Balu Natarajan poses with his National Spelling Bee championship trophy.


  • Title: Balu Natarajan
  • Date: 1985
  • Story: In 1985, Balu Natarajan became the first Indian American to win the National Spelling Bee, inspiring a whole generation of youth to study for and compete in spelling bees. Between 1999 and 2013, 11 Indian Americans won the Scripps National Spelling Bee. This is not just a story of individual or family effort. Indian Americans have started their own community-based and statewide spelling associations, paving the way for national achievements.
  • Rights: Courtesy of Balu Natarajan

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