Veronica Portillo (born November 27, 1977) is an American reality television personality and the co-creator of the 2000s College Dropout T-shirt line.
Semester at Sea
Portillo grew up in Irvine, California and is of Cuban descent. She was a student at UC Berkeley when she made her first appearance on MTV on Road Rules on its Semester at Sea season, Portillo gained notoriety for her conflicts and friendships with her fellow roadies as they traveled around the world as part of Semester at Sea. In 2018, part of the cast attended a 20-year reunion cruise, but Portillo couldn't make it.
In 2007 Portillo was invited back to participate in Road Rules: Viewers' Revenge. She was the first castmember nominated to the elimination pit, and subsequently, the first to be sent back to the Pit Crew. On the third week, she was nominated back to the pit, where she lost the challenge "Shuttle Puzzle" to Tori Hall, causing her to go back to the Pit Crew. She had another chance on the eleventh week but ended up losing for a third time.
Real World/Road Rules Challenge
Portillo was a member of team Road Rules. On this season she memorably landed on the bullseye in a solo skydiving mission that helped her team secure the final mission prize.
Battle of the Seasons
Veronica was once again a member of team Road Rules, alongside castmate Yes Duffy. However their good performance scared the Inner Circle that voted them out first.
Battle of the Sexes
Veronica improved her performance on this season and conquered a spot in the Inner Circle twice. Despite not having the lowest score, she was voted out in episode ten by the Inner Circle led by Emily Bailey.
In this Challenge, Portillo was very close with teammates Rachel Robinson and Tina Barta. Her team considered sending her in elimination, but she managed to win the Lifeshield twice, securing a spot in the final and ultimately winning her second season.
Portillo became more of a team leader during this season, winning the LifeSaver four times and being the only girl from the Road Rules team not to face elimination. Tension arose between her and Katie Doyle, since Portillo saw Doyle as the weak link and tried to get rid of her, but in the end they both competed in the final and won.
Battle of the Sexes 2
Portillo was part of the women team. She stepped up once for the role of team captain and was part of the Inner Circle that controversially voted out Cynthia Roberts before being voted off in episode 10.
The Inferno II
She was part of The Bad Asses team, alongside her allies Rachel Robinson and Tina Barta, and rivals Beth Stolarczyk and Tonya Cooley. Despite making it to the end and winning her first elimination round, her team lost to their opponents, The Good Guys.
After taking a break from the show, Portillo returned as part of the Champions Team. In the fourth episode after a long verbal battle with teammate Tonya Cooley, Veronica was struck by Cooley, who was struggling with alcoholism and had anger towards Portillo due to Portillo's treatment of Cooley during past seasons including her crafty, cliquish, and antagonistic methods of game play during the show's early seasons. This resulted in Tonya's disqualification from The Ruins. Not experiencing her previous success on the show, Portillo was later eliminated in the sixth episode by KellyAnne Judd from The Real World: Sydney. Her attempts at forming an alliance with Evan Starkman were rejected.
Champs vs. Pros
Portillo competed on the 2017 miniseries The Challenge: Champs vs. Pros for the charity Planned Parenthood, for which she raised 1.000 $. However she was quickly sent in elimination and lost against Ashley Mitchell from Real World: Ex-Plosion.
XXX: Dirty 30
Portillo returned to the main show eight years after her prior season to compete in the thirtieth season of The Challenge, where she became friend with Jemmye Carroll. Despite her long break she won an elimination against fellow veteran Aneesa Ferreira and orchestrated Leroy Garrett's elimination before being voted out in episode 14.
Portillo participated in the next installment of The Challenge, but had to face "mercenary" and former rival Aneesa Ferreira. During their elimination Veronica dislocated her pinky finger and couldn't continue.
