On the Dec. 29 episode, the Chaminade-Julienne graduate became a 21-day winner, overtaking the long-standing streak of 20 games set by Julia Collins in 2014. She goes into tonight’s episode as a 23-day champion with a total of $855,600.
“It still doesn’t feel real in a lot of ways,” said Schneider, an engineering manager from Oakland, California. “Julia, along with many of the other great champions, is somebody I was so impressed by when I watched her at home. So, it’s strange to think of myself in her company. But it’s a wonderful feeling as well. The idea that there are people at home, and especially women or LGBTQ+ people, watching me with the same admiration I felt for Julia is something I’ll always be proud of.”
Schneider, the first transgender “Jeopardy!” contestant to qualify for the show’s Tournament of Champions, also hopes her winning streak, filmed last fall and first broadcast Nov. 17, will continue to inspire women to keep reaching for greater.
“What will feel even better is someday seeing many more women atop the all-time leaderboard,” she said. “There are so many forces in our society that push women away from this type of intellectual achievement. So, anything I can do to counteract that in my own small way would be a wonderful legacy to have.”
Schneider’s impressive reign remains must-see TV and is not without suspense. In fact, the Dec. 30 episode’s Final Jeopardy! round was an absolute nailbiter, proving how volatile the game can be for even the most gifted players.
She can be seen on “Jeopardy!” weeknights at 7:30 p.m. on WDTN Channel 2.