This 2001 ‘Survivor’ Alum Is Now a Biden-Appointed U.S. Attorney

Survivor the Australian Outback cast

CBS Cast of "Survivor: The Australian Outback" (2001).

To this day, the second season of “Survivor” is the show’s highest rated, and back when it aired in 2001 it was one of the most popular shows on television, with almost every member of the cast being skyrocketed to fame.

However, after their fifteen minutes of fame, many cast members more or less faded into obscurity, which is why many fans of modern-day “Survivor” may not know that one prominent castaway was recently tapped by President Joseph R. Biden to serve in the U.S. federal government.

Here’s what you need to know:


Nick Brown Is Now A U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington

Nicholas W Brown

U.S. Department of JusticeNicholas W. Brown’s official government portrait (2021).

In July 2021, Biden tapped Brown, who now goes formally by Nicholas W. Brown, to serve as U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington after the previous Attorney, Brian T. Moran, resigned. According to the Seattle Times, this came after Brown was recommended by Washington Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell in January 2021. On September 30, he was confirmed via voice vote in the U.S. Senate, and was sworn in a week later on October 7.

According to the United States Department of Justice, a U.S. Attorney is tasked with ensuring “that the laws be faithfully executed.” The website explains that “The President appoints a United States Attorney to each of the 94 federal districts (Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands are separate districts but share a United States Attorney). The United States Attorney is the chief federal law enforcement officer in their district and is also involved in civil litigation where the United States is a party.” The term of a U.S. Attorney lasts four years.

Fans of “The Australian Outback” will remember that Nick Brown, then 23, was a student at Harvard Law School (“Harvard Law student” was specifically what he listed as his occupation at the time). He went on to receive his Juris Doctor the following year, in 2002, according to the White House’s July 2021 announcement of Attorney nominees. Before that, he attended Morehouse College, a historically black men’s liberal arts college in Georgia, where he graduated in 1999 with a Bachelor of Arts.


Since His ‘Survivor’ Appearance, Brown Has Aided a Governor in Their 2020 Presidential Run

Nick Brown

CBSNick Brown’s official “Survivor” portrait (2001).

After graduating from Harvard, Brown immediately dove into the legal field. Brown, whose home state was Washington at the time of his “Survivor” appearance, according to his CBS bio, eventually worked his way up to become the assistant United States attorney (also known as a federal prosecutor, according to Harvard Law) for the Western District of Washington (the district where he would eventually become the highest ranking Attorney) in 2007. He held that position until 2013, according to the DOJ.

From 2013 to 2017, he served as general counsel to Washington Governor Jay Inslee, who began his term as Governor in 2013. Inslee, who ran for President in the 2020 Democratic primaries, practiced mock debates with his former chief counsel in 2019, according to the New York Times. In those mock debates, Brown would play a number of rivals. Inslee dropped out of the Democratic primaries in August 2019, before voting began.

According to Pacifica Law Group, of which he was a partner, Brown was also appointed as a co-chair of Washington’s Judicial Selection Committee in 2018.

During his time on “Survivor,” Brown was a member of the ill-fated Kucha tribe, and was voted out in 7th place, due to the power post-merge of the dominant former Ogakor tribe. He got to be a member of the jury, and eventually cast his vote for Colby Donaldson, who would go on to lose in a 4-3 vote to Tina Wesson.

“Survivor” airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. Eastern on CBS. Be sure to catch season 42 when it premieres March 9, 2022.


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