‘Survivor’ Season 35 Cast: Meet the 2017 Contestants

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The 18 castaways competing on SURVIVOR this season, themed “Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers,” when the Emmy Award-winning series returns for its 35th season premiere.

Survivor is back for its 35th season, with a new batch of contestants and three tribes to fill. The theme this season is Heroes v. Healers v. Hustlers and the tribes are Levu (“Heroes”), Soko (“Healers”), and Yawa (“Hustlers”). Unlike some seasons in the past, the 2017 round of cast members are all new faces. For all the details on each of the cast members, read on below.


Alan Ball

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Alan Ball is 32 years old and he hails from Houston, Texas. At the beginning of his journey on the show, he starts off as part of the Levu tribe. He is an NFL player and he told CBS:

Playing football has fed my drive to compete physically for a long time. Of course there are mental aspects but I feel like this is competing mentally, physically, and strategically. I also want to win on my own merit—no coaches, no practice—just me winning outside of something I’ve done for years.

He has been in the NFL for nine years.


Patrick Bolton

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Bolton is a 24-year-old man from Auburn, Alabama and he is a member of the Yawa tribe this season.


Ben Driebergen

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Ben Driebergen is a part of the Levu tribe at the start of the season and he hails from Boise, Idaho. He is 34 years old and is a Marine when he isn’t on reality television. He believes his survival skills will aid him in his journey on the show.


Alexandrea “Ali” Elliott

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Elliott is 24 years old and she is a part of the Yawa tribe fresh out the gate this season. She comes from Los Angeles.


John Paul “JP” Hilsabeck

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Hilsabeck goes by “JP” and he is a 28-year-old man from Los Angeles. He starts out the season as part of the Levu tribe. Hilsabeck is a firefighter in real life and he tells CBS:

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As a firefighter, I feel that gives me an advantage. When we go on medical calls we have to pick apart the problem and figure out what’s wrong so we can treat the patient. I feel that with my athletic ability and personality, I will be the final Survivor!

In addition to being outgoing, Hilsabeck calls himself a romantic.


Chrissy Hofbeck

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Hofbeck is 46 years old and she is from Lebanon Township in New Jersey. Her designated tribe is Levu. Hofbeck works as an Actuary and she also enjoys adventure travel. She has brains as she graduated from Penn as a math major and also went to MIT.

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Jessica Johnston

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Jessica Johnston starts out on the Soko tribe. She is 29 years old and hails from Louisville, Kentucky, where she works as a Nurse Practitioner. She says she has a Type A personality, but says she is also mentally, as well as physically resilient.


Roark Luskin

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Roark Luskin is age 27 and hails from Santa Monica, California. Luskin’s tribe at the start of the season is the Soko tribe and she tells CBS that she feels she will win because:

With a few exceptions, people usually like me. I am great at compartmentalizing, so I’ll have the ability to form genuine connections with people, but I’m not one to lose sight of why I’m on Survivor—to be the winner.


Cole Medders

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Cole Medders is 24 years old and begins the season as part of the Soko tribe. Medders is from Little Rock, Arkansas and his job is a Wilderness Therapy Guide. He feels that winning Survivor would be the ultimate reward for an outdoorsman like his-self.


Joe Mena

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Mena is age 34 and he hails from Tolland, Connecticut. His designated tribe at the beginning of season 35 is the Soko tribe. In an interview with CBS, Mena said:

I’m well aware of my strengths and weaknesses. I’m not going to Survivor for vacation or fame. I’m not going to be away from my children for six weeks and come back empty handed. I can win this and I am confident I can.

Aside from being on Survivor, Mena works as a probation officer.


Simone Nguyen

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Simone Nguyen lives in New York City and she is 25 years old. Nguyen is part of the Yawa tribe on the show.


Ashley Nolan

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Ashley Nolan is 26 years old and she starts off the season on the Levu tribe. Nolan hails from Satellite Beach, Florida, where she works as a lifeguard. She describes herself to CBS as, “Impressive, tough, and hilarious.”


Devon Pinto

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Devon Pinto is age 23 and is from Solana Beach, California. Pinto begins Survivor as part of the Yawa tribe.


Katrina Radke

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Katrina Radke is 46 years old and is a part of the Levu tribe when Survivor starts its 35th season. Radke hails from Excelsior, Minnesota and she is actually an Olympian. She tells CBS that her athletic past will definitely help her in the competition, explaining that:

I know how to win. Just like I went from farm town girl to Olympic swimmer (swam for the USA 1985-1991, and 1988 Olympics), I am tenacious and great at convincing others to support me. They feel good about themselves around me and value me, thus being okay with me being the winner.

Radke says she loves to challenge herself and is fascinated by human dynamics.


Lauren Rimmer

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Rimmer is age 35 and is from Beaufort, North Carolina. She is a member of the Yawa tribe.


Ryan Ulrich

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Ryan Ulrich is 23 years old and is from North Arlington, New Jersey. He is a part of the Yawa tribe this season.


Desiree “Desi” Williams

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Williams is a 27-year-old from Newport News, Virginia and the tribe she starts out on is Soko. Williams is a physical therapist, who believes she is unbeatable in the competition. She told CBS:

Borrowing from my childhood love of puzzles and games or logic and strategy, my mental sharpness will be at its peak. A natural academician, I will arrive having not only watched, but studied the game. If you combine those traits with my will to win and my expertise in gaining feigned camaraderie, I’m nearly unbeatable.

Williams says that she is in great shape and has charm as well as wit.


Mike Zahalsky

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Mike Zahalsky is 43 years old and hails from Parkland, Florida. His tribe this season is the Soko tribe and he has been a super fan of the show since it first started. At home, Zahalsky works as a Urologist.