Chicago hair stylist becomes 2012’s first Powerball millionaire in Illinois


Contact: Liz Leonard 312-368-5823


CHICAGO – February 22, 2012 – Rota Juarez of Schiller Park is the Illinois Lottery’s first Powerball millionaire under the new $2 Powerball game. She claimed her $1 million prize Tuesday at the Chicago Claim Center from the Feb. 18 drawing after matching all five white ball numbers -- 23-28-50-56-59 -- but missing the red Powerball number which was 05.

Juarez, who has been playing the lottery for the past three years, says she is a fan of all the draw games. She buys her Powerball tickets on Tuesdays and Fridays at the retailer next door to where she works, Lorena Hair Salon. She’s a regular and always buys a quick pick. Little did she know that the purchase she made on Friday afternoon would change her life.

“I went to buy something at the gas station near my house on Sunday and decided to have the clerk check my ticket,” said Juarez. “The clerk told me I’d won $1 million. I asked if he was kidding me... I was shocked, I still can’t believe it!”

Juarez and her husband say they plan on using their lottery winnings to buy a house and pay for their daughter’s nursing school tuition.
The Illinois Lottery will present Rota Juarez with a commemorative check next week at J&R Food and Liquor on Ashland Ave. in Chicago where she purchased her Powerball ticket. The store will receive a bonus of $10,000 for selling Juarez the winning ticket.


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QUICK POWERBALL FACTS

• Current jackpot: $60,000,000
• Introduced in Illinois on January 31, 2010
• Overall odds of winning a prize: 1:31.8
• Generated approximately $11 billion for good causes nationwide since 1992
• Drawings are at 9:59 PM (CT) every Wednesday and Saturday
• All profits from Powerball in Illinois stay in Illinois to support education and capital developments
• Powerball is played in 44 lottery jurisdictions across the country


About Illinois Lottery

Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery has contributed more than $17 billion to the state Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools, as well as the Capital Projects Fund. Play responsibly. Players must be at least 18 years old.