Some prominent “Jeopardy” winners include Larissa Kelly, Arthur Chu and Ken Jennings. As of 2015, all three contestants rank among the top-earning players featured on the quiz show.
Larissa Kelly holds the honor of being the highest-grossing female contestant featured on the show, earning $222,597 over six rounds of competition. A science fiction writer from Newton, Massachusetts, Kelly comes from a “Jeopardy”-obsessed family, with both her husband and sister having previously competed on the show. In addition to her record among female contestants, Kelly also broke Ken Jennings’ record for most winnings during the first five days of competition, with $179.797.
Arthur Chu made waves during his initial 2014 “Jeopardy” appearance, utilizing an unorthodox strategy that saw him frequently jump between categories in search of Daily Doubles. Though other contestants had previously made use of the tactic, Chu received criticism from many “Jeopardy” purists, who deemed the behavior unsportsmanlike. Chu took the criticism with good humor, eventually racking up $297,200 in earnings over 12 episodes.
Ken Jennings earned a staggering $2,520,700 over 72 episodes of competition. Jennings’ extensive trivia knowledge, genial demeanor and six months of appearances on “Jeopardy” made him a pop culture legend, and his run helped bring many new viewers to the show. After his eventual defeat, Jennings parlayed his fame into a writing career, publishing books on trivia.