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In the news

Martha loves Dawna

Published November 4, 2005

In case you haven't been watching - and judging by the ratings, a lot of you haven't - St. Petersburg's Dawna Stone has been cementing her place amid the top contestants on NBC's The Apprentice: Martha Stewart.

Stone, 37, publisher of Her Sports magazine, captained her team to its first challenge victory in the prime time spinoff of Donald Trump's popular series in its Sept. 21 debut. On Wednesday night, she became the first team leader to win a second challenge.

Quietly, Stone has emerged as perhaps the top candidate to win a job with Martha Stewart. Eight of the original 16 are gone, and Stone's performance has been marked by a absence of backstabbing or arguing. She is easily the most professional of the bunch.

Stewart of late has shown a fondness for Stone and on Wednesday was full of compliments for her work promoting a new stain remover that anchored this week's challenge. Stone's reward? Breakfast with her team at Stewart's Bedford, N.Y., country estate.

Stewart's Apprentice has staggered through its inaugural season and has been moved into the 9 p.m. Wednesday slot opposite ABC juggernaut Lost. The show is tied for 66th place among broadcast shows with an anemic 5.3-million average weekly viewers.

[Last modified November 4, 2005, 01:40:17]

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