03/27/2013 07:26 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Jennifer Maldonado, Florida Woman, Declines Powerball Office Lottery Pool; Coworkers Share Win Anyway

It's a rare story that starts with the phrase, "You won't believe what my coworkers did today," and ends on a high note.

But Jennifer Maldonado, an administrative assistant at Keller Williams Partner Realty in Plantation, Fla., undoubtedly has a new appreciation for her colleagues after they won a portion of the $338 million lottery last week and decided to share the winnings with her -- even though she never bought a ticket.

According to The Miami Herald, a group of 12 went in on the Powerball tickets, pitching $20 apiece. Maldonado decided not to join in, later explaining that she was new to the job: "I hadn’t gotten a paycheck and I was watching my pennies.”

When her coworkers showed up in a celebratory mood the next day, claiming to have won $1 million (which works out to about $83,300 each), Maldonado thought she was getting punked. After all, the odds of winning $1 million in the Powerball are 1 in 5,153,632.65.

But winning the lottery is no joke. And fortunately for Maldonado, apparently neither is her office's pledge to win as a team, as her coworkers have promised to share some of the spoils with her.

Said Laurie Finkelstein Reader, a coworker who bought the tickets, to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, "I'll guarantee you the next time we play, [Maldonado will] be in there."

As for the full $338 million jackpot, that went to Pedro Quezadaof New Jersey.

PHOTO of the coworkers in Florida who will share the $1 million:
jennifer maldonado



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