The wait is over!
After months of anticipation, California’s newest billionaire was finally identified Tuesday.
The winner of the record $2.04 billion jackpot was identified as Edwin Castro during a news conference at California Lottery headquarters in Sacramento.
Castro was not in attendance, but a statement was read on his behalf said he was “shocked and ecstatic.”
Castro wanted to remain private and declined lotto officials’ invitation to appear publicly.
Only his name was released Tuesday, but lotto officials also said he chose to receive the lump sum of the jackpot, $997.6 million.
Another win announced Tuesday was for California public schools: November’s jackpot generated a record-breaking $156 million.
As a result, the California Lottery raised $2 billion in just one fiscal year, officials highlighted.
Proceeds from California Lottery ticket sales support public schools and colleges, including millions generated by unclaimed winning tickets.
“The real winner in the California public school system,” Castro said in his statement. “As someone who received the rewards of being educated in the California public education system, it’s gratifying to hear that as a result of my win, the California school system greatly benefits as well.”
“Clearly Edwin Castro shares in our love for California’s schools on this Valentine’s Day, couldn’t be more fitting,” California Lotto spokeswoman Carolyn Becker said.
In November, the Powerball jackpot reached the world record-setting amount after 41 consecutive drawings without a jackpot winner.
The winning ticket was purchased at Joe’s Service Center in Altadena. The store’s owner, Joe Chahayed, received a $1 million prize for selling the ticket, lottery officials said.