A Michigan financial specialist recently made history as the first openly transgender contestant to win the game show “Jeopardy!”
Kate Freeman appeared on two episodes of the popular game show wearing a transgender pride flag pin. She won Friday’s episode of the show and later returned for Monday’s episode where she was defeated, according to NBC News.
“I spent a lot of time learning about and reflecting on my gender identity in grad school, coming out as transgender and lesbian a few months before graduating,” Freeman told MLive in a recent interview. “I’m proud to be out and I know representation is important.”
Mazel tov to Kate Freeman on winning @Jeopardy tonight. I’m assuming this victory makes her the first openly trans person to win a game.
— Peter Fox (@thatpeterfox) December 12, 2020
Writer Peter Fox congratulated Freeman in a tweet, suggesting that she was the first openly trans person to win the game.
Two-time “Jeopardy!” winner Jennifer Marrow responded to the tweet clarifying that at least one other transgender person has been a contestant on the show.
“There is at least one other J! champ who has publicly spoken about being trans,” she wrote. “A multi-game winner in the 1990s, although she used a different name and pronouns during her run.”
There is at least one other J! champ who has publicly spoken about being trans, a multi-game winner in the 1990s, although she used a different name and pronouns during her run.
— Jennifer Morrow (@jenniferemorrow) December 12, 2020
Freeman said that her time on the show was “equal parts thrilling and nerve-wracking,” with the best part being getting to meet Alex Trebek.
“It really lived up to my childhood dreams of being on the show,” she said. “I was honored to be able to meet Alex before his passing.”