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December 11, 2000

Real-World Alpha Females

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Erica Van Ross

Age: 30

Location: St. Louis

Job: Television reporter, KMOV-TV

Hours at work per week: 45

Early alpha inklings: In my 20s, I had to watch a corporate video that, frankly, wasn't very good. But it was produced by a powerful person in the company. I was the only one to say it needed changes. My colleagues were horrified, but the bigwig appreciated my honesty — and changed the video.

Alpha instincts: I had to leave in the middle of a date once to report on extreme flooding in the area.

Best part of being me: Independence. I'm a strong woman who likes being able to do things on my own.

The downside: Hands down, dating! I want a guy who takes pride in his career, but how he treats me and his sense of humor are more important.

Relationship history: Men date me because they think it's interesting that I'm on TV, or they try to convince me that they're "good enough."

Kids: It's difficult to embrace the idea, so I push it out of my head so I won't be too devastated if it doesn't happen.

Plugged in: I carry a work-issued pager, a personal cell phone, and a work cell.

My posse: It's challenging with my beta friends, watching them go through situations where just a little more alpha would help.

Moments of doubt: Sometimes, when I feel pressured, I wish I were more of a backseat passenger.

The real me: I'm just a nice person who knows what she wants out of life and has to get it.

Theme song: "Keep on Going" by Vivian Green


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