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Debbie Wanner

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Debbie Wanner

S34 Debbie Cast Photo1

S32 Debbie Wanner

Contestant Profile
Born: November 21, 1965 (1965-11-21) (age 51)[1]
Hometown: Reading, Pennsylvania
Occupation: Chemist
Survivor Career
Version: United States
Kaôh Rōng
Tribe(s): Chan Loh
Finish: 9/18
Alliance(s): Dara Women's Alliance
Challenge Wins: 7
Votes Against: 5
Days Lasted: 24
Game Changers
Tribe(s): Nuku
► Mana
► Nuku
Maku Maku
Finish: 11/20
Challenge Wins: 8
Votes Against: 6
Days Lasted: 26

Debra Donato "Debbie" Wanner is a contestant from Survivor: Kaôh Rōng and Survivor: Game Changers.

Throughout her time in Kaôh Rōng, Debbie was known for her eccentric personality and her comically varied professional history. She became an early power broker among her fellow Brains, and eventually joined up with an alliance of women after the merge. However, after several of her tribemates became uneasy about Debbie's reliability in the game, she found herself blindsided by her allies.

In Game Changers, Debbie was seen to be unstable, especially after an early explosion with Brad Culpepper. However, she used the others' perception of her to her advantage by downplaying her strategic acumen. She was thus able to orchestrate Ozzy Lusth's blindside, but shortly after, her overconfidence started to show, resulting in her own blindside.


Retrieved from

Name (Age): Debbie Wanner (49)
Tribe Designation: Brains
Current Residence: Reading, Penn.
Occupation: Chemist
Personal Claim to Fame: Being the first in my family to graduate college, learning was always valued, but not formal education. My family was/is dysfunctional, to put it mildly.
Inspiration in Life: I just adore Tia Torres of Pit Bulls and Parolees - talk about Survivors!
Hobbies: Working out (hiking and running), flying, snowmobiles, horses, boating, playing piano, rescuing Boston terriers and tortoises, juggling and reading, especially American and Roman history.
Pet Peeves: The idolization of garish, repugnant and supercilious people-like the Kardashians; pets as fashion accessories; apathy-don't just talk about doing it, do it and help make the world a better place.
3 Words to Describe You: Relentless, erudite and Spartan.
If You Could Have 3 Things on the Island What Would They Be and Why? Chanel No. 5 as I know how bad we will all smell, dental floss because I love clean teeth and it has multiple uses and a big stuffed Boston terrier.
SURVIVOR Contestant You Are Most Like: Coach. Period.
Reason for Being on SURVIVOR: Money, because poverty sucks and money equals power to a point. Also, I relish an adventure.
Why You Think You'll "Survive" SURVIVOR: I have military training in summer and winter survival, shelter building, fire making, food procurement, torture training and a superior will to survive. Plus, I'm fun too! I'm a card carrying member of the Reading Juggler's club, so I'll teach them how to juggle.

Why You Think You Will Be the Sole SURVIVOR: Like Hannibal Lecter, I have good manners and am pleasant company. However, that doesn't mean I won't scramble your brains. One million dollars means freedom, which is priceless to me. I'll give up, let go, surrender- when I'm dead![2]

Age: 51

Hometown: Reading, PA
Previously played on: Season 32: Brains Vs. Brawn Vs. Beauty, Finished 9th
How have you changed since the last time you played? For all the magic and mystery in playing Survivor, I'm more patently aware of how people can see and hear the exact same event/conversation and have widely different opinions/reactions/interpretations of said event. I'm making a concerted effort to view situations through other people's minds and eyes.
What skills do you bring to Survivor that will make you a useful member of the group and what skills have you been learning since you last played? I'm a worker around camp and was—and will—be a contributor; do what you can to make camp as hospitable as it can be, given the savagery of the environment and the fierce competition. When it comes to voting someone out at Tribal, I want to keep in mind just one thing: any name but mine will do just fine. What are you most proud of from the last time? For all its strange alchemy and upheavals of emotion, energy, and stomach, I enjoyed it all with exuberance and an ability to laugh and forgive myself and others.
What, if anything, do you most regret? Not making more of an effort to reach out to Scot and Jason. Everyone and anyone can be an ally, if only for one vote.

How will you play differently this time? Attempt to reach out to as many people as possible while still maintaining sincerity and decency. I know we are just playing a game, but attachments happen, and feelings really do get bruised. If I'm going to lie, I hope not to be too much of a wanker about it. Keep the lines of communication open to all and try not to let slights, injustices, real or imagined, get to me. Perhaps gain 10 lbs, as well; foraging for food often uses more energy than we got from finally eating it. Survivor is EXHAUSTING, mentally and physically, I'd like to keep a mental picture of many rescued animals, safe and happy, to remind me of why I'm playing again. [3]


Kaôh Rōng

It took a while for Debbie to settle in to her original tribe, but she successfully gathered the more quirky members Aubry, Neal, and Joe to align against the overconfident duo of Liz and Peter, resulting in the former's blindside on Day 8. In the Day 9 reward challenge, Debbie got overheated and needed medical attention. Although she was able to quickly recover, Cydney and Caleb also went down and the latter was evacuated. Following a swap at 13, Debbie and Neal found themselves in a struggle for power against Brawn for vital swing votes Beauty members Nick and Michelle. All plans were forced to be put on hold for a long time as Debbie's tribe won every immunity challenge after the swap and Nick's evacuation cancelled Tribal Council right after the merge. Nick's evacuation initially seemed to prompt Beauty to side with Brawn, but Cydney wanted to make a move against the men who were trying to control the game. The women plus Joe succeeded in voting out the overconfident Nick. Finally back in a power position, Debbie wanted to control her alliance. Aubry became frustrated with Debbie because not only did she fail to consider Scot or Jason might have an idol, but also that Julia was trying to play both sides. This frustration eventually lead to Aubry, Michele, Julia, and Cydney blindsiding Debbie, leaving the men in the dark. At Final Tribal Council, despite seeming closer to Aubry throughout the game, she voted for the eventual winner Michele.

Voting History

Debbie's Voting History
Episode Debbie's
Voted Against
1 Chan Loh Tribe Immune
2 Chan Loh Tribe Immune
3 Liz;
4 Chan Loh Tribe Immune
5 Chan Loh Tribe Immune
6 Chan Loh Tribe Immune
7 No Tribal Council
8 Nick Nick
9 Scot Aubry, Cydney,
Julia, Michele
Voted Off, Day 24
Voted for
Sole Survivor

^1 In The Circle of Life, the vote ended with a 2-2-2 tie between Aubry, Liz, and Peter, forcing a revote. Debbie did not change her vote on the revote.

Game Changers

Voting History

Debbie's Voting History
Episode Debbie's
Voted Against
1 Nuku Tribe Immune
2 Nuku Tribe Immune
3 Caleb -


5 Mana Tribe Immune
6 On Exile Island1
7 Jeff -
8 Hali -
9 Ozzy +
10 Andrea Andrea, Aubry, Cirie,
Michaela, Sarah, Zeke
Voted Off, Day 26
Voted For
Sole Survivor

^1 In Vote Early, Vote Often, Debbie was not placed on a tribe at the tribe switch and was sent to Exile Island, granting her immunity from Tribal Council.
^2 In There's a New Sheriff in Town (Part 2), Debbie used an Extra Vote advantage, allowing her to vote twice at Tribal Council.



Statistics of Debbie Wanner
Seasons competed: 2
Days lasted: 50
Challenge Wins
Tribal wins: 12
Individual wins: 3
Total wins: 15
Tribal Council
Total votes received: 11
Exile Island
Times exiled: 1
Redemption Island
Duels won: N/A
Days spent on Redemption Island: N/A
  • Debbie was the oldest woman to compete on both of her respective seasons.
  • A running gag of her first season consisted of the occupation descriptions in Debbie's chyron changing for every confessional, including "chemist," "civil air patrol captain," "electronics expert," "waitress," and "part-time model."[5][6]
  • Debbie lost 13 lbs. during her time in Kaôh Rōng.[7]
  • Both times Debbie competed, she became the third member of the jury.


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