The Challenge + Universal
In 2019, Portillo appeared on a special mini Challenge advertisement for Universal Orlando alongside other champions and hosted by Devyn Simone from The Real World: Brooklyn. She was paired with Darrell Taylor from Road Rules: Campus Crawl and competed against Derrick Kosinksi from Road Rules: X-Treme and Emily Schroom from The Real World: D.C., as well as Tori Hall from Road Rules 2007: Viewers' Revenge and Alton Williams from The Real World: Las Vegas. The special aired on May 22, 2019, during the season finale of War of the Worlds.
|3||Road Rules Team||Winner|
|6||Women's Team||17th/18th Place|
|7||Road Rules Team||Winner|
|8||Road Rules Team||Winner|
|9||Road Rules Team||17th/18th Place|
|10||Bad Asses Team||Runner-Up|
|32||Chris "CT" Tamburello||14th Place|
Adrian Portillo, Veronica's older brother, died on February 23, 2016. He was 40 years old.
On XXX: Dirty 30, Aneesa Ferreira (The Real World: Chicago alumna) revealed that Portillo and Rachel Robinson (Road Rules: Campus Crawl alumna and co-creator of the College Dropout T-shirt line) dated for three years after Ferreira and Robinson broke up. The two first met on Battle of the Sexes.
Portillo appeared in the May 2002 issue of Playboy, Real Nude in the Real World alongside Beth Stolarczyk from The Real World: Los Angeles, Flora Alekseyeun from The Real World: Miami, and Jisela Delgado from Road Rules: The Quest.
- "College Dropout". Archived from the original on 2009-02-23.
- Matthew Scott Donnelly (12 October 2017). "Remembering Veronica's Greatest Challenge Power Plays". mtv. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
- Ale Russian (December 31, 2018). "Road Rules Alum Veronica Portillo Reveals She's Sadly 'Not Able' to Attend 20-Year Reunion". People. Retrieved May 23, 2019.
- "Buddy TV - Veronica Portillo". BuddyTV.com. BuddyTV.com. March 3, 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-03-07. Retrieved 2007-04-07.
- Matthew Scott Donnelly (August 9, 2018). "HERE'S WHAT HAPPENED WHEN CT AND VERONICA SQUARED OFF ON THE CHALLENGE...14 YEARS AGO". MTV. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- VIDEO: Should Veronica Have Been Sent Packing With Tonya?, By Lisa Chudnofsky, 10/21/2009, MTV
- Jordana Ossad (June 14, 2017). "HERE'S WHO WE HAVE TO THANK FOR VERONICA PORTILLO'S CHALLENGE RETURN". MTV. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- Matthew Scott Donnelly (August 24, 2017). "IS VERONICA READY TO RECLAIM HER CHALLENGE QUEEN'S THRONE?". MTV. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- Jordana Ossad (December 21, 2017). "TEAM ROAD RULES: VERONICA AND SHANE REVEAL THEIR MASTER VENDETTAS PLAN". MTV. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- Todd Betzold (14 February 2018). "Who Went Home On 'The Challenge: Vendettas' Episode 7? [Spoilers]". inquisitr. Retrieved 13 January 2019.
- Meredith Jacobs (7 August 2018). "'THE CHALLENGE: FINAL RECKONING' EXCLUSIVE: WHY VERONICA PORTILLO THREATENED TO QUIT WHILE WORKING WITH CT". newsweek. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
- Alyssa Norwin (May 22, 2019). "'The Challenge': 4 Legendary Players Struggle With A Puzzle As They Return To Compete Once Again". HollywoodLife. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- Ashley Boucher (October 1, 2020). "The Challenge's Veronica Portillo Opens Up About Her Baby Being 'Born Sleeping' to Support Chrissy Teigen". People. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
- Tierney Bricker (29 August 2017). "The Challenge's Secret Romance Revealed: Veronica Portillo and Rachel Robinson Dated for 3 Years". eonline. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
- Matthew Scott Donnelly (November 21, 2017). "CHALLENGE REUNION: VERONICA LASHES OUT AT ANEESA FOR REVEALING PRIVATE RELATIONSHIP". MTV. Retrieved May 30, 2019.
- Andy Dehnart (April 2, 2002). "Flora, Beth S., Veronica and Jisela in Playboy this month". realityblurred. Retrieved January 25, 2019.