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Legal eagles: Lawyers dominate the Great Grown Up Spelling Bee — again

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20 Nic Phillips and Courtney Davis at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Nic Phillips and Courtney Davis on the podium as moderators at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
2 Evan H. and Nicole Katz at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Evan H. Katz and Nicole Katz chair the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
21 Linda Marshall and Ben Wickert at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Linda Marshall and Ben Wickert take home top prize at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
4 Marita Fairbanks, from left, Y. Ping Sun, Sanford Criner, Susan Criner and Page Kempner at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Marita Fairbanks, from left, Y. Ping Sun, Sanford and Susan Criner and Page Kempner at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
14 Linsay and Jeremy Radcliffe at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Linsay and Jeremy Radcliffe at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
18 Holly and Steve Radom, from left, Courtney Davis and friend at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Holly and Steve Radom, from left, Courtney Davis and friend at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
15 Rachael and Jason Volz at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Rachael and Jason Volz at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
Alicia Elatassi, Yaneth Martell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Alicia Elatassi, left, and Yaneth Martell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
10 Danny and Isabel David at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Danny and Isabel David at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
13 John Blaisdell and Monica Hartland Blaisdell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
John Blaisdell and Monica Hartland Blaisdell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
11 Jack Christie, from left, Sheri Foreman Elder and Mike Laster at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
City Councilman Jack Christie, from left, Sheri Foreman Elder and City Councilman Mike Laster at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
12 Samantha and David Kennedy at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Samantha and David Kennedy at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
Carolyn Dorros, Chris Dorros at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Carolyn and Chris Dorros at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
5 Kim Tutcher, left, and Laurie Morian at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Kim Tutcher, left, and Laurie Morian at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
6 Will and Kate Stukenberg, from left, Gracie Cavnar and Nic Phillips at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Will and Kate Stukenberg, from left, Gracie Cavnar and Nic Phillips at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee. Photo by © Wilson Parish
20 Nic Phillips and Courtney Davis at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
2 Evan H. and Nicole Katz at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
21 Linda Marshall and Ben Wickert at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
4 Marita Fairbanks, from left, Y. Ping Sun, Sanford Criner, Susan Criner and Page Kempner at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
14 Linsay and Jeremy Radcliffe at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
18 Holly and Steve Radom, from left, Courtney Davis and friend at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
15 Rachael and Jason Volz at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Alicia Elatassi, Yaneth Martell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
10 Danny and Isabel David at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
13 John Blaisdell and Monica Hartland Blaisdell at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
11 Jack Christie, from left, Sheri Foreman Elder and Mike Laster at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
12 Samantha and David Kennedy at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
Carolyn Dorros, Chris Dorros at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
5 Kim Tutcher, left, and Laurie Morian at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014
6 Will and Kate Stukenberg, from left, Gracie Cavnar and Nic Phillips at the Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee January 2014

R-a-s-o-r-i-a-l That was the word that failed to stump Houston Bar Association team members Linda Marshall and Ben Wickert at the Houston Center for Literacy's Great Grown-Up Spelling Bee thereby catapulting the duo once again to top position. They won last year's competition as well, maintaining HBA's gold medal tradition.

Over the years, an HBA team has won 11 of the spelling bees.

It was a winning night all around at the historic Julia Ideson Library, as proceeds of almost $200,000 were the highest ever earned at the event, nearly 25 percent more than in 2013. No one could have been happier with that success than spelling bee chairs Nicole and Evan H. Katz. Of course, Houston Center for Literacy president and CEO Sheri Foreman Elder was all smiles.

Guaranteeing a spirited event, Houston Center for Literacy brought in New York-based comedian Courtney Davis of Upright Citizens Brigade to lead the spell-off. Joining her were CultureMap co-founder Nic Phillips and his former theater diction teacher from HSPVA, Bob Singleton. No need to guess who pronounced the words — it was the well-spoken Singleton.

Joining in support of the Center for Literacy and saluting the evening's honoree, H-E-B, were Houston Public Library director Rhea Lawson, Jeff Early, Ana Lee and Marc Jacobs, Vanessa and Tony Sanchez, Vanessa and Eduardo Sanchez, Monsour Taghdisi and Henry Richardson, Jennifer and Justin Segal, Susie and Sanford Criner, Isabel and Danny David and H-E-B's Cyndy Garza-Roberts.

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