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Press release

January 26, 2002

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January, 2002 | Supporting Education | Southern California

Los Angeles Teacher Receives Exceptional Educator Award


SACRAMENTO -- California Lottery's "The Big Spin®" show airs Saturday, January 26, 2002, in twelve television markets statewide. Contestants on this week's show won a total of $120,000.

This week's show featured Exceptional Educator Kathleen Hannum who was presented her award on by Assemblyman Marco Firebaugh. Ms. Hannum was nominated for the award due to her work as a resource teacher at Tweedy Elementary School. She is the resource teacher for the intervention language program, which focuses on improving the reading skills of struggling 4th and 5th grade students by at least two grade levels. Assemblyman Firebaugh said, " It is my distinct pleasure to present the California Lottery's Exceptional Educator award to Kathleen Hannum for often going beyond the call of duty by reaching out and mentoring students." Hannum received the award and said, "The most rewarding part of my job in the last 22 years is having a former student return to tell me that I had inspired her to become a teacher. There is nothing more rewarding than the fact that you have somehow influenced someone's life in a positive way. That's the influence that teachers have on their students."

The Fantasy 5 contestant appearing on this week's show is Howard Felix of San Francisco a Pac Bell Supply Attendant, who won $25,000 on the Fantasy 5 Dream Machine. Mr. Felix plans to spend the money on his children. Upon reaching the stage, Felix said, "I just want to say hello to JT and Sweetie Pie". Felix went on to release the Dream Machine balls in the various slots ultimately winning $25,000. Machine players have up to five chances to launch one ball at a time into one of the five bins in the pinball-type game, each bin representing a cash amount. Prizes are cumulative, but only one ball may land in each bin to claim the prize amount. Players appearing on this segment qualify by mailing an entry form to the Lottery when $5 of Fantasy 5 games are purchased on one playslip.

This week's first finalist at the California Gold game was Neil Aman from Blue Jay. Mr. Aman who is a retired fireman and who has been married 40 years, won $20,000 spinning the prize wheel. Aman who received the surprise of his life when he scratched his winning entry ticket from the 66 his wife bought him for his 66th birthday.

The next contestant to spin the prize wheel from the second California Gold elimination round was John Hoots, a fireman from Chula Vista, who won $30,000. "It's amazing, I can't believe I'm here. I'm trying to be humble about this and now look where I am," exclaimed Hoots! The second runner-up for from the California Gold round was Andres Solis, a cook from Westminster, who won $5,000. California Gold is another way to get to the wheel on "The Big Spin" show. The game starts with 10 contestants whose Big Spin Scratchers® tickets each revealed three "TV SHOW" symbols on one ticket. When instructed, each player pushes down a "detonator" to reveal a prize ranging from $1,750 to $4,000. Two of those contestants will reveal gold nuggets and advance to the second round of play. Once there, they compete to see who can get the closest to 10 units of "gold nuggets" in their mining car without going over. The winner of this round goes to "The Big Spin" prize wheel, while the other contestant wins $5,000.

The California Lottery sells its products through a network of more than 18,000 outlets statewide. The Lottery provides 52.7 percent of its revenues to players as prizes, 34.1 percent to public schools and 13.2 percent for administrative expenses, which includes 6.9 percent for retailer commissions. Since 1985, the Lottery has raised more than $13 billion for public schools. The Lottery's contribution equals approximately 2 percent of the state's total education budget. "The Big Spin®" is the longest running Lottery game show in the country, airing continuously since 1985.


Howard Felix San Francisco $25,000
Neil Aman Blue Jay $20,000
John M. Hoots Chula Vista $30,000
Other California Gold Contestants   $45,000
  TOTAL $120,000
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