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Wednesday
Mar272013

$1M Powerball Winners Share the Wealth with Coworker

Photo by William Thomas Cain/Getty Images(PLANTATION, Fla.) -- When Jennifer Maldonado went to work on Sunday at Keller Williams Partner Realty in Plantation, Fla., she was greeted with hooting and hollering.

That’s because on Saturday night, her 12 colleagues who’d gotten together for a Powerball office pool had won $1 million.

Maldonado thought it was a joke — “100 percent, thought it was a prank,” she told ABC News.

Recently hired as an administrative assistant and having not received her first paycheck, she’d opted not to participate in the $20 pool.

Laurie Finkelstein-Reader, who runs the office and organized the pool, even offered to lend her the money, but she’d declined.

“I wasn’t going to press her,” Finkelstein-Reader said. “I said to her: ‘If you don’t play, we’re going to win.’”

And win they did. One of the realty office’s tickets matched five of the winning numbers.

A man in New Jersey, however, won the $338 million jackpot by matching the five numbers as well as the Powerball number.

Maldonado’s co-workers will take home $83,000 after taxes — and each of them has agreed to give her a portion of their winnings.

She would only say that she was receiving a “gracious amount.”

“Enough that I’m floored and feel so appreciative,” Maldonado said.

The group said it was the right thing to do and that co-workers are like family.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio