Reality TV competition series Survivor has been going strong now for 38 seasons, with the latest, Edge of Extinction, wrapping up in May 2019. And while we’ve seen more than three-dozen winners, these folks aren’t necessarily the richest of the bunch. Their net worth is at least $1 million, minus taxes, of course. Or at least it was at one point.
But some past players started out much richer anyway or at least became so after they appeared on the show. Some continued working in the entertainment business, others moved on to other industries where they found another way to earn their cool million (or more.)
With that said, here are 10 past players who all have a pretty healthy net worth, according to CelebrityNetWorth.com, despite all but two of them actually winning the show.
10 Richard Hatch - $200,000
The very first Survivor winner in Survivor: Borneo, and only one of two former winners to make this list, Hatch’s earnings have taken a hit due to his legal troubles, which includes a conviction for tax evasion, after which he served three years in jail, followed by another nine months five years later.
A notorious Survivor villain, he returned to Survivor for All-Stars in 2003 and also appeared on The Celebrity Apprentice in 2011.
He has formerly worked as an auto salesman, real estate agent, bartender, and in-corporate training and consulting, while also serving in the United States Army. It’s unclear what he does today.
9 Elisabeth Hasselbeck - $16 million
One of the most well-known past Survivor contestants, some even forget that she first appeared on the reality series under her maiden name of Filarski. After appearing on Survivor: The Australian Outback in 2001-02, where she placed fourth, Hasselbeck snagged an audition to replace Lisa Ling on The View, and the rest is history.
She remained the conservative voice on the daytime talk show panel for a decade, leaving in 2013 to co-host Fox & Friends. At the height of her career, she was bringing in a reported $3 million annually, which has contributed to much of her earnings.
She left Fox & Friends in 2015, stating that she wanted to spend more time with her family. She also has a line of gluten-free nutritional products under the NoGii brand.
8 Candace Smith - $1.5 million
Playing a decade ago on Survivor: Tocantins in 2009, Smith was a former beauty queen, having won Miss Ohio USA in 2003, and competing in the Miss USA pageant in 2013. Also a former Barker’s Beauty from The Price is Right, she has amassed a healthy sum from her acting and modeling work, as well as being a lawyer.
In 2014 and 2015, she starred in another reality series, The Millionaire Matchmaker, and worked as director of recruiting for the series. She has also appeared in a number of movies and in episodes of TV series' like Entourage, Joey, and Friday Night Lights. As a commercial real estate lawyer as well, she has plenty of sources of income these days.
7 Russell Hantz - $2 million
One of the most notorious villains on the series, Hantz played three times and was runner-up twice, first on Survivor: Samoa (2009) and second during Heroes vs. Villains; and placed 17th his third time playing on Redemption Island in 2011. Additionally, he appeared on the Australian Survivor: Champions vs. Contenders, where he was also voted out second.
Getting the runner-up prize twice came with a sizable cash prize, as Hantz did also win the Sprint Player of the Season award both times, receiving $100,000 for that honor.
Still, he has managed to surpass the million-dollar net worth mark on his own, through an oil company called Hantz Tankering Service, which he co-owns with his brother and father, as well as a bar he owns in Lafayette, LA called Bootleggers. He also starred with his brother Shawn on Flipped Off, a reality series for A&E that ran for a single season in 2012.
6 David Samson - $200 million
By far the wealthiest former Survivor player, Samson appeared on Survivor: Cagayan in 2014, though blink and you would have missed him as he was voted out first. But you likely know him more as the former president of the Major League Baseball (MLB) team, the Miami Marlins.
Marred with controversy, thanks in large part to his outspoken nature, he got his start in sports in 1999 as Executive Vice President of the Montreal Expos. It was he and his stepfather who finalized the deal to purchase the Miami Marlins, which moved the Expos to the U.S. and led to a lawsuit that was eventually thrown out.
He was reportedly fired in 2017, and while it’s unclear what he’s up to today, he’ll likely remain one of the wealthiest former Survivor players ever.
5 Jimmy Johnson - $40 million
A legendary former football coach then TV football analyst, Johnson began his career way back in 1965 as an assistant coach for Louisiana Tech University, then Oklahoma State University, and the University of Miami. He then went on to the NFL, to coach the Dallas Cowboys leading them to two consecutive wins. His final coaching job was as head coach of the Miami Dolphins.
He continues to work on TV, as an analyst for Fox NFL Sunday, the network’s pregame show. He has also made cameos on The Shield, Coach, and Waterboy, and as a pitchman for brands like Procter & Gamble. He owns a restaurant in Miami called Three Rings, and a bar and restaurant in Key Largo called JJ’s Big Chill, which also contribute to his hefty earnings.
So where does Survivor come in? Johnson joined the cast of the 21st season, Survivor: Nicaragua in 2010 after being a long-time fan of the show. He was supposed to appear on the 17th season, Survivor: Gabon, but failed the physical exam. When he finally made it on, he was the oldest contestant that season and was voted out third.
4 Brendan Synnott - $80 million
According to several sources (no data was available on CelebrityNetWorth.com), following his stint on Survivor, Synnott sold his granola company Bear Naked to Kellogg’s for a cool $80 million.
He appeared on Survivor: Tocantins, the 18th season, alongside Candace Smith, who is also on this list. At just 30 years old, he was eventually voted out seventh on Day 24, making him the first jury member.
His LinkedIn profile lists him as an entrepreneur, investor, and advisor, and as the CEO of a company called PACT Apparel since 2011, currently residing in the greater Denver area.
3 Jeff Kent - $40 million
Another already-celebrity at the time he appeared on the reality series, Kent is a retired baseball player who played for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1989, first for the minors and then the major league.
He appeared on Survivor: Philippines, the 25th season that aired in 2012, where he finished 10th.
He lives in Austin, TX with his wife and four children, and owns a 4,000-acre cattle ranch in Texas. He also owns the Lakecliff Country Club in Spicewood, TX and the Kent Powersports chain of motorcycle and ATV dealerships, which contribute to his growing income.
2 Cole Hamels - $60 million
Appearing on the sixth season of the series, Survivor: The Amazon in 2002, Hamels is a baseball pitcher who was drafted by the Phillies that same year, where he started in the minor leagues before moving on to the majors in 2006.
He spent much of his career with that team, after which he was traded to the Texas Rangers, then played with the Chicago Cubs since 2018.
He also runs The Hamels Foundation with his wife Heidi Strobel (also a Survivor player on that same season) that helps fund childhood programs in Philadelphia and Africa. In 2017, they donated their 32,000 square-foot mansion in Missouri to the Christian charity Camp Barnabas, which runs camps for kids with special needs and chronic illnesses.
1 'Boston' Rob Mariano - $1.3 million
Appearing on the series a record four times, he was on Survivor: Marquesas (2002), Survivor: All Stars (2004), Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains (2010), and Survivor: Redemption Island in 2011, when he finally won the top prize. He was the runner-up on All-Stars, getting that monetary prize, too.
Additionally, Mariano and his wife Amber Brkich, who won All-Stars (beating him for the top prize!) appeared on The Amazing Race together, both in season seven where they were the runners-up and on All-Stars.
He will serve as a mentor on the upcoming new season, Survivor: Island of the Idols. His wallet is padded through other ventures as well, including his own production company called Murlonio Productions and writing projects, including a rulebook of life lessons.