‘Survivor: South Pacific’ Pre-Game Interview: Dawn Meehan

Name: Dawn Meehan

Age: 41

Current Residence: South Jordan, Utah

Occupation: English Professor

Tribe: Savaii

Gordon Holmes: I understand you have a very diverse group of kids running around your house.
Dawn Meehan:
My children are all adopted and so they really are a diverse group. None of us look alike. And since we’re such a big family we resemble a lot of the dynamics of the “Survivor” game.
Holmes: Will your experience dealing with such a diverse group help you in the game?
Meehan: I see myself as a person who likes to bring people together and work to unify groups, probably because when your family is brought together with adoption you’re constantly trying to find what you have in common. So, in the first part of the game, before the merge, I’m going to be an asset for merging people.

Holmes: You were originally cast for “Survivor: Redemption Island.” What does it mean to get to come back and show them what they missed out on?
When I was cut from that season it would have been really easy for me to get discouraged and say, “It wasn’t meant to be.” But, for some reason I immediately thought, “Not this season, but next.” So I really spent the next year evaluating myself and my life and getting ready physically for it and auditioned again.

Holmes: Do you have any experience roughing it?
I’ve done a lot of camping. And I’ve been challenging myself physically. Working out six times a week; biking, swimming, doing all those things to get ready.

Holmes: How deceptive are you prepared to be?
I think the first time I auditioned I was a bit of a people pleaser. But once you’ve had that experience of thinking you’re going and having it removed, it’s really changed my view. I don’t think I’m going to have any trouble playing the game.

Holmes: You’ve been around the cast for a few days but haven’t been able to talk to them yet. Any first impressions?
Honestly, I still see myself as a fan so I’m excited to think about how everybody is going to play. There’s a young boy that looks like a rocket scientist…there’s some distinct personalities that it looks like it will be fun to get to know and then eventually get rid of.

Holmes: What are you going to do with that million dollars?
With six kids, a lot of plans for a million dollars. It can go a long way for them.

Survivor: South Pacific” premieres Wednesday, September 14, 2011 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.

More “Survivor” Fun: XFINITY TV sent Gordon Holmes into the heart of the South Pacific to get a first-hand look at the filming of the latest edition of “Survivor.” Be sure to check back for exclusive interviews with the returning All-Stars and host Jeff Probst, behind-the-scenes photos, and Gordon’s personal (and injury-filled) account of what it’s like to compete in an actual immunity challenge.

Any Questions about “Survivor: South Pacific”? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

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