Sheryl Sandberg Convinced Ali Fedotowsky to Lean In and Be on 'The Bachelorette'

"She's the biggest reason why I thought, 'No, this is like the best thing I can do to empower other women.'"

When Ali Fedotowsky signed up to become the Bachelorette in 2010 and have 25 men compete for the chance to be her husband, apparently that was a version of leaning in.

"When I was deciding if I should do The Bachelorette, Sheryl Sandberg herself called me and said, 'You have to do it. You have to show women that you can be a successful woman in business and be a wife and a mom and all these things. It's possible to have it all,'" Fedotowsky told The Cut. "She's the biggest reason why I thought, 'No, this is like the best thing I can do to empower other women.'"

Fedotowsky famously quit The Bachelor in 2009—choosing her career as an account manager for Facebook over the chance to be pilot Jake Pavelka's wife.

"I loved myself more than I loved the Bachelor. My career was the most important thing in my life at that time. And I thought, 'If this guy really cares about me, if this is real, right, then he's a pilot, for heaven's sake — he can get in a plane and come find me after the show's over,'" she told The Cut. "I think I knew deep down inside it wasn't really right and it wasn't real love."

After appearing on The Bachelorette, Fedotowsky eventually broke up with Roberto Martinez, who got her coveted final rose, and left the tech world. Now she's on E! as a correspondent from time to time and blogs at aliluvs.com. In September, she announced her engagement to radio host Kevin Manno.

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9.2.15 💍❤️ #MrsManno @kevinmanno

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