/2022

If you’re looking for someone well-versed in African American history, you don’t have to look any further than the students at Louisa County Public Schools!

Louisa County Public Schools hosted its annual Black History Month Trivia Contest on Tuesday, February 27th at Louisa County Middle School. This year’s contest marked the sixth installment of the yearly tradition. Sixteen students from the division’s four elementary schools competed in the contest, with Thomas Jefferson Elementary School fifth-grader Paloma Ortiz taking home the championship trophy!

Ortiz’s victory came after an impressive – and highly competitive – performance by all sixteen of the students. In total, they competed for nearly an hour and during that time, they correctly answered 95 questions!

The LCPS Black History Month Trivia Contest debuted in 2019 thanks to the initiative and sponsorship of Kerry Wynn, a 2009 graduate of Louisa County High School and former NFL defensive lineman. The contest is an extension of his “Why Not Me? Foundation,” which provides cash prizes of $100, $75, and $50 each year for the top three finalists.

“This contest means a lot to me because it’s important for us to continuously highlight African American history in schools,” Wynn said. “To see these students display how much they’ve been taught in school and to see how much research they’ve done to gain that knowledge, it’s inspiring. I’m really proud of the work Louisa County Public Schools is doing to bring out the best in our students.”

The process of whittling the division competition down to the 16 finalists began in early February when all fifth-graders at LCPS were given a study guide and the option to take a 25-question online quiz. The top four scorers from each school were invited to the finale on Tuesday. 

For the first 75 questions of Tuesday’s competition, students fielded multiple-choice questions, having to choose the correct answer out of three options. In the second phase of the competition, students received questions in the format of true/false and either/or. The contest featured questions concerning a variety of topics, such as business, entertainment, sports, education, military, science, and more! To win, Ortiz correctly fielded questions for 12 consecutive rounds.

“Paloma’s performance was outstanding,” LCPS Superintendent Doug Straley said at the event’s conclusion. “You can tell that she studied hard and worked to earn the trophy! All of our students did a great job and I’m really proud of them.”

Straley also praised Wynn for his initiative and work to help organize the contest.

“We talk about citizenship a lot here at Louisa County Public Schools, and Kerry embodies that quality,” Straley said. “He’s a fantastic role model for our students and he is someone I know our entire community takes a lot of pride in. He continues to donate his time and effort to make this world a better place, and we’re really thankful to have him as a member of our team.”

Through her victory, Ortiz became the second champion to hail from Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, following in the footsteps of 2021 champion Jonah Brown. Brown, along with the 2023 champion, Driggs Johnson, and 2022 champion Katie Harper, both were in attendance at Tuesday’s contest.

As a result of Ortiz’s victory, Thomas Jefferson Elementary School will lay claim to the event’s official championship trophy for the next year, as the trophy rotates from school to school based on that year’s champion.

For this year’s competition, LCPS Director of Elementary Education Heather Spaid served as the official announcer. Complete photos from the competition can be found at the school division’s website, which is

1st Place - Paloma Ortiz (Thomas Jefferson Elementary School)

2nd Place - Callie Campos (Moss-Nuckols Elementary School)

3rd Place - Hampton Taylor (Trevilians Elementary School)

Other competitors:

Mason Himelright (TJES)

Devin Pleasants (JES)

Charlotte Hurtt (TES)

Jacob Alvis (JES)

Brandy Calles Hernandez (MNES)

Emmett Hoback (TES)

Lauren Peyton (JES)

Charles Elkins (MNES)

Brody Woodruff (TJES)

Caleb Lucas (TES)

Charlotte Clendenny (TJES)

Zaniya White (MNES)

Kali Belcher (JES)

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