Eighth Grader Sofia Geelhood Wins
The Anne Frank Center USA’s Second National Essay Contest

The Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect is proud to announce that Sofia Geelhood has won the second Anne Frank Center USA National Essay Contest. As the winner, she will receive three round trip tickets, sponsored by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, for herself and two guests to Amsterdam. There she will receive a private tour of the Anne Frank House, where the young writer spent two years in hiding.

The contest was launched in 2014 for middle school students in honor of the National Day on Writing. After receiving hundreds of essays from students across the country, Sofia’s essay was selected for its individuality and vision. As she states in her essay, “It is not the words of Anne’s diary by themselves or the individual notes of my playing that really matter. Instead, it is the ideas expressed in them that work to call people to recognize each other’s differences and respect them. In this way, we can move on towards the goals of tolerance and justice.”

An 8th grader from Sherwood, AR, Sofia Geelhood has seen much of Eastern Europe by way of various family military station assignments. She states, “I’m thankful that I entered since the contest has caused me to think much more deeply about Anne and the events taking place during her lifetime. I am excited to walk through Anne’s house…to experience, in a small way, what her life was like.”

The Anne Frank Center USA was founded by Anne’s father, Otto Frank, the only member of her family to survive the war. It uses the diary and spirit of Anne Frank as unique tools to advance her legacy and to educate young people about the consequences of intolerance and the need to work toward a world based on mutual respect.

The Anne Frank Center USA expresses its deepest gratitude to KLM Royal Dutch Airlines for sponsoring the Grand Prize, as well to CitizenM Hotels for providing accommodations and The Anne Frank House, our oldest partner, for offering a private tour.

Read Sofia Geelhood’s Essay

Second Place
Alyssa Joshowitz
8th Grader, Yeshiva Girls School of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA
Read Alyssa’s Essay

Third Place
Maggie Alexander
8th Grader, St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School
Bartlett, TN
Read Maggie’s Essay

Fourth Place
Krithika Bharadwaj
7th Grader, Archimedean Middle Conservatory
Miami, FL
Read Krithika’s Essay

About KLM

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines was founded in 1919, making it the world’s oldest airline still operating under its original name. In 2004, Air France and KLM merged to form AIR FRANCE KLM. The merger produced the strongest European airline group based on two powerful brands and hubs – Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and Paris Charles de Gaulle. Retaining its own identity, the group focuses on three core businesses: passenger transport, cargo and aircraft maintenance.

In the Netherlands, KLM comprises the core of the KLM Group, which further includes KLM Cityhopper,transavia.com and Martinair. KLM serves all its destinations using a modern fleet and employs over 32,000 people around the world. KLM is a leader in the airline industry, offering reliable operations and customer-oriented products resulting from its policy of enthusiasm and sustainable innovation.

KLM is a member of the global SkyTeam airline alliance, offering customers an extensive worldwide network. Air France-KLM and its partners Delta Air Lines and Alitalia operate the biggest trans-Atlantic joint-venture with over 250 daily flights. KLM is a member of the global SkyTeam airline alliance, offering customers an extensive worldwide network. The KLM network connects the Netherlands to every important economic region in the world and, as such, serves as a powerful driver for the economy.

For more information visit www.klm.us, facebook.com/KLMUSA, and @KLM_US.