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Paloma Soto-Castillo

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Paloma Soto-Castillo
S17 Paloma Soto-Castillo
Contestant Profile
Birth Date August 24, 1984 (1984-08-24) (age 31)
Hometown Downey, California
Occupation Student


Tribe(s) Kota
Placement 16/18
Challenge(s) Won 3
Vote(s) Against 7
Day(s) Lasted 9

Paloma Soto-Castillo is a contestant from Survivor: Gabon.


Paloma Soto-Castillo has been playing the social game her entire life, one of the skills necessary to succeed in the game of SURVIVOR. Her parents were both missionaries, causing her to move around a lot during her childhood. Growing up with this lifestyle taught her to adapt to any environment and she became a stronger person as a result.

Soto-Castillo was born in Chile and lived there for a large part of her life before moving to Tennessee, Virginia and then settling in California. One day, on a whim, she decided to leave everything behind and move to Kenya…alone, without any group or organization. She lived among the natives and wild animals for three months without any support from family and friends or any modern conveniences. After witnessing the people's suffering first-hand, she says it changed her life and she's certain she'll go back and help change their lives. Soto-Castillo is motivated to win SURVIVOR so she can open an orphanage or elementary school for the children of Kenya.

Soto-Catillo has a B.A. in communication studies from California State University, Long Beach and continues to go to school. She is currently working on her single subject teaching credential and works part time as a waitress. Her hobbies include traveling, camping and reading. In her free time, Paloma loves staying competitive and keeping her mind sharp by playing Texas Hold 'Em.

Soto-Castillo is single (at the time of filming). She currently lives in Downey, California with her Shitzu, Sam. Her birth date is August 24, 1984.

Survivor: Gabon

Paloma was chosen by Charlie Herschel to join the Kota tribe at the beginning of the game. She, along with Sugar Kiper, were detected as the weakest members of the tribe and were often sat out in challenges.

Early in the game, Paloma and Ace Gordon developed a dislike for each other. At the Day 7 Reward Challenge, Ace chose Paloma to hang on to the post. However, the Fang members easily overpowered her, leading to their first victory. Despite being assigned this position by Ace, Paloma was blamed entirely for the loss. When Kota lost the next Immunity Challenge, Paloma found herself on the chopping block and tried to run a campaign to vote out Ace. Despite her efforts, only Kelly voted with her, and Paloma was voted out 7-2.

Voting History

Paloma's Voting History
Episode Paloma's
Voted Against
1 Kota Tribe Immune
2 Kota Tribe Immune
3 Ace Ace, Bob, Charlie, Corinne,
Jacquie, Marcus, Sugar
Voted Off, Day 9


  • On January 9, 2010, Paloma attended Survivor's 10-year anniversary party along with all of her Gabon cast mates.
  • Paloma said in an interview in 2012 that she had married, having a son and currently living in Japan due to her husband's job in the Air Force. She now goes by Paloma Soto Bemis.


  • Paloma was the only woman voted out of Kota.
  • Paloma originally applied to be on The Amazing Race.
  • Paloma was the only woman from Survivor: Gabon to never be a member of the Fang tribe.
  • Paloma was the lowest placing member of Kota.


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