ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY — 13-year-old Sélah Sutton is an eighth grader at Macarthur Middle School in Anne Arundel County.
She’s been spelling since she was three years old.
She won multiple spelling bee's and this year Sutton will represent Anne Arundel County in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
The eighth grader says her motivation came from a story she heard about her grandfather's college roommate being a segregated black spelling bee winner at Knoxville College in Tennessee.
His name is Ronald E. Damper, and he went on to own Damron Corporation, a company that supplies tea to Mcdonald's nationwide.
"It was something I found interesting. It's inspiring to see like this person who looks like me doing influential things. If I win, I can show other people who look like me that they too can do stuff like this," said Sutton.
The 13-year-old says she has been diligently preparing and is ready to take her spelling skills to another level, and with the help of her family they believe she can do it.
"We tell Sélah that her name means “Listen to God “, she has been given a gift that she can share with others and use her intelligence to respect the trails of those that came before," said Sélah's mother, Renee Cort.
The Scripps National Spelling Bee will take place on May 31, 2022-June 2, 2022 at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center at the National Harbor